Mare in foal - purchased pasture exposed - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Mare in foal - purchased pasture exposed

Hello! New here, but looking for some input.

I purchased this young mare when I moved my gelding to family property as a pasture mate. She was feral (we're doing better on that) but she is terrified of ropes and halters so I'm unable to get her seen by a vet at this time. Doing by best to get her there.

Posting pictures. First is from April 30th, second is from Memorial Day. I moved her in October last year, so I know she's at least 9 months along, but any helpful input would be appreciated. No udder development yet.
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post #2 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 01:40 PM
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looks like you have a baby on the way.
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post #3 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 01:45 PM Thread Starter
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Well, yes... I gathered by the physical development lol. Just trying to get a feel for when I should start camping out for all nighters, is all. She's a bit smaller than the stud and only 3 this year, so I'd like to be around incase something is amiss.
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post #4 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
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To clarify, she was pastured in a large her that included a stud before I bought her. I moved my gelding to family property because of the lack of forage, and bought her to accompany him since they were already acquainted. Now, knowing she is likely in foal after all, I'm glad I did or she'd have been in poor conditon.
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post #5 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 02:45 PM
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First thing you need to do is get that mare in a small area so you can get her handled before the foal arrives. If you think she's feral now, wait until she goes all protective over a foal. Or worse, rejects it but won't let you near it. She'll go roughly 11 months from last cover, so if she's at least 9 months now, you may have about 2 months to go. You need to get her to allow you to catch and halter her, lead her around and then start working on getting her into a stock so she can be examined.

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post #6 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 03:37 PM
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Agreed. She needs to be in a small area where you can work with her. What if she or the foal need vet care after foaling? You can't have a feral mare that won't allow herself to be caught and handled or if there is a problem, you'll be helpless to assist her or the foal, or will have to traumatize her to care for her or the baby. Get her in a small place and work with her on being caught, haltered, and led--- groomed and handled, etc. Teach her to load in a trailer in case she needs to go to the emergency vet. Do that now. Murphy's law guarantees foaling problems will happen to the mare you can't handle, so get her used to being handled. Even if all goes well with foaling, a mare you can't catch will lead to a wary foal you can't catch. If you lack the skills to get the mare used to being handled, a week or two with a trainer will help a lot.
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post #7 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 03:41 PM Thread Starter
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To clarify, she was completely feral when I got her in October. Couldn't touch her, couldnt get close to her.

Now, she does come up to anyone for attention, loves kisses on the nose. I can, at this point, rub my hands all over her, brush her, pick feet up, etc. She's pretty friendly and sweet (I was told this is how she was as a weanling before being turned out for 2 years). My grandma refers to her as "nosey pest" lol. And I have been working with her with the halter and rope, but it's a process and a delicate balance between pushing limits a little and breaking trust. At THIS point, she is not halter broke and I was simply asking for opinions about how close she might be, as I can't say for certain I'll have her in a halter and trailered before she foals.

And, only 2 horses on 11 acres - she's got space to be scarce after foaling, should she end up being hostile over it. But her personality suggests she'd be more likely to come show it off. If she does reject it, that's a different story and of course I'll do what needs to be done to get the foal away and cared for.

She is kept with my gelding. He has been around foals just about every spring of his 21 years. Never had an issue. The property is crossfenced into two equal sections, so they can be separated if needed.
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post #8 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 03:50 PM Thread Starter
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So, there's no "small space" out there. Frankly, I've rarely used a roundpen for training. Moving them out there was a quick decision, and done rather hastily as the place I had my gelding boarded was no longer safe for me or him. They have free choice forage, access to water and shelter - but there's no pen or barn or anything like that. So far, I haven't needed it with her to come as far as we have. When I say she's scared of ropes and halters, it's a real fear. If you're outside, she wants to be with you and will lead freely (the trick is getting her to go away lol). Bring out a rope or halter, she gets very nervous and antsy.

Trainers local to me are notorious for taking your money and only working the horse when they know you're coming. I don't trust trainers, which is why I'm working on her myself. I didn't ask for training advice, just input on how close she might be to foaling.
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post #9 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bas180001 View Post
When I say she's scared of ropes and halters, it's a real fear. If you're outside, she wants to be with you and will lead freely (the trick is getting her to go away lol). Bring out a rope or halter, she gets very nervous and antsy.

I didn't ask for training advice, just input on how close she might be to foaling.
I have a donkey (different than a horse, I know) who was the same way. Within a short time of purchasing him, I could touch him all over, pick up feet, etc. Bring a halter, lead rope, even hay string out and he was gone. Would not come within reach, even for food. You could tell it was fear, idk what his prior experience with people was. Obviously not a good one. So I feel your pain. Best of luck getting her over her fear.

As to how close she is to foaling, that is hard to predict by picture alone - especially with (I presume, given her age) a maiden. If she was pulled out of the pasture 9 months ago, she could not have more than 2 months to go, if I am doing my math correctly. The more handling she receives, the better the chance she will be receptive to help (if needed) when foaling.
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post #10 of 70 Old 06-10-2019, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I paid for and moved her the first weekend of October of last year, with my gelding. So she is AT LEAST 9 months along. There was only 3 weeks or so between the pictures, so maybe more?

When I say it was hastily done - the forage ran out at the boarding place and no more would be planted. More horses were being added to the pasture on top of that, and my gelding was dropping weight despite my best efforts (and I'm talking 10 lbs of feed a day and as much hay as he would eat at a time). Horses started breaking out to find food, and the night a different mare (not mine) backed me up on a barbed fence and kicked the crap outta me, we were outta there. So, I realize my set up isn't ideal and I've not gotten her as far as she needs to be in regards to desensitizing her, but it was by necessity. Truly. Someone was bound to get hurt, and that someone was gonna be me. (Note, neither of my horses have ever offered a kick since I've had them. )

I have gotten her to where I can be around with a halter in hand, but she's wary of it. The one time I could rub a rope on her, she tolerated for all of 5 seconds before bolting. But this is something we work on several days a week.

She does let me rub her (even her belly and hind quarters), brush her, walk around, pick up feet, etc. She's learned ground manners in short time and really is just the sweetest thing.

I just don't want to give the impression that I'm naive or don't know anything. I picked her because she was young and (although ungentled) had a good temperment. She and my gelding got along well before moving, so I knew there wouldn't be bullying. My options are trailering her or build stocks for the vet to come out. Neither being something I can do overnight.

Ps - if anyone happens to have good prints for a solid stock or any ideas on that, creatively, I'm all ears.
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