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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I got my first mare last fall, and she has been so great, not mare-ish at all!

I guess I have kind of a naive question because I have been a gelding owner for so long. Should I be expecting my mare to be coming in to "season" yet, or when to they tend to start in the spring? (It seems like I read somewhere that they don't cycle in the winter).

Here's why the question is important to me. There is a small chance she could be pregnant. I had the vet check her right after I got her, and he said she wasn't, unless it was within about a month of him checking her. Now, she WAS in a pasture with a stud and a bunch of other mares and foals when I bought her, which was within a month of him checking her.

So I guess I'm just wondering if she will show herself as being in season at some point, or if she could be in foal.

I WILL definitely have the vet check her again, when he comes out for spring shots in April. But in the meantime I am biting my nails! It was the beginning of November when the vet checked her the first time and didn't find anything, so I know if she were pregnant, it would have to have taken place sometime in October, making the baby due in September, correct?

For months I figured she was not pregnant, but now I am starting to wonder. That belly has not gone down and if anything it might be bigger. It's really hard to tell just by looking at her though, because she was used as a broodmare and has a baby-belly all the time. So she always looks pregnant.

So are mares coming into season this time of year yet? I assume she would show some type of indication because she is in with 2 geldings. Usually when I ride my gelding with mares it is always pretty apparent when they are in season, lol!
 

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ideally a mare will not cycle during the winter months. however, my tb mare cycled and fell during winter.

i would definitely suggest having a vet check eg; ultrasound or a 'do it yourself' test first if you cant wait. in this instance i would ASSUME that she is in foal considering she was running with a stallion. IME even during winter even if a mare hasnt been cycling she may well do so if a stallion is present. if i were you, for now, i would assume she is in foal and treat her as such. but i would most definitely get a preg test or vet check ASAP :)

good luck :)
 

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All of my mares cycle all year long, as do many other mares I know. I've had people tell me it's because I'm in Az... well, so are you! So, she may or may not. And you can't always tell when they are. I have one mare (who I have two foals out of) I can't always tell even by teasing her with my stallions.

If she's pregnant and due in Sept, you won't be seeing a belly yet.
 

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When I lived on the west coast my mares cycled all year round. Out here in the midwest, I have noticed some, though not all mares, do seem to stop cycling in the winter (my pony mare kept up regular heats all winter long this year though). I would think in Az you would be more likely to still have mares that cycle, though to my understanding it has more to do with daylight hours than temperature. (my horses are now in a lighted barn, I think that's why my pony mare cycled this winter).

I would think if your mare was running with a stud there is a pretty good chance she was bred, especially if she was running with him over the summer/fall. She should be far enough along now the vet could tell by palpitation, of you could have an ultrasound done.

Good luck and let us know either way!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks guys! I will ask the vet to palpate when he comes back out to do shots. I am kind of waiting because I want him to give the West Nile shot too, and he doesn't like it give it too early because I guess it can wear off before the end of mesquito season if you give it too early.

I am in northern Arizona, so we are just starting to get some warm weather, thank goodness!

If she is pregnant, you can be sure I will be posting here for all kinds of advice. It would be my first foal. :D

PS. You can see Isabelle in my "horses" section of my user info. That is right after I got her, and as you can see she had a baby belly then, even though she had a foal nursing on her when I got her. The guy said the belly never goes away no matter how hard she works, lol! She also has permanent large teats that make everyone scratch their head and wonder what gender she is! :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Here are some recent photos of her. Please ignore the mud up to her knees and wooly winter coat.

She has gained some weight since I bought her, which is good because she was thin over her spin and lacked muscle along her back. So I did get some weight on her back. I am just wondering if that caused the belly to get larger too. Or maybe the belly is the same size and it's an optical illusion!

I don't know if I have any photos of her not saddled from right after I bought her. Hmm. I'll have to look.
 

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goodness gracious- you really DID get some weight on her eh? I'm jealous, can't fatten my skinny boy up to save my life. She could definitely stand to lose a lot and muscle up some, but since you haven't had her long, this will come in time! Definitely have the vet palpate her, how old is she? Sometimes age and body condition will affect cycling. As Chey mentions in warm sunny climates a lot of mares continue all year, but have less regular cycles in winter. Year round cycling makes the chances of her getting bred in october or november much more likely (as she was with studs), where most mares don't grow viable follicles that late in the season. Fingers crossed that she is just a wonky cycler. Good luck and enjoy her , she has a sweet, kind eye.
 

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She is so cute. Love her geometric braid job! My mare are in full season but I have a frisky " gelding" also. She may go into season ( if not bred) and you may never notice a change in her. Some mares just don't act all funny and such when in season. My QH has never shown any changes in behavoir at all, unless I put her with my " I think I'm a stud" gelding.
 

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UPDATE!

Well, I had the vet out today for shots, teeth floating and pregnancy check and guess what? She's in foal!!!!! I am really excited!!!

At first the vet didn't really think she needed to be checked again, but said he could check her if I wanted him to. So I said, yes, it would be good to know for sure (because the very first time he checked her and she didn't feel pregnant, was right after I bought and brought her home).

So he's palpating and then he gets this little grin on his face and says "she's in foal" like he couldn't quite believe it himself. And then he floated her teeth and before he left said "I'm sure glad we checked your mare." :lol:

He thinks she's about 5 months along, and will probably foal sometime in August or September.

So wow, I have a lot of learning to do! This will be my first foal. Heck, this is my first mare! She has had foals before, two that I know of, so hopefully all will go smoothly.

Any suggested reading material, either online or books?
 

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I HIGHLY recomend watching LOTS of marestare and reading the threads on the mares there, you'll learn a ton ;)

And I also HIGHLY recomend two books. The Complete Book of Foaling, and The Complete Foaling Manual. Lots of people recomend Blessed are the Broodmares, but I don't like that one nearly as much as the other two (I own all three).
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you!

I visited marestare once, but is there any way to find out who is actually foaling or getting ready to? Because otherwise there is just a lot of mares standing in their stalls dozing. :lol: How can I see one in "action?"
 

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From Marestare's main page, you click the tab at the top that says "barn alarm". Then just leave it running in the background while you do your normal things. It will post up a link, and make a sound, when someone places low or high alerts on mares, with a link directly to which camera the alert is from. Low alert makes the sound of galloping hooves, high alert makes a loud whinny.

I second the complete foaling manual, it has TONS of info (like, way more than you'd ever need, most likely!) Also just lots of online research is always helpful. Someone posted a great website a while back that had pictures of mares through the final days of their pregnancy....I can't remember what site that was but I'll try to track it down for you.
 

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Congrats on becoming a grandma! The same thing happened to me just this year. We now have our first foal and he is great! I'll tell you what a breeder told me. Keep and eye on her, but leave it up to the experts..the mare herself. I'll be honest thats really hard to do cause i'm a big worrier. But he was right, I took all the precautions and was all prepared to be there, and of course I went in the house for about 10 min to get some hot tea, and when I got back....he was laying there doing just awesome! Kaluah is such a great mommy, she really did know what to do better than anyone else. He's 2 weeks old today and going great. You're gonna have a blast.
 
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