The Horse Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,968 Posts
First off, I'm sorry about your loss.

Was the foal stillborn? I have not seen this in foals, but have seen feet like that on baby goats that were still born and believed to have died in utero some days before, early stages of tissue breakdown is what we always chalked it up to. Hopefully someone more experienced will have better ideas, I'll be interested to see the responses on here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23,642 Posts
I'm very sorry for your loss.
From what little I can remember from my breeding books... foal hooves look like that in the last stages of development. They have soft caps on their hooves, and they're not solid so they won't damage the mare while they're being born. I can't remember what stage that is though... and I wish I could give you more solid information.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Very sorry about your loss. It's always really sad to lose a baby. Newborn foals are born with those little fingers on their feet. They don't have that many of them, but if you look at them when they are first born, they have a few on there. They are really soft, so that as soon as they try to stand, they start rubbing them off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,260 Posts
I've never seen that many on a foal. Ever. Looks very strange. Sorry about your loss.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
735 Posts
So sorry that you lost a foal.

The rubbery sort of fluffy 'stuff' on the bottoms of newborn foal feet are sometimes called 'fairy slippers', among other nicknames-- as Justdressageit said, it is normal and it helps the foal pass thru the mare's reproductive tract without sharp hoof edges catching on either the inside of the mare or the amnion. It crumbles off as baby learns to stand. Some foals will have more or less-- this baby had a bit more than some foals do but still totally normal.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
233 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,910 Posts
I am so very sorry for your loss.

Thank you for posting the pictures and the link. That was amazing...I've never seen a foal born and so I'd never heard of this before.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,968 Posts
Fascinating link, Eastowest, thanks for posting it. I've seen rubbery "caps" on newborns feet, but never seen them that long and fingery before, that's really something else.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
625 Posts
foal slippers
fairy slippers are the "simple names"
eponychium is the scietific name
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I lost a foal last night and am wondering why his feet looked like this?? Anyone else seen this??
I just lost a foal two days ago with hooves similar in appearance. The mother carried her for 12 months so although the vet said the feet appeared to be those of a premature foal, she went to term. The vet came out and did an autopsy and found nothing else abnormal. He said the hooves were softer than normal but made no comment on them being malformed. The lungs had air in them so he said this means the foal was born alive. I am wondering if it died because it could not stand on feet that look like this and, because if was raining, died of hypothermia. Anybody have any ideas?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
462 Posts
I'm sorry for your loss..I had a foal lost recently as well and feet looked a lot like those..not quiet but pretty much..he was still born at 320 days the best guess from the vet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I'm sorry for your loss..I had a foal lost recently as well and feet looked a lot like those..not quiet but pretty much..he was still born at 320 days the best guess from the vet.

Thanks. I am wondering if my foal's first time mom abandoned him. She was in the barn at 0600 when my husband checked her and she was again in the barn when I checked her at 0830. This is when I noticed her milk was in and foal was lying dead across the field. Seems all mother was interested in was in eating. Makes me nervous about breeding her again because, obviously, she did not bond the first time. The vet is encouraging me to try again but I will feel horrible if it results in another death...we live in Washington state and the weather was bad--cold and rainining. If the mom did abandon him, he could have died from hypothermia. It was obvious, though, that he never got on his feet. His head and torso were clear of the placenta, but his hindquarters still were draped with it. Vet says he probably was born weak. But why? I feel so guilty because if I had been out there, I probably could have saved him..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
462 Posts
I don't know much about mare abandonment..I've only had 1 mare who has lost her foal twice now. once in 2010 and 2nd just a week ago. She never left either one though. She was found standing by or within 10 feet from the foal. She was not a maiden though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I don't know much about mare abandonment..I've only had 1 mare who has lost her foal twice now. once in 2010 and 2nd just a week ago. She never left either one though. She was found standing by or within 10 feet from the foal. She was not a maiden though.
So sorry, that's gotta be tough to go through twice. So, she has had successful live births in the past? Do you know the cause of death of the deceased foals? I have never had a failed foaling before. Do you think this is becoming more commonplace? My vet said it was just bad luck but I believe it happened for a reason.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,900 Posts
So sorry to hear of the loss of your foal. That was very interesting though to learn about the foal's feet. Is your mare doing OK?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,583 Posts
I just lost a foal two days ago with hooves similar in appearance. The mother carried her for 12 months so although the vet said the feet appeared to be those of a premature foal, she went to term. The vet came out and did an autopsy and found nothing else abnormal. He said the hooves were softer than normal but made no comment on them being malformed. The lungs had air in them so he said this means the foal was born alive. I am wondering if it died because it could not stand on feet that look like this and, because if was raining, died of hypothermia. Anybody have any ideas?
Not sure where you get your hay from, but you may have had a mustard foal. There was a study done by Eastern Washington University on mustard babies. If the mare consumes mustard plants in her last trimester, the foal is effected. Some of the main signs of a mustard foal is a lengthened gestation with a preemie foal. There are also other negatives depending on the severity of the case. My mom had a very mild case of a mustard foal, and she was very small with that preemie hair and size. She also had to be assisted in standing up every two hours (helped down too) for the first 28 hours of life. The vet my mom used is very knowledgeable, and has handled many mustard foals. Most aren't so lucky and end up being PTS. My mom's filly was very lucky and my mom isn't taking any more chances and is keeping her pregnant mare away from all mustard.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I don't know much about mare abandonment..I've only had 1 mare who has lost her foal twice now. once in 2010 and 2nd just a week ago. She never left either one though. She was found standing by or within 10 feet from the foal. She was not a maiden though.
I was told that there is a strong correlation between the West Nile vaccine and still births, premature births, deformities. I highly doubt it, but what do you think?
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top