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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an AQHA Buckskin mare that is bred to my AQHA Chestnut Stallion. The mare was bred on April 11 and 12, 2009. She was set to be due on or around March 19, 2010. And still no baby as of April 5...

I figured between extreme weather changes and moon phases, she would have popped by now. On March 19 & 20, we had a snow storm roll by, on March 23, we had some sever weather pass, and on March 30 we had a full moon.

The reason why I am so frustrated is because this is a maden mare and her first foal. In the past I have been unlucky with a couple of first foals and lost them due to some complication or another reason. Weather and health were all good, but nature did not agree with us.

Two weeks ago, I could feel the baby jump and kick. Now the mare has dropped more, but all I hear is the swishin and whirling sound of liquid in the belly. Her bag seems to be developing more, and she has dropped more.

I have been around all types of livestock and raise, hogs, sheep, cattle, and horses. I am so use to a sow (hog) going within 2-3 days of her due date and a ewe (sheep) being within in a week, but horses are different. This difference I don't agree with... why can't science and nature agree for once....as to mare's being due around 340 -350 days.

I will post current pictures of the mare this afternoon, unless I get a baby between now and then.
 

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I have an AQHA Buckskin mare that is bred to my AQHA Chestnut Stallion. The mare was bred on April 11 and 12, 2009. She was set to be due on or around March 19, 2010. And still no baby as of April 5...

I figured between extreme weather changes and moon phases, she would have popped by now. On March 19 & 20, we had a snow storm roll by, on March 23, we had some sever weather pass, and on March 30 we had a full moon.

The reason why I am so frustrated is because this is a maden mare and her first foal. In the past I have been unlucky with a couple of first foals and lost them due to some complication or another reason. Weather and health were all good, but nature did not agree with us.

Two weeks ago, I could feel the baby jump and kick. Now the mare has dropped more, but all I hear is the swishin and whirling sound of liquid in the belly. Her bag seems to be developing more, and she has dropped more.

I have been around all types of livestock and raise, hogs, sheep, cattle, and horses. I am so use to a sow (hog) going within 2-3 days of her due date and a ewe (sheep) being within in a week, but horses are different. This difference I don't agree with... why can't science and nature agree for once....as to mare's being due around 340 -350 days.

I will post current pictures of the mare this afternoon, unless I get a baby between now and then.

Gosh I feel your pain!! My mare was due March 17th, she ended up going 360 days and just foaled last night. When it gets this far out you just want to pull your hair out. I don't have any advise to offer, but I know what you are feeling!
 

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well i hope you get a baby soon
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
First two photos were taken about 3 weeks ago (March 16). Next 3 photos were taken yesterday (April 4). Udder photos First one was taken yesterday, the last one was taken today.
 

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well she is a very pretty girl. and i'm not to good as my mare foaled a month after i expected she would. but she will have it when she is ready. as she is maiden i would definitely do some nightly checks. thats what i did. all mares are different and she will foal when she feels she is ready. as long as she doesn't go over 380 days i wouldn't worry TOO much.

my schedule was
graining & check at 6am
mom would check around 12pm
graining and check at 6pm
nightly check and bring more water at 11pm
and again at 1-3am

i end up catching her foal at 8pm
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, today is April 8th and I am still waiting. I have been checking her every day at the same time. Today I checked her and got her up close now. I checked her udder and got a small squirt of clear liquid. Does this mean that she is going to go tonight????????? No actual milk yet.

Temps are dropping to near 38 degrees.
 

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Well, today is April 8th and I am still waiting. I have been checking her every day at the same time. Today I checked her and got her up close now. I checked her udder and got a small squirt of clear liquid. Does this mean that she is going to go tonight????????? No actual milk yet.

Temps are dropping to near 38 degrees.
No. :D Possible, but not something to stress over. My mare had a "mostly" full udder, more than the pics of your girl, and yellow fluid in her udder from January 28th, she just finally foaled on April 5th.

Your mare also doesn't look relaxed around her tailhead yet, usually an indication the baby will be in the next two weeks, but not always, again it wasn't with my mare, she was relaxed for months! The best indication, in my mares case, was the milk tests. Worth doing, in my opinion. My mare made the jump from 220 Calcium to 1000 calcium 24 hrs before she foaled, and her milk, though it had gone from the yellow clear stuff to white and thin/runny about a month before, turned very thick and syrupy, and almost blue tinged. I have a lot of pictures I posted while waiting for my mare to foal on the thread http://www.horseforum.com/horse-breeding/foaling-qs-46465/ If you click through to the last few pages, I have pictures of her udder/vulva posted 24 and 2 hours before she foaled.

That being said, it's always better to be prepared, so still keep checking her! Good luck!
 

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I know how you feel, my mares we always late.

BTW I was due to have my human baby on April 5th and I am still waiting...lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Sigh... Getting Closer? She has fluid filled in the udder. You can bearly squeeze the teets and they will squirt clear yellish liquid.

Pictures taken in the last 24 hours.
 

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She is adorably cute and VERY rotund isnt she?!

Have you tested her milk? That will usually pinpoint it for you to within a day of her foaling. Dont bother wasting money on the "Special Foaling Kit" ones either - all you need is distilled water from your drug store (about 1.50 for 1 gallon and that will last you for 10 years!) and pool or spa test strips that measure ph and calcium. Its very very accurate and will allow you to sleep if the mare isnt close on those 2 readings

Do you need some toothpicks to keep your eyes pried open?! :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have never tried those. I don't even have a clue has to how to read them or use them. Could you give me some pointers? Could someone get the strips from a drug store or walmart?
 

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Foalingsigns

This website gives you a step by step on using the standard HTH pool test kit you can get at walmart. (You'll need to scroll down to find the testing info).

I used a kit provided by my vet for my mare, cost me near 100 bucks by the end. I wish I'd known! I think you can get all the supplies to do it this way from walmart for about 6 bucks :)
 

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After you collect the milk in a little clean cup here are the steps (and remember you dont need much milk - just a good 2 or 3 squirts will be more than enough)

Step #2: Observe. First milk will be like water. You don't even have to waste a strip on this. next will look like Pee. Clear but yellow in color. This is often preceded by a very thick, sticky, clear stuff. Dunno what that is. Won't test, don't bother wasting a strip unless you are *reeeeealy* anxious. I know you're tempted since this is the first sign of 'change' and is sticky... o.k., go ahead, try it. I'm right.

Next will change to lemonade. That's when you start testing. Next will be lemonadey, but with tiny, tiny flecks of white. closer still... Final change will be to cloudy/grey/bluish. If you're brave, taste a drop or two. Early milk will be salty. When she gets close, it will be sweet, or to me, 'rich' like the taste of cream (which I don't think has so much a taste as a 'texture' or aftertaste.)
Stickyness is worth noting too. Early, early stuff--the clear, thick goo is sticky, but later, when the milk dries on your fingers, if it's sticky and flakes like sugar water drying--you're closer.

Step #3: Testing Equipment and procedures. You may buy the "Mare Foal Predictor Kit" (Jeffers is cheapest I've found, 1-800-Jeffers) which makes you feel like Beakman (luved that show!) and is pretty user friendly, or the Chemetircs "Titrets" (just the name makes me laugh! punch... ) which are also supposedly user friendly. (Haven't ever braved them, so this post only applies to 'strip' tests.) OR, you can build your own kit for about $20 LESS than either of the above by buying Water Hardness test strips. Best brand I've found is "AquaChek" which tests calcium only. A local pool shop was able to order these and have them in 2 days for me.

EVEN BETTER are Hot Tub strips. Four-or-five-way strips which test calcium, pH and some other stuff that mares really don't care about. I use "Baqua Spa" and "Soft Soak". Both are made for Bromine-Free, Chlorine Free Spas & Hot Tubs. Readily available, cheaper than the Aqua check (which is weird, since they have 4 in 1 tests) AND have the added entertainment value of pH testing. Brand isn't important, what you're looking for is a test that measure Calcium as CaCO3 in Parts Per Million (ppm) from 100-500 at least. As I said, a pH test is bonus fun.

-You also need some type of small (5cc) test tube or larger than 3cc syringe with cap, a 3cc Syringe, a 1cc syringe (insulin syringes are perfect) and, the magic potion: DISTILLED WATER. This is the secret "testing solution" in the commercial kits. The key is it has no inherent minerals, so the test is accurate.

-Ratio for testing is 6 to 1, or 3 to 1/2. For me, all I can ever get early on is 1/2 cc of milk, so I use 3cc of distilled h20 to 1/2 cc of milk. Mix 'em together, WELL in mini-test tube or syringe.

-Dip strip for one second. Do NOT shake off if it's the spa test strips. DO if it's the others. (i.e. follow the directions for the particular strip)

Step #4 Time, observe and bang head against wall... The calcium only strips show changes in 15 seconds. pH at 30. The mare strips are supposed to be checked at 1 minute, but if you see earlier changes, that's good, and part of how you figure how close you are.

Step #5 Interpreting results:
Calcium: Less than 100 ppm, you can go 2 days before rechecking unless you notice other, significant changes. Above 100ppm, but less than 200 ppm, check daily, in the evening. Once you hit 200 ppm, you've GOT MILK. 90% of mares will foal within 24-48 hours. Over 500 ppm, camp out in the stall, here we goooooo....

On the mare strips, 1-3 squares in a minute, 2 days before next check. A FAST three though, recheck daily. 4, something like 80% chance in 24, 5, within 12 hours. a FAST 4 or 5 and buckle in, we're off...

pH: Found out by accident when I couldn't get my regular calcium strips how useful this is. You CAN test pH, and it's actually a very reliable and easy indicator! pH will be well over 7 up until you've got Colostrum (over 8.4, the "high" test on the spa strips) When you get colostrum, pH will drop to below 7. The information I found is when it gets below 7, you're within a few hours. This second measure is INVALUABLE test could be helpful for a mare who has a high calcium count for a couple of days. The pH will not drop until just before foaling. She WILL GO within 6-24 hours.

**adding** the pH is a DRAMATIC change. All the strips I've used have been 'fuschia'' color at the high end, and yellow at the low. When the milk has changed, it stays VERY yellow. BUTTER yellow. Below 6.8, off the charts low. I know it's exciting when it is peachy, and that means things *are* changing... but you still could have a day or two to go--for me it means testing at least every 8-10 hrs. once I see it start to drop.

Finally, it's really, really obvious in the test tube with the water what you've got. After doing this a few dozen times, I've noticed the milk that is real MILK, i.e., close, stays in suspension. With just half-a cc in the tube, the entire sample looks cloudy, like you put water in a not-rinsed-milk-glass. It STAYS this way. Earlier samples settle and need to be reshook. In the end, all the evidence leading up to dipping the strip tells me my answer, I just like the empirical evidence to justify booking out of work.

Obviously you have to take in these results with an eye towards other signs like dialation/elongation of the vulva (we really can't 'see' dilation, but some folks refur to the vulva changes as such,) softening of the tail head etc. And the standard disclaimer about maidens apply: they break all the rules, so don't RELY on any signs at all.

Its virtually infallible (well - as infallible as ANYTHING can be around horses anyhow!)

Good luck - let us know how she tests!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, I checked the mare this morning and found that she was giving the creamy skim milk. I purchased the spa test strips this afternoon, checked the milk and it was automatically changing to the lowest pH and highest hardness. I tested the milk at 6:30 this evening and at 8:15, I had a baby on the ground.

Sorrel Stud cold with blaze face and three socks. I will post pictures in a couple of days.
 

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Haha I should have mentioned that *lol* Murphy's law if you by the test strips you will only have to use one *g* I think the same thing happened to lilkitty.

Can't wait to see pictures of your new baby!!
 

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Haha I should have mentioned that *lol* Murphy's law if you by the test strips you will only have to use one *g* I think the same thing happened to lilkitty.
I thought Murphy's Law said WHEN you went out to purchase them BEFOE you got home to test the milk the foal would be born!!! :lol:

Congrats on the new arrival - please do post pictures when you can ... :)
 

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beautiful mare and colt! what a pretty boy! lol and yeah i bought my test strips and decided to stop at the pasture and test her on the way hoem from buying them at walmart i got there. and she was within minutes of giving birth. i ended up loosing them all going crazy trying to find the camera but ahh well lol didn't even get to use one of em! at least your boy is finally here! = )
 
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