I've got a 10 year old TB mare that I have not gotten in foal the past two years. She did get bred three years in a row at ages 5-7 each year producing healthy foals. I am considering selling her now, as I have upgraded my stock to higher quality. I noticed last winter that she has a smallish bag with milk that is easily expressed. If she would work as a nurse mare I would not mind keeping her. I just don't know ANYTHING about nurse mares. I breed about 4-5 mares a year myself. Can any of you fill me in on whether she would be of value as a nurse mare, or can you guide me to information that would help inform me about this practice? Thanks in advance.
Hi Sam; The main thing about a good Nurse Mare is she has to have a strong Mothering instinct.She must be a quiet mare. She needs to have plenty of milk. She also should be a protective Mare. Not so as to chase everyone out of the stall,but be protective in a herd or paddock where other horses are.Some mares are happy to be pushed around on the bottom of the peckng order and thats not helping the foal become a strong minded adult latter down the road. A good Nurse Mare isn't there just to provide a sourse of milk but to train the foal (give it direction)into becoming a horse. Hope that helps a little.
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