Jos what would, or could cause a 17 year old mare to lose her pregnancy by the time she is 90 days along. This is the second year in a row that this has happened to this mare. She had been progressing along nicely and just about a week before her 90 day mark she has lots of what seems like a bloody discharge on her hind legs from her vulva down to her hoofs. Than a week later she is in season again. Could it be that she needs to be put on Regumate or something else to help support her pregnancy from, say, 60 days on? What would your thoughts be?
There are many possible reasons - too numerous to list here. I will say though that putting the mare on Regumate would be at the bottom of my treatment list (follow that link to find out why).
You would be well advised to start with solid diagnostics. First of all of course, confirm without doubt that she is not pregnant! Ultrasound/palpation/hormone assay are all called for there - remembering that you are in the time frame when the fetus drops over the pelvic brim and out of reach of the palpator/ultrasonographer (so assay after 100-120 days of pregnancy for estrone sulfate or total estrogens may be warranted if there is doubt). Of course, if the cervix is relaxed, you can be sure there is no pregnancy in residence. The next step if she is not pregnant would be to have an ultrasound evaluation of the reproductive tract, coupled with a manual evaluation of the cervix. This latter evaluation is best performed during diestrus, when irregularities in cervical competency are more easily identified (as it should be tightly closed at that point). The next step would be a uterine biopsy and culture. It is likely that one of the above diagnostics will produce a reason. One of the most common causes for pregnancy loss in the time frame mentioned is endometrial or glandular fibrosis, so fibrotic changes of the uterus are worthy of note, and can be identified with the biopsy.
Having said all of the above, it is also worth while considering that there are other possible causes outside the mare herself. Cytogenic abnormalities of the fetus, or environmental factors can also result in pregnancy loss, and will not be identified in the mare.
Thank you Jos for your information regarding my mare. Now, I will have to call or try to find a good vet and have her checked.
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