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Heat Stroke in Foals

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » Foaling and Immediate Post-foaling Issues » Heat Stroke in Foals « Previous Next »


Author Message
 

Cjskip
Breeding Stock
Username: Cjskip

Post Number: 271
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Tuesday, April 22, 2008 - 11:43 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

For you who live in hot climates, how do you keep foals from getting heatstroke? Someone told me about a woman who has foals and one was hospitalized due to heat stroke.

Apparently they don't know to stand in the shade? How do you manage if you don't have covered paddocks/stalls or whatever?

I'm planting a tree, but that doesn't help if the foal won't stand under it.
 

Mary Greer
Yearling
Username: Cowgirlup07

Post Number: 87
Registered: 02-2008
Posted on Wednesday, April 23, 2008 - 11:09 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If my babies still have thick coats like most do I normally will do a body clip letting them have a max of 1/2 inch hair. I live in Oklahoma so you never know how the weather will be here. It was in the 90 yesterday and today it is really cool out. I would wait til there are absolutely no cold weather coming in before clipping coats... Hope this helps!
 

Catherine Owen
Breeding Stock
Username: Cateowen

Post Number: 201
Registered: 12-2007
Posted on Wednesday, April 23, 2008 - 11:33 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

CJ,
I live in South Carolina and honestly, we have never worried about it. I have also had foals in Colorado, Arizona, Texas and Georgia.

One thing that would perk my attention if someone says "heatstroke" is that question of: "Is the baby nursing enough? i.e., getting enough fluids?" That would probably be the first area I would explore.

As for conditions, no, horses don't sometimes do "what they are supposed to" :-) You may plant a tree for shade and your mare may think its extra forage or something to munch on when she is bored.

Throughout my life, our broodmares typically had stalls or run-ins to come into during bad weather or the heat of the day. Starting in the late spring when those temps start getting up into the upper 70's to 80 degrees we have a box fan on the stall front blowing into the stall during the day.

But then there are thousands of foals raised throughout the country every year that are just pasture raised without the benefit of fans, etc.

I think hydration is the most important factor. Make sure there is a fresh water source for everyone, and plenty of it. Also make sure the foal is nursing and getting adequate fluids.
 

Jane Olney
Breeding Stock
Username: Shotsnurse1

Post Number: 603
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Wednesday, April 23, 2008 - 07:45 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Catherine-
I am from Newberry, SC. In the summer of 1983 we had some 106 degree days. I was 19 or 20 at that time. I still had my beloved pony, Mr. Bojangles (he could jump 3 feet). I got him in the 5th grade. He won me several very prized blue ribbons! He was about 14 years old. We would let him go loose on our trail rides around my house. He would follow us like a dog. He had a problem one night and died several days later. I am pretty sure it was due to the heat. He was my buddy.

Here in Michigan, in the hottest part of the summer, our herd gets a nice cooling bath in the afternoon.
 

Cjskip
Breeding Stock
Username: Cjskip

Post Number: 286
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Thursday, April 24, 2008 - 04:10 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jane, I'm sorry your pony friend died so tragically.

Thank-you all for the suggestions. I'm trying to figure out how to keep cool water available, since water warms so quickly. Even if set up with a hose/float system, it will still be warm becasue the water in the hose is warm.

I do have a portable mister I plan on using and I will install a more permanent one this summer.

Thanks again, all!
 

Jenni Luttrell
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bugrace2000

Post Number: 1004
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Thursday, April 24, 2008 - 01:23 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I clipped my little guy as we are already seeing some 80 degree days not to mention the humidity. it seemed to help as his little pony foal coat was so thick
 

Cyndy Wiser
Yearling
Username: Cyndy

Post Number: 91
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Thursday, April 24, 2008 - 01:56 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

CJ, living in Texas we not only have a lot of 100 degree days, but we usually have humidity in the 80+ percentages, which really increases the heat index. I agree with Catherine in that good hydration is one of the, if not the most important things. Shade from trees or a run in shelter are helpful, but, these horses don't always take advantage of that.

My herd has both available, but generally will stay in the sun for the most part. I wouldn't worry too much about the water temp if you have a large (deep) water trough. Although the water may be warm when it comes out (using a float system), generally the amount coming in isn't so much that it would raise the entire temp of the water. My guys usually root & slosh in the water anyways first to clear the surface of contaminants and end up drinking from below the surface.

Lastly, I too hose my guys down in the evenings to help cool them off.
 

Cjskip
Breeding Stock
Username: Cjskip

Post Number: 303
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Friday, April 25, 2008 - 01:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Sounds like very good advice Cyndy. Thanks! When I used to have horses I lived in a cooler climate, so no worries. Whew. So much to think about! But it's all good. Gotta love our equine friends!
 

Cyndy Wiser
Breeding Stock
Username: Cyndy

Post Number: 101
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Friday, April 25, 2008 - 11:50 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yes we do. Like Bobbi said in her wonderful post earlier this week, they are amazing creatures that are incredibly tough but yet at the same time so very fragile.
 

Bobbi Govro
Breeding Stock
Username: Hh_farms

Post Number: 320
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Friday, April 25, 2008 - 03:43 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Cyndy: You and I live in the same climate and what you do for yours is exactly what I do for mine. I would be somewhat hesitant to shave or clip mine as sometimes their down hair provides for some protection against the flies and other biting creatures they contend with.

My horses slop in the trough also, but when they are in the fields with the ponds, its so much better because they take a swim. My gelding is hysterical as he is my "water baby" and he will go out in the middle of the pond and make such a ruckus so that he soaks himself from head to tail.

The hose baths are a pleasure and all you have to do is pick it up and they're standing in line for it.

We just make sure when the temp is hot and the humidity is high that we don't do any intensive training/riding during the heat of the day.
 

Jenni Luttrell
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bugrace2000

Post Number: 1017
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Saturday, April 26, 2008 - 02:46 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I dont trim my big horses but its been a few days since I clipped little Catcher although I didnt take off Much he isnt panting near as much and seems much more comfortable



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