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Mare rejecting foal

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » Foaling and Immediate Post-foaling Issues » Mare rejecting foal « Previous Next »


Author Message
 

Anonymous
 
Posted on Monday, July 11, 2005 - 02:36 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi guys,
I have seen from past experiences that mares usually bond to their young in the first few hours of their lives. What could be the reason for a mare rejecting her foal and refusing to nurse?
 

Lisa Z
Neonate
Username: Megagain

Post Number: 6
Registered: 06-2005
Posted on Monday, July 11, 2005 - 08:41 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I had a maiden mare reject her palomino filly. I THINK it was because the filly was almost white. She would attack the filly any time she crossed the mares line of vision. The next foal was a dark chestnut filly and we had no problems.
 

Renee Clover
Neonate
Username: Reneec

Post Number: 2
Registered: 07-2005
Posted on Monday, July 11, 2005 - 09:36 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If the mare was a maiden mare, then sometimes they will see the foal as "what caused all that pain" and they may attack it, or just not be interested in it, these mares will often come around with some encouragement. The same can happen if the mare experienced a difficult birthing. Also if the mare is too young and immature (still just a baby herself) she can also reject her foal. There are a few factors, and i am sure plenty more than i have said. Do you have a mare that has rejected her foal??
 

Anonymous
 
Posted on Monday, July 11, 2005 - 11:00 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

No, not as yet. I am planning to foal my thirteen year old Quarter horse x Arabian mare. But I have seen it recently happen to some one else. I was just wondering what the cause could be. Thank you for your posts and valuable advice because now I can be prepared since my mare is a maiden.
 

Ssuziec (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Tuesday, July 12, 2005 - 11:15 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi All,
My mare has always been very particular about who she will socialise with (& allow to be anywhere near her) and has a major heightism problem - anything smaller than her has to be able to run away fast & stay away.
So we were concerned that she may reject her foal (she was a maiden), however she took almost straight to him, she cleaned him off immediately and just lay there staring at him as if working out what he was. she wouldnt let him feed intially & got very frustrated when he wouldn't stand up, so I had to interviene & hold him up, then I had to force her to stand still & let him feed, after about 30-45mins of this she realised it wasnt so bad (the total time I was monitoring & occassionally assiting was nearly 4 hours) - now they are inseperable.
My advice would be to try to be there at the birthing & have a "feel" for when you need to step in & help & when to leave them to work it out (to recouperate & bond).
Best of luck, i'm sure they'll be fine.
 

Anonymous
 
Posted on Tuesday, July 12, 2005 - 09:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thank you for your advice. I'm sure we'll be okay now.
 

Connie Micheletti (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Friday, July 22, 2005 - 02:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I once had a maiden who was happy to allow her foal to nurse but kicked him when he went behind (without doing damage luckily) because he frightened her. Since then I try to be sure that my maiden mares get the opportunity to observe foals before they themselves foal. I pasture them next to mares with young foals and so far it seems to work. This year one maiden was a long time letting her foal nurse because she wanted to keep him front of her and turned toward him whenever he approached the udder. Since she wasn't being aggressive I decided not to interfere and wait awhile. Everything worked out fine.
 

Rooty (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Saturday, July 23, 2005 - 10:30 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yes, I prefer that my maidens do a babysitter course before I breed them!
Our maiden who foaled this year kept trying to keep her foal in front of her too, so we just held her until he had nursed twice successfully and have had no problems.
 

Anonymous
 
Posted on Monday, October 31, 2005 - 04:22 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi I work at a Breeeding facility and we recently had a Paint mare reject her foal, It was a difficult birth and I think very painfull for her we tryed to put the baby with her but she wanted to kill itso we have been bottle feeding and trying to introduce a nurse mare.has anyone had any experience introducing nursemares and getting them to come back into lactation? this mare was weaned about 3 weeks ago from her 4 mt old baby and has lost her bag for the most part but we are trying to get her to bag up again.she is doing well with the foal and protects him but gets a bit cranky about nursing. any Ideas? thanks
 

LRidgeway
Yearling
Username: Laurie

Post Number: 69
Registered: 04-2005
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2005 - 05:11 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There is a shot you can give that can supposedly increase milk flow, you might want to discuss it with your vet.

In the meantime, I would just leave the foal with his foster dam and supplement 3-4 times a day with a bucket of foal lac.

If she develops more milk then you can ease off on the bucket, although do continue to offer it when you notice the foal going through a growth spurt.
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Jos

Post Number: 10340
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2005 - 07:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The drug most commonly used to stimulate milk production (and mammary development) in the USA is "Domperidone". I am unsure if that is available in the Southern Hemisphere, but I suspect it is. A series of treatments is required (generally 7-10 days) for full effect. In the short term, oxytocin can be used to cause milk let-down, but the mammary gland has to be developed and producing before the oxytocin will work.

I would encourage you to not feed from a bucket if you are going to use a milk replacer, as once the foal starts drinking from a bucket, its suckle reflex will decline. This has a double whammy - firstly of course it will be less inclined to nurse, but also the lack of nursing will cause a reduction in subsequent milk production by the mare. Unless you are going to wean the foal onto milk replacer completely, I would encourage you to use a bottle at the moment and make the baby drink from it rather than a bucket.
 

Donna Shelatree
Neonate
Username: Dshelatree

Post Number: 3
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 12:31 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Has anyone heard of using the drug fluphazine decanoate to help a maiden mare that is rejecting her first foal?
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Jos

Post Number: 10454
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 12:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Fluphenazine Decanoate.

May assist, may not, but worth a go if other options have failed.
 

Donna Shelatree
Neonate
Username: Dshelatree

Post Number: 4
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 12:48 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks, Jos. I passed on that information.
 

Gynna Meiller
Breeding Stock
Username: Jw_kings_excalibur

Post Number: 104
Registered: 11-2005
Posted on Friday, February 17, 2006 - 06:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If you were closer I have a nurse maid that would love a foal...
 

KARA PANNELL
Neonate
Username: Billsgal

Post Number: 1
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, April 02, 2006 - 10:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have a Maiden mare that foaled 1 night ago without us knowing.
We found him the next morning standing all alone.
Generally the mare is extremely docile and sweet.
I am shocked she does not want to nurse him.
We have been going in every 2 hours to hold her for him to nurse.
She will not attact him, but DOES NOT LIKE him, she will move away , and kick and bite, not letting him nurse on his own , but will let him stay in the same pen without hurting him , so long as he does not bother her or touch her.
ANY SUGGESTIONS PLEASE!!!
Do I continue to hold her to nurse, and her how long and how often now? (I am so tired\clipart)
{ohno}
If it has been 36 hours, what is the likely hood of her changing her mind?}}
 

KARA PANNELL
Neonate
Username: Billsgal

Post Number: 2
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, April 02, 2006 - 10:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have a Maiden mare that foaled 1 night ago without us knowing.
We found him the next morning standing all alone.
Generally the mare is extremely docile and sweet.
I am shocked she does not want to nurse him.
We have been going in every 2 hours to hold her for him to nurse.
She will not attact him, but DOES NOT LIKE him, she will move away , and kick and bite, not letting him nurse on his own , but will let him stay in the same pen without hurting him , so long as he does not bother her or touch her.
ANY SUGGESTIONS PLEASE!!!
Do I continue to hold her to nurse, and her how long and how often now? (I am so tired)
If it has been 36 hours, what is the likely hood of her changing her mind?}}
 

Joanna
Breeding Stock
Username: Joanna

Post Number: 110
Registered: 04-2005
Posted on Sunday, April 02, 2006 - 05:00 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Some maidens do take a long time to come around. My vet says that as long as the baby got ample amounts of colostrum, and is getting to nurse every two to three hours, than you should give the mare 48 hours to come around. If in that time she has not excepted the foal, than call your vet and decide what needs to be done next. (i.e. milk replacer, nurse mare, ect.)
 

Heather Kutyba
Breeding Stock
Username: Heatherck11

Post Number: 164
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Sunday, April 02, 2006 - 08:05 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Kara,
I'm really sorry 'bout the situation. With all hope, she will improve. In the mean time, you may have to get tough on this mare so she doesn't hurt her baby when he attempts to nurse, etc.
Yes, continue to hold her....if you have to, twitch her, tie her, whatever.
I know how tired you are, but that mare has to allow the foal to nurse. The more he nurses, the more likely she is to accept him.
It would also be of great asset if the foal had a "safe zone"....a place where he could get away if she goes for him, that the mare can't get him (if possible).
You may want to start thinking about teaching him how to drink foal milk replacer out of a bucket. This way, you will know that he is getting enough to eat, and won't have to necessarily nurse as frequently (and you can get some sleep).
It would be prudent not to leave them unattended until things settle down. Is there anyone who can help you monitor them so you can rest for a few hours at least?
 

Leonard Kistner
Neonate
Username: Len

Post Number: 9
Registered: 04-2005
Posted on Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - 05:36 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If the mare won't let the foal nurse,then it didn't get any Colostrum. That window is long gone. You need to get a Vet out and transfuse the foal. Holding the mare is all well and good but for how long? Putting up a board so as to restrict her movement and use hay bales behind her so the foal can't get behind her would help. That way the foal can nurse and they can still be together. Mares do come around after a few days.
 

Kathee McGuire
Breeding Stock
Username: Katheekj

Post Number: 305
Registered: 12-2005
Posted on Tuesday, April 04, 2006 - 05:48 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Kara...any update on the situation?
 

Susan Lea
Neonate
Username: Brandysgrandma

Post Number: 1
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, April 30, 2006 - 08:39 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi, I just found this forum and hope someone can give me advice. My 7 year old black TWH mare had her first foal the day after Easter (2 weeks old tomorrow). She had a bit of difficulty, and the QH breeder I board with had to help deliver the foal, a buckskin filly, Brandy. My friend eventually said we had to help Brandy stand and nurse as it was an hour and she hadn't managed yet. Angel, my mare, cocked a leg, but didn't kick, and after supervision the first time, accepted Brandy nursing. She stayed in the stall for 24 hours before going out in the grass arena. At first she tried to keep Brandy away from the other horses that came up to the fence, but eventually accepted them. Once she "lost" Brandy in the arena when she was sleeping, but looked for her and found her. When I put Angel in the crossties to clean her hind legs, she was upset and nickered for Brandy, who was in the stall. Friday we put them in the round pen for several hours; Angel ignored the other horses when they came around. After they left, we let her out into the field, but she galloped off and left Brandy. Brandy was upset and galloping around calling her mother. We had to follow Angel so Brandy would follow us and find her mother. At that point we hid ourselves. Angel then let Brandy nurse, but continued grazing when 3 other horses came up. When one mare kicked Brandy, Angel finally came up and ran them off. We thought all was okay then, and I had to leave. Several hours later my friend looked and found Angel eating hay with the other horses and Brandy nowhere in sight. She got Angel on a lead and walked all over the field and finally found her at the extreme other end of the 40-acre field in the woods asleep. Angel was completely unaffected and unworried. She nickered a bit when they found Brandy, but seemed totally unconcerned that she lost her baby. My friend says they can't be turned out in the field unless someone (that means me) is there to supervise and be sure Brandy doesn't get lost. I agree with her and will go there as often as I can, but I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas why this would happen after 2 weeks and if there's anything to do to make a mare care about protecting and staying with her foal? Excuse the long story!
 

kimberly kidd
Neonate
Username: Kimberkdd

Post Number: 1
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 09:03 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

hi my horse just had a foal about 2 hrs ago and she wont let it nurse she protects it but goes in circles when it trys to eat
 

Lisa Z
Nursing Foal
Username: Megagain

Post Number: 14
Registered: 06-2005
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 09:33 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If she has bonded to the foal enough to try and protect it, it sounds like her udders are just very sensitive. This would especially be a problem if it is her first foal. You could try restraining her by tying her head or holding her with a shank over her nose, and the letting the foal try to approach. A twitch may also help distract her long enough for the foal to nurse a bit and relieve the pressure on the udder.
 

SANDY WEIDEMAN
Nursing Foal
Username: Codiie

Post Number: 12
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 11:28 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Susan Lea,
I have a mare that does the same thing... she will not call to her distraut filly or anything, she just goes and eats like nothing is happening.. It is very frustrating, she loves her baby and takes good care of her otherwise,but when around other horses, she ignores her... and my filly runs around calling to her mom and cant figure out which one she is... it is too strange...
 

Donna Shelatree
Neonate
Username: Dshelatree

Post Number: 5
Registered: 09-2005
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 12:32 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Kimberly, How is you mare doing with her foal? I just wanted you to know that we've had some mares that we've had to "hold" for several feedings before they "stood" for the baby to nurse. As soon as the foal is sure where to find the milk, you'll be surprised how persistant they are at "running mom down".

As long as your mare isn't being agressive to the foal, but is just walking in circles when the foal tries to nurse......you have a wonderful chance of getting them bonded and nursing normally..
 

Susan Lea
Neonate
Username: Brandysgrandma

Post Number: 5
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 09:31 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Sandy,
Thanks so much! I had almost given up looking for an answer. I guess misery loves company--glad to know mine's not the only one! Brandy was 4 weeks old last week and we could finally start turning them out unsupervised. Maybe all the hours in the stall or riding ring together helped them figure out they need to stay close together? The only mare who was ever aggressive to Brandy is on stall rest for an injury, so she's out of the herd for now. The others are youngsters or former mommies, and they accept Brandy fine. She eats, then goes and visits the other mares, then goes back to Angel to eat! It's actually kind of funny to watch, as long as I'm not afraid that another horse will kick Brandy! Angel keeps an eye on her, but doesn't stress out when Brandy "visits." Thanks again for the input.
 

Susan Lea
Neonate
Username: Brandysgrandma

Post Number: 6
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Sunday, May 21, 2006 - 09:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

PS Sandy,
I don't know your mare's history, but mine's a TWH who was raised in a show barn. They apparently never get turned out in a herd, just a short time in a round pen. My friend that I board with and I were thinking that maybe they never got a chance to learn as babies by watching their mothers, so maybe they have to learn it as they go along. Plus she's a maiden mare. Do you know your mare's history?
 

Julie Bass
Neonate
Username: Jabass

Post Number: 1
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Friday, May 26, 2006 - 11:52 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Help! I just purchased a very pregnant mare at an auction 2 weeks ago. The owner said she is due to foal by Aug 1st. This would be her first. She is just alittle over 2 years. I am worried how she is going to handle all of this. Since this will be my first time as well. Can somebody tell me the signs and what I should do? Is she to young? I would appreciate any help and advise somebody could give me. She is not broke yet. I can get a halter on her after alot of coaxing, but she is not easy to catch. Right now I have her in a 1/2 acre pasture. Should I confine her? My farrier said it looks as if she could go sooner than August and that I better get ready. Please advise.
 

Amanda Gilbert
Weanling
Username: Amanda

Post Number: 24
Registered: 11-2005
Posted on Friday, May 26, 2006 - 12:28 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I would call your vet and have them check her for you. They can also help you with what you should do to help her get ready for foaling.
 

Jennifer S
Nursing Foal
Username: Jens

Post Number: 16
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Wednesday, May 31, 2006 - 06:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Julie,
Buy every book you can about pregnancy & foaling (vet authors are good) & read...as much as possible. Hopefully everything will be alright, but know as much as you can. Get the recommended supplies & keep them in a very convienient location. Good Luck!



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