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Milk test strips

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » General Mare Questions - Volume 2 » Milk test strips « Previous Next »


Author Message
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 2
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 02:29 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jos- we have a mini mare we bought not sure if in foal, but now am positive is. the thing is we have a due "timeline" of July 1 to the end of September. She is showing a lot of signs of being "any day now" But I am looking to narrow it down, as she's been looking like that for a month! Are the milk testing strips a reliable indicator of foaling imminence? How about the water hardness strips I've seen talked about? I may not be able to get the mare ones locally, but I know I can get the water ones. Has anyone used or seen them used with luck/accuracy? Are they worth investing? We've been looking at getting a monitor too, but we have problems with line of sight, and a steel clad barn. Thanks
 

Holly
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bonny

Post Number: 2154
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 09:24 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

i used the hard water strips this time foaling out my shetland. I will tell you, the PH was very accurate, however feeding alfalfa will increase the calcium in the mares 'milk' giving a false reading of her having more calcium, and the test results will say her Calcium is in foaling range. the PH reading is the key.
Basically, the strips I got were from walmart. The hardness pad is what you look at for the calcium reading. When it reads roughly 400 the mare is 'close'. The PH will read high 7's -8.4. The ph will drop to under 7 and she will foal soon.
To get a proper test use 1/2 cc mares milk to 1%1/2 cc distilled water. ( 1 cc milk to 3 cc distilled water)
My experience was that my mare started to drop in ph 48 hrs prior to foaling, 24 hrs before foaling she tested 6.4 on ph. NOT all mares will follow this, could be longer could be shorter time frame. My mares milk also got extremely sticky, and went from salty to bland to sweet in this time frame.

Best wishes for your mare. Please post pictures we would love to see her!
 

Holly
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bonny

Post Number: 2155
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 09:29 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Sorry let me re word...Feeding alfalfa CAN increase calcium levels in the mares milk, causing the test to react to this rise, which is not a false result, but will make the reliability of the test, based on reading calcium levels for predicting foaling, inaccurate ....So watching the PH is the key .....

(Message edited by Bonny on July 19, 2010)

(Message edited by Bonny on July 19, 2010)
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 2953
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 10:50 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

We do not use test strips or kits, but rely on visual observation of the milk along with observation of overall body condition and behaviour. I will therefore let others (such as Holly, thank you) respond to the specifics of the question.
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 3
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 01:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks Holly!
I will get out to Walmart ASAP- we're about an hour from the nearest one, so it'll have to be tommorrow. I tried milking her a bit this morning to make sure i could get some milk from her to test, and it's at the yelowy sticky thick stage, so we shouldn't be far! How do you post photos on this thing?? (I'm quite new to technology out here in the boonies!)
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 4
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 01:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jos - didn't mean not to recognize your advise as well, thanks for the article! The reason I was looking specifically for info on the strips is that I've been told that minis on the whole do not bag up, wax, drip milk as consisitently as "regular" mares. Most, from my understanding, do not bag up until post foaling. Being new to the breed, of course this had me nervous- all my tried and true watch for signals went out the window! Add to that what I'm reading about the higher rates of dysocia and red bagging, and I'm a bit more jumpy than usual. Would like to have a live healthy baby, would LOVE to be there for our first mini birth!
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 2954
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 02:37 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

There is a detailed description of linking to photos in the help section of the board.

Good luck with your foaling! :-)
 

Holly
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bonny

Post Number: 2156
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 02:44 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I post direct links from photobucket for pictures.
Sounds like she may be close!
Remember its very important to use DISTILLED water as the test will be different if you do not use it!
Best wishes and let us know what the test says!!
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 3528
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 - 11:26 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I would go to cole parmer and buy the water hardness strips.....extremely accurate!! I have never tested ph...just milk calcium
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 3529
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Tuesday, July 20, 2010 - 01:59 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Shari, honestly, you still watch for all the same signs...it's not that different than foaling the biggies. I have only once had a mini mare wax, but they have all bagged up and had milk (aside from one, and who knows why)This year they were all a little last minute bringing in the milk...and i dont' know why that happened either. If you can look at a mares backend, and vulva, and udder and know she'll foal...you'll do fine with the minis as well. The milk testing is very helpful, as mini maidens tend to be overly dramatic! LOL They can make you think everynight is the night haha! Just trust your own judgement, keep with what you know, and you'll do fine....minis haven't changed the game that much. I have also never had/seen a redbag foal, and only had 2 (bad enough to need intervention) dystocias in 8 yrs breeding them. Hopefully, you'll have very good luck with your foaling! Bring us pics!!
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 5
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Tuesday, July 20, 2010 - 03:41 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks ladies! I am headed to Walmart tommorrow, this mare seems determined to mess with me. At tonight's check, her rear end seems to have tightened from last night??? I have put up some of the pictures I have been snapping to keep a bit of a log on changes, so check them out, let me know what you think-they're labelled with dates. Jos, the words "easy to follow", are relative when you are as computer illiterat as I, so forgive me if I "link" this wrong. I'll do my best!
{www.photobucket.com/springbank}
Dear God, let that work! - it didn't- it told me i only provided one argument?What does that mean? let's see if I can figure this...................
Kay I retyped it, let's try this
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 6
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Tuesday, July 20, 2010 - 03:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hooray!! It worked. Let me know if you can view the pictures. Phew. Well, since I'm up anyways, may as well go check momma once more.
 

Holly
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bonny

Post Number: 2157
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Tuesday, July 20, 2010 - 09:57 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hehehe, sounds like your having the same fun I did with my mare. :-)
She is very cute BTW! What is her Name? Is she a maiden?
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 7
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Wednesday, July 21, 2010 - 03:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Her name is Country Lanes Blue Renaissance- By DBFS Blue and Gold (blue roan)And out of Lucky Hart's Talahassie Lassie. She's bred to a palomino son of Buckaroo. (Now you know why I want to see this foal alive and well!) I can't wait to see what colour it is. Any bets? She had 1 foal at least three years ago (she's eight now, and her first was a buckskin and white pinto filly, by a cremello) so not maiden, jest sneaky.
Well, I went to the city, and in my rush to get all my errands done(we're an hour out, so we don't get in often)I forgot the strips! I made a detour on the way home and stopped at our local Home Hardare, but the only ones they carried tested PH but not calcium.
THEN, I got home and realized I forgot distilled water! My husband said our bottled water from Culligan would probably be just as good, so I used that, and her PH is definetely in the 8.4 category. I will pick up distilled tommorrow and test again, but it looks like for tonight anyways, I can go to bed!We'll see how it plays out.
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 3530
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Wednesday, July 21, 2010 - 09:10 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Oh wow!!!! I can't wait to see it now! Palomino and roan...who knows what you'll come up with!! Buckeroo is awesome!!! Your mare still looks to have some time left to me.....but no, the Culligan won't test accurately, at least not for the calcium test.
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 8
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Wednesday, July 21, 2010 - 11:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's what I figured. I'm gonna pick up some distilled today, got some fencing first, and I'll test again. Keep you posted!
 

Holly
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Bonny

Post Number: 2159
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Wednesday, July 21, 2010 - 02:09 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yea I didnt try different water for the PH... so I wouldnt know.
Yes keep us UTD!
Cant wait to see your foal...!
 

Shari Chubaty
Neonate
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 9
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Saturday, July 31, 2010 - 01:30 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hello all! Haven't posted in a while- been busy trying to get our new barn cam up and operational. Have you noticed a correlation between the mares milk PH and the taste? Salty, sweet, etc. I know it's gross, but I did do it! Still salty, still high PH, but her bag is about 3/4 full I'd say, and ROCK HARD! Not much longer now I hope!
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 3532
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Saturday, July 31, 2010 - 02:13 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

when it's not salty anymore, you'll get your foal VERY soon....hoping for the best for you
 

Shari Chubaty
Nursing Foal
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 11
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Monday, August 09, 2010 - 06:50 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hallo! WELL- haven't posted in over a week! Our computer went down last Saturday, and I just got it back today. What a day for it to blow-Piper foaled Saturday morning!
i was out there Friday messing with the camera-tested her milk, still high PH, tasted still salty, came in, did some computer stuff till 3- checked her again, nothing. Went to bed. Checked at 8 am- no foal, the kids all went for early naps, so I layed down. I happened to look out at 11:30 when my husband came in for lunch, and there she was!! It's a girl! That sneaky lady. Plus, she had her on the opposite side of the pen, outside, by herself, all is fine. Well I ran out there, and baby was still a bit wet, but had nursed, passed meconium, and her umbilicus looked nice. Sheesh. All that and I missed the whole thing. I will post photos yet on photobucket. She is a puzzlement as to colour! But yay! a girl!
 

Pam Romjue
Breeding Stock
Username: Pammysue

Post Number: 105
Registered: 03-2010
Posted on Monday, August 09, 2010 - 07:35 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Congrats Shari!!! How exciting! Can't wait to see pictures!!!
 

Shari Chubaty
Nursing Foal
Username: Springbank

Post Number: 12
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Tuesday, August 10, 2010 - 02:46 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks! I could not be more thrilled with this filly. Am just posting pictures on Photobucket- our album is springbankminis- same link as above, but here it is again- www.photobucket.com/springbank
I guess the strips are not infallable- her PH was still high, calcium had come up a bit. She did NOT wax, her milk was still watery and salty. I guess the minis CAN fool you. I will post a new thread on this filly under foals- her colour is a bit of a puzzle, check it out and take a guess!



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