Remy & Really Restrained via DuraCorral

When mares give birth, their natural instinct is to protect their foals, we would never turn a mare and foal out within a herd from day one and what makes our situation worse in March 2022 is the wet weather and muddy ground. We dare not risk any infection via an umbilical chord with the mud, therefore we have decided to invest in yet more DuraCorral panels to split the ménage into two…

This means not only does our ménage serve as a riding arena (when the daylight hours permit after normal human working hours) and it also refrains our horses eating/chewing the wooden rails but the best benefit at the present time during this awful weather is, it has allowed us to turn the two mares and foals out each evening, whilst we clear out their stables.

We are so close to that extra hour of daylight and irrespective of daylight the mares and foals are turned out daily , providing their bodies and minds with what we consider only of a positive nature.

Here are some images when Remy met Really, well to be honest the mares didn’t allow them to meet but nearly…

Redheart Mares – Counting down the foaling days 2022

The 5 Redheart broodmares are looking great, feeling fine and totally relaxed in their routine as we start to count down the days to foaling and pray for the safe arrival of our 2022 foals.

We are expecting two foals from Reus and three foals from Blu, all have full siblings except Reus x Ghost, this will be our first ever Foundation Appaloosa Horse Registry (FAHR) foal from our Catori line. It goes without saying, all we want is a healthy new-born but we would be blessed to see a filly delivered. A filly would be retained for our future breeding plan with Fire or Blu, continuing our path of the UK’s Foundation Appaloosa Stud.

Counting down the foaling days 2022 

 

 

The Class of 2021 – The Window of opportunity…

We initially rely on our mares to help teach the foals to lead and stand.
We take full advantage of a small window of opportunity when the foals only want to follow their dams, when the apron’s strings are broken they are happy to be lead alone.

The Class of 2021 – The First Blade of Grass…

After days out in the ménage the next step for our 2021 foals is turn out in a small paddock. It is hard for them to understand why their dams just want to eat after a quick check of the boundary, a gradual reintroduction to grass for the mares is especially important.
 
After they settle and their heads go down, we wonder what the first blade of grass tastes like for a foal?
 
We are in May and Spring has not arrived, the days have been OK, but the nights are still too cold and wet to leave the foals out. Since birth, each mare and foal have increased time out over a two week period, building up the length of time to reach a full days grazing before coming in for the night.

 

The Class of 2021 – The First Turn-out

In conjunction with Farm & Stable Supplies for supporting the Appaloosa Horse Club (ApHC) UK 2021 Photo Competition. Thank you 🙂

There is no doubt turnout is best for new-born foals, enabling them to develop physically and mentally. All our mare’s and foals have individual turnout in the safety area of the duracorral before they are turned out in the field together.

Here are the first few days of their lives outside the barn…

 

The Class 2021 – THE FIRST 48 HOURS

In conjunction with Farm & Stable Supplies for supporting the Appaloosa Horse Club (ApHC) UK 2021 Photo Competition. Thank you 🙂

Can you imagine being born within 4 walls and then the door is opened, a new environment awaits you but also the realisation of what your legs are for…

Our post foaling check list is quite extensive, but only then can we relax and enjoy our foals knowing we have done our best to ensure their well-being.

Here are some clips from The Class of 2021, showing their characters within in the first 48hrs of life outside the stable.

Here is a little video:

The Class of 2021 – STAGE 3 – Passing The Placenta

In conjunction with Farm & Stable Supplies for supporting the Appaloosa Horse Club (ApHC) UK 2021 Photo Competition. Thank you 🙂

STAGE 3 of foaling is known as delivery of the placenta. The mare’s uterus continues to contract after foaling which causes the placenta to be expelled BUT so much more happens before the placenta is expelled.

So, the foals are safely out, either our mares get up or our foals crawl to their dam’s head but either way the umbilical cord breaks and the foals begin their first mission, to get to their feet. Their second mission is to find the milk bar, both missions are challenging, we only intervene if required to do so.

Our mares’ bond with their foals by licking, nuzzling, and nickering to them, it is wonderful to watch.

During the processes of the foals’ natural instincts, to stand and feed, the mare’s body is constantly experiencing the pain of contractions, the ultimate result we wait for is a placenta that is completely intact.

Once we are satisfied the foal has properly latched on and nursed, the foal has urinated and passed the meconium and most of all the placenta is intact, only then do we leave them, knowing we have done everything possible to ensure a great start to their new life.

Here’s a little video:

The Class 2021 – STAGE 2 FOALING

In conjunction with Farm & Stable Supplies for supporting the Appaloosa Horse Club (ApHC) UK  2021 Photo Competition. Thank you 🙂

As the contraction persist, we witness the bulge of the white fluid-filled amniotic sac from the vulva followed by every breeder’s delight, two front feet and a nose. We wait and watch and talk to our mares, we know our mares well and they need to know I am there.

As the contraction persist, the feet and nose pop in and out of their vulvas, it is common for a mare to get up and back down as she repositions her foal for ease of delivery. The head and front feet are now out… Then, a few hard pushes that result in the shoulders passing through the birth canal and eventually the foal is out!

Telling them how well they have done and keeping everything calm, they whinny and look at their new-born and stay lying down which is beneficial for the foal to receive as much blood as possible to pass through the umbilical cord.

Right or wrong, we always pull out the back feet out, we know too many stories of foals trying to crawl whilst the feet are inside the mare whilst she is led down, the result can be detrimental to the mare, so we take no risks.

Whilst the foal is out, we gently clear the nasal passage of any fluid, imprint them before the mares get up or the foal crawl to the mares head and allow the bonding process to begin.

Either the mare will stay down, and the foal will start to crawl towards her, or the mare will get up and their first meet is just beautiful. This is their first bond, all our mares are great mothers, they are kind and do their foals well, we leave them bond.

Here’s a little video: