My Mare is Possibly Pregnant.

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Pitter Patter

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Just purchased this little girl a couple of weeks ago. Previous owner wasn't sure if she was pregnant or not. Watched her eating this morning and could swear I saw movement, but is it only wishful thinking? I can't yet get a picture of her udder or her vulva because she kicks anytime I show interest in her belly or back end but will keep trying. She's a bit crabby overall. Don't know if this is her norm or if she is crabby because she is pregnant. I have included some pictures..She is 36" and it wouldn't be her first. If pregnant, she would have been exposed in June sometime.
 

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pondfire.farm

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Welcome, Pitter Patter! I think you will love this forum! I'm pretty new here too and just brought my first mini home several weeks ago. Your mare is pretty as a picture! I've found these good folks to be just that - great folks! So far, I've received a very warm and friendly welcome; gotten great advice and words of encouragment! Just jump on in with questions and comments!

LeighAnne, aka pondfire
 

Pitter Patter

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Thanks! I have been reading everything I can find from this site and others. Wonderful sources of information! I have had a little stallion for almost two years now. He is a doll. But these mares...a whole different thing apparently! Stallion will be getting fixed as soon as this COVID-19 thing clears up.
 

Taz

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oops, not good at this. The pictures above are my mini mare from 2 years ago. I thought she was in foal but she didn't look it at all. The first two pictures were about 6 weeks before foaling, the third about 3 weeks. This wasn't her first foal. I am very much not one of the experts but I would suggest treating her as if she's in foal until you know she isn't.

I do know something about horse behavior though:). The crankiness could be her normal but could be her not trusting/knowing you yet. I would only handle her when she was agreeing with it. If she looks away from you at any point when you go towards her, stop and wait till she looks at you again to go closer/ touch her. If she doesn't like you going past her shoulder just lean that way a bit then back off right away until you can start moving a hand back them away. It doesn't normally take very long to get them more comfortable. Treats are always good as a reward every time they let you do something they don't like if you want to go the route too.

Good luck and welcome to the club of "who gets a pregnant mare during a pandemic" as a friend of mine said to me 3 weeks ago when I got my little rescue. I'm doing foal watch now
 

HannaHH

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Hey I'm in the exact same boat! I brought Bea home two months ago and I'm convinced now that she's pregnant, her old owner wasn't sure either. The first time I saw those belly movements Bea was kicking at them and seamed very thrown off, I've seen them a couple of times now though and she doesn't care much anymore. My girl is pretty sassy and was definitely unsure about me touching her belly when I first got her, but I groom her almost every day and she's learned to love the attention :)
 

Pitter Patter

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oops, not good at this. The pictures above are my mini mare from 2 years ago. I thought she was in foal but she didn't look it at all. The first two pictures were about 6 weeks before foaling, the third about 3 weeks. This wasn't her first foal. I am very much not one of the experts but I would suggest treating her as if she's in foal until you know she isn't.

I do know something about horse behavior though:). The crankiness could be her normal but could be her not trusting/knowing you yet. I would only handle her when she was agreeing with it. If she looks away from you at any point when you go towards her, stop and wait till she looks at you again to go closer/ touch her. If she doesn't like you going past her shoulder just lean that way a bit then back off right away until you can start moving a hand back them away. It doesn't normally take very long to get them more comfortable. Treats are always good as a reward every time they let you do something they don't like if you want to go the route too.

Good luck and welcome to the club of "who gets a pregnant mare during a pandemic" as a friend of mine said to me 3 weeks ago when I got my little rescue. I'm doing foal watch now
 

Pitter Patter

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I am trying to gain her trust bit by bit and can pick up all four feet and brush her down her back and sides but I cannot linger there at all. I quit bringing treats in with me because I am literally mugged by 3 minis when I do and the pushiest is the one pictured and she is bigger and I am 5'. I usually let them come to me on their own terms and then I can see who likes what (other than treats!). This is not to say they don't get any treats...they do, just not all the time, every time like they were used. Last time I ran out of treats she left me and while I was scratching the other two I didn't realize she backed up behind me and kicked me behind the knees. She has improved but just needs time. Just a little nervous about assisting with foaling because of the kicking, but maybe she will be unable or too uncomfortable to care about kicking at the time!
 

Taz

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Oh, that hurts!
It sounds like you're doing great, you'll get her :). I really hope she doesn't need any help foaling.... I have no idea if she will be more willing to be handled while foaling but I know there are great people here who can give you advise about that.
 

MyBarakah

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If she's pregnant she wouldn't be very far along. If she's touchy about her udders make it a daily routine of tying her up and rubbing her back in. I like to use treats and reward her for when she will stand and let me feel.
Here's a Shetland mare that's due soon...they get pretty big before they foal.
 

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Pitter Patter

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Thanks for all the advice! I wish I had more time to work with her but this darn Northern Michigan weather isn't helping in the least (snow and high winds). I will try to get a better backside picture of her tonight when I get home from work and hopefully be able to tie her up and start working with her more. I have another question though, and it's a silly one....I know she is a miniature horse, but what differentiates a miniature from a Shetland? Is it breeding, size, both? My mare is 36" (The one pictured in previous post). Thanks!
 

Maryann at MiniV

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Miniature Horses actually ALL have some Shetland in their background. It's how minis were started. They are a man-made height breed. To be REGISTERED as Shetland they have to be traced back as such via papers and/or DNA testing. You can have a full Shetland measure in at 36" and they can also be registered with AMHR....who have their own requirements.

I should have said this first -- Shetland ARE a BREED of PONY. Minis are a "height breed" only.
 

Pitter Patter

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Miniature Horses actually ALL have some Shetland in their background. It's how minis were started. They are a man-made height breed. To be REGISTERED as Shetland they have to be traced back as such via papers and/or DNA testing. You can have a full Shetland measure in at 36" and they can also be registered with AMHR....who have their own requirements.

I should have said this first -- Shetland ARE a BREED of PONY. Minis are a "height breed" only.
 

Pitter Patter

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Thank you so much! It seems like minis come in two basic body shapes--one like a scale model of a full size horse and the other with a "pony" type (short and stubby for lack of better words at the moment!)? Mine seem to be more of the latter.
 

Jodie

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Lol that made me chuckle as it is exactly the kind of thing I would do!
With the picture from behind, you could try standing quite far back, crouch right down to her level and take the photo like that. Then you can crop it so it’s easier to see. Something like this angle...

6FEBE734-03BA-47C2-8D26-1F4D75FE35A7.jpeg

Then you can see how her belly is sitting, and not worry about getting a hoof to the head (our little girl was nervous and kicked out a few times when we first got her). Hope this helps!
 

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