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Question about my mares stomach!

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luv2ridesaddleseat

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This is my mare and first mini. I got her in January. She will be 7 next month and has had 2 foals. The last one was 2 years ago. She was bred in October but is confirmed not in foal by my Vet by internal ultrasound. This mare came to me overweight and I am trying to get the weight off of her. My question is, is it normal for a young mare to have such a sagging belly? I could understand if she were an older broodmare. She is 32" and is a compact mare. Is this where overweight minis carry their extra weight? I don't give her any grain at all. I give her hay, and the best quality I can find. She is still covered in winter coat as it's still getting down into the 30's almost every night here, but it has thinned out a ton and I can totally tell, her belly isn't her coat. She does run around with my big mare during the day. I'm hoping to teach her to drive. Is there anything else I should be doing or feeding her differently?

Thanks for any suggestions!

 

txminipinto

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If your vet was wrong, that's still a lot of belly for the gestation. I have a mini here that just came in with a "sagging belly" and I really think it's from the lack of a proper diet. She's not fat, she has a hay belly. I would start increasing grain, cutting back on the hay, and start working her on a lounge line or in a round pen. I would also check her for sand as well.
 

luv2ridesaddleseat

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Thats my riding ring that I took the picture in. They're hardly ever in there. They have their own paddock but it's very shady and the pictures come out better in the ring as there is sunshine. I've had her to two Vets and they tell me NO GRAIN! I have wonderful green second cut hay. So we are supposed to feed minis the opposite of big horses? How much grain do you give a mini?

If your vet was wrong, that's still a lot of belly for the gestation. I have a mini here that just came in with a "sagging belly" and I really think it's from the lack of a proper diet. She's not fat, she has a hay belly. I would start increasing grain, cutting back on the hay, and start working her on a lounge line or in a round pen. I would also check her for sand as well.
 

Reignmaker Miniatures

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Are you absolutely positive that mare is not pregnant and due fairly soon? That sure looks like an expectant belly. Is it possible she was bred earlier than October? I would want to be really sure before I tried working it off of her or putting her on to restrictive a diet. Pretty mare btw.
 

luv2ridesaddleseat

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Thank you Reinmaker! She is a doll and I love her to peices!!! Can't wait to get rid of that darn winter coat though! All I can say is I bought her in January, former owner said she bred her the last week of October. I did a wee foal test in Feb. that came out positive. Did another one in April that came out negative. When my Vet, (well they sent the Vet who is new out of school) was here last month to do shots, I had her do an ultrasound. She didn't see a foal and said she was in heat. Thats about all I can tell you. I won't do anything drastic, thats for sure! I do find it interesting that the Vets say no grain! I don't know if I should be giving her grain or not.


Are you absolutely positive that mare is not pregnant and due fairly soon? That sure looks like an expectant belly. Is it possible she was bred earlier than October? I would want to be really sure before I tried working it off of her or putting her on to restrictive a diet. Pretty mare btw.
 

Miniv

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In my opinion, you are looking at two possibilities with your youngish mare.........

Either she's indeed pregnant -- and she DOES look it. (Vets can be wrong, you know.
) OR, at some point in her life she had a very poor diet (not enough protein) and her ribs have sprung!

Either way, she DOES need grain or a very high protein hay/alfalfa, plus supplements.

We owned a very lovely mare for 15 years who we purchased as a pregnant 3 year old. She had been poorly fed
because the previous owner was under the mistaken idea that this would create a smaller foal. Instead, the result was our beautiful girl had a pot-belly for the rest of her life and she foaled out a filly with a crooked leg -- which our vet said was caused from lack of nutrition. (She went on to foaling out several very HEALTHY babies for us, once we got her back on track.)
 

luv2ridesaddleseat

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I do know the former owner had all her minis outside 24/7 with round bales. NONE of her other horses looked overweight at all. Thats kind of strange. The second weefoal test was negative. I've never heard of a false negative with the weefoal tests. Before I had the Vet a couple of weeks ago do the ultrasound, I asked her if she would know for sure, or if I was going to hear, "well she could be, it just might be too small or some such other thing to find". She said she would be able to tell for sure without a doubt! She told me she was in heat. What is the best way to tell if these darn horses are pregnant or not anyway?? Do you think there is still a chance she is pregnant?

In my opinion, you are looking at two possibilities with your youngish mare.........

Either she's indeed pregnant -- and she DOES look it. (Vets can be wrong, you know.
) OR, at some point in her life she had a very poor diet (not enough protein) and her ribs have sprung!

Either way, she DOES need grain or a very high protein hay/alfalfa, plus supplements.

We owned a very lovely mare for 15 years who we purchased as a pregnant 3 year old. She had been poorly fed
because the previous owner was under the mistaken idea that this would create a smaller foal. Instead, the result was our beautiful girl had a pot-belly for the rest of her life and she foaled out a filly with a crooked leg -- which our vet said was caused from lack of nutrition. (She went on to foaling out several very HEALTHY babies for us, once we got her back on track.)
 

Bonny

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Blood work, Estrogen sulfate will detect a live foal. Have the vet draw blood and test for that.

Poor You! Sending you hugs!
 

Bonny

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I read on other sites that it can be difficult to see a foal by US towards the end of the gestation. Not sure how much truth there is to that but?
 

billiethekid40

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Well, I'm going to go "against the grain" here(pun intended). I think she does look very pregnant but by the sounds of what the vet says she is not. That said, she looks like she has more than just a hay belly, if you look at her rump and chest I'd say she is carrying more weight all over her than she should be, and putting her on grain is only going to increase the weight gain. Also, looking at the hay pictured, it at least LOOKS really nice. I'd say increasing her exercise is going to be a good first step... but like your vet I'd be hesitant to increase her grain.
 

CrescentMinis

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I feel your pain!

I have one that looks EXACTLY like that, was pasture bred so no definite due date (could even be into June), plus the vet palpated her in October and said NOT pregnant. Yet she's gotten bigger in the belly only, while fed quality food in the same amounts she always received. So what gives, huh? Oh, and this may make me sound like a crazy woman, but I am sure I was kicked hard by a foot when I was touching her lower flank last night; it was definitely different than a muscle spasm.

I wonder if the vet who did the ultrasound on your mare was confusing a baby part with something else....

Does your mare have any udder development? I would take pictures as you go along so you can compare later instead of going from memory. Wish I had done that sooner. I also think your mare looks like she would be a lot further along than the date the seller gave you.

I wanted to add, that on the other hand, my vet's opinion of the mare that looks just like yours (my daughter just saw the picture and said "is that Annie?") was that she needed feed cut back, and to be exercised every day; she even mentioned concern about her foundering because she is so overweight.
 
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Bonny

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Joyce,

can you post the pics of her from behind again so they can see how wide she is also? She looks preggers from behind too....
 

Matt73

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She sure does look pregnant! I'd be surprised if she isn't.
I just bought a gelding that looks just like that and I know he's not pg.
Touchee
My yearling looks pregnant and she is definitely not AND is getting tons of protein etc. So, I know what you mean. Is she bagged up at all?

P.S. IMHO that's way more than a hay belly...
 
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luv2ridesaddleseat

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I haven't taken any pictures of her from behind for a month or so, because I thought I didn't have to think about the "baby thing" anymore. I'm sure I have gotten weight off her since I bought her, but I guess my concern is why she seems to not loose any in the lower belly?





Joyce,

can you post the pics of her from behind again so they can see how wide she is also? She looks preggers from behind too....
 

Sam Hill Farms

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I have a gelding that has the same thing.. we are lossing ours though and it is tough road as he loves to "talk" me out of treats!! He has no neck fat Just belly. I am feeding a good quality grass hay and Oats with a good supplement like Sho glo (found at valley vet) No grass and we are up to 20 minutes a day in the round pen. He is Loosing it SLOWLY
I almost saw a rib today :0 Good Luck its hard but worth it.. I can tell he feels better as he has became more playful in the field and drives so much better in the ring...
 

mdegner

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OK..... . going waaaayyyyy out on a limb here --and yes, she does look pregnant--but she also looks like a lot of other mares that are 7 years old with a couple of babies coming out of a northern climate. How much exercise has she had since the last time it hit 70 degrees. What I really heard out of your post was that this was your first mini and though I really think you should revist the pregnancy thing, if you rule that out, a belly on a mini looks a lot bigger than a belly on a big horse. Could be a perception thing that you are not used to. I think it really gets down to what you want to do with her and is she healthy? Again, RULE out the pregnancy thing but frankly, we live in a northern climate, and out non-show mares live on a grass pasture and some of them make yours look like Paris Hilton. But you know what, they are all healthy and the pop out babies like nothing and you just need to decide what you want her to be. There is alot of information out there about feeding depending upon what you want her to be. Does that make any sense??

P. S We have a blue roan that we got from a sale in S.D about 8 years ago rom what they refer to as a foundational breeder ----ARC---who looks just like yours. And, she's doing just fine.....but then we are not trying to show her......she's a brood mare.... best of luck, don't let anybody scare you....
 

luv2ridesaddleseat

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Thank you everybody for your opinions, I really appreciate all of them! She has no udder development that I can tell. I'm not sure what my next step is going to be, other than make sure she gets exercise everyday, slow and steady of course! And to continue with the best quality hay I can find. I'm hoping to get some experienced mini people over to look at her and give me their opinions. I don't know what I'll do after that. I really don't think she is pregnant. Sheesh, for little horses, they sure can be a big pain in the butt!! LOL!!!!!!
 

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