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We Lost a colt yesterday

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Candice

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This was just awful. The night before I was starting to wonder if the foal was possibly transverse due to her abnormal shape. She was only 304 days so I figured on Monday I'd have the vet look at her and see what she thought. Everything was progressing normal with her pregnancy. The up and down of her bag the color and the consistency of her "milk". Very normal for what I would expect to see at her stage. I believed she would foal sometime over the next two weeks.

Yesterday morning was very normal. Nothing out of the ordinary at all with her. I felt no reason to pull her from the herd yet. Around noon hubby was out mowing and came in and told me that she was down and rolling. I immediately went out and she appeared to be repositioning the foal. We put her in a stall and she immediately laid down and started pushing. I didn't panic yet. I was getting everything out preparing for the delivery. My only worry was that I didn't know if her water had broken yet or not. As soon as I got everything out I gloved up and took a look. Nothing visible. Had hubby immediately call the vet. Our vet was away (never fails) so we got the on call vet and he talked hubby and I thru this. He had back to back colics and could not get to us.

As soon as I went in, I found NOTHING. Very deep I found the unbroken sac and felt a brief glimmer of hope for the foal. I broke the sac. In a very dreadful and stuck position was the foal. I located the ear and worked my way to the muzzle and could not budge that head. I pushed, pulled, twisted and could not move this foal. At that point hubby and I switched out. After a very long time of maneuvering he was able to get the head up and around and one leg. Then we had a horrible time getting the second front leg. Eventually we were able to pull the foal out. A gorgeous Palomino Colt!!! Pure agony.

The vet helping us did not know when he'd be able to be out to tend to my poor mare. I called another vet and he was able to come right out. I gave her banamine straight away and with his care she is doing very well. Accepting the loss of her foal was very traumatic for her. She was frantically trying to get him up. I think this was the worst, most agonizing part of the ordeal.

Doc examined the afterbirth. Upon examining the cord he found an area he didn't like the looks of and he says he believes the foal somehow twisted the cord (one of the 2% chance of happening things), and had died. He says its not a concrete diagnosis, but based on what was presented to him and the position of the foal, he believes this to be what happened.

We are just devastated!! The loss is so overwhelming. I know I can't keep dwelling on what could have been because it never will be, but dang!!! This is just awful.

If we can get our mare thru this with no founder or infection and a good solid recovery, life will be good. Her spirits seem good and she seems like her old self. She's plenty unhappy about being on a hay only diet at the moment. I take that as a very good sign. Things are looking very good for her recovery which is a total blessing.

I wish everyone a safe happy foaling season. If you are like us and very new at this, read everything!!!!! Book knowledge isn't "applied knowlege," but its still knowledge and a definite bonus in a crisis situation. I knew what had to be done. I just needed the vet to reassure me that it was ok.

I do not take photos of our losses as they will never be forgotten.
 

wcr

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I am so sorry for your loss. Foaling time can come with a lot of joy or a lot of heartache, not for the faint of heart.

Not that it would have probably changed the outcome, but for those that read this: if you can get the head and one leg out you can pull the foal. Sometimes the time spent hunting for the second leg can mean the difference in a good or bad outcome.
 

Becky

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I am so sorry for your loss! I know from experience how hard it is to deal with and always the what ifs.

I've been through two bad dystocias this foaling season already. One here and one at my neighbors. It's not been pleasant. Fortunately, both mares will be ok. May or may not be breeding sound.

if you can get the head and one leg out you can pull the foal.
Well, not always. My dystocia here a few weeks ago was in that position. I had one leg and the head coming out and I couldn't find the other leg. I finally determined that the other front leg was back at the shoulder and I couldn't reposition and there was no room for the foal to come through the pelvis that way either. My vet worked very hard trying to get that foals leg forward too but there just wasn't room to bring it forward. Sadly, we made the decision to put the foal to sleep and do a fetotomy. But, I did in fact deliver a foal that way in 2005. One leg only with the head. So it depends on the size of the foal and width of the pelvis.

Hopefully, everyones' foaling season will go smoothly from here on out!
 

wwminis

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I'm so very sorry for your loss!
It's so hard to lose a baby this way! We just went through the very same thing this past Monday with our beautiful mare, Desera! We just picked her up from the hospital yesterday and she's doing great! Just watch for swelling around the vulva for a few days! Our gal was lucky, no swelling at all!

Bill
 

hairicane

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So sorry for your loss.
I have had to pull 10-15 foals out at least with only 1 front leg showing but it can be real hard. Only one of those was a maiden and and that one took my husband to have the strength to pull it out. That said I aknow personally how hard it can be to get head repositioned and that alone can take way too long for the foal too still be alive. U did a great job!!!!
 

ckmini

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We had a bad dystocia last year. I felt 3 legs comming and I couldn't find his nose. Vet was here in 20 min and found that his head was down against his chest. Thankfully the foal (a striking sorrel pinto colt (of course because she has always thrown solids in the past)) was small and my mare was okay.

It happens to us all, it is a terrible experience to go through but it will make you stronger and more knowledgeable. I'm so sorry.
 

joylee123

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[SIZE=12pt]My heart breaks for you
But you really did a good job
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your little mare.[/SIZE]

Joy
 

ClickMini

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I am so sorry you had to go through this! I hate reading these stories as I lost my first foal and nearly lost my mare to a bad dystocia. My mare was fine after the foaling but got very ill a week later from the stress. I am only now, three years later, breeding again, and not that mare either.

What I want to congratulate you on is your "cool under fire," because for someone who is relatively new to be able to turn that badly positioned foal as you did is really something. You are very brave and smart to have studied up.

Sending big hugs to you, I am sure you are totally devastated.
 

backwoodsnanny

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I first want to say how sorry I am for your loss and prayers to you and your little mare. Second what a wonderful job you did. You surely didnt lose this little one for lack of trying Good for you for doing your very best. ((((HUGS)))).
 

CrescentMinis

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I am very sorry for your loss. You have done such a great job educating/preparing yourself and were right there to help your mare. I lost my first foal here to the cord wrapped around her neck and it is heartbreaking, but reading stories people share here makes me realize it's a blessing I still have my mare and she has recovered OK.
 

Sue S

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I am so sorry for your loss, sounds like you tried very hard to get him out, I'm hoping mine will be born before Monday afternoon, thats when hubby goes back to work and I know now that I would not be strong enough to get a baby out, Again I am so sorry and prayers coming your way.
 
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Mona

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Oh no, I am so sorry for your loss. I know how heartbreaking it can be.
Glad to hear your mare seems to be doing OK. You and your hubby did a wonderful job of getting that foal out...tough situation for all involved, but you got it. GREAT WORK!
 

eagles ring farm

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so sorry for your loss


it is so heartbreaking to loose a foal after such a long wait

we lost our 1st 2 last year (our first losses) and were in a fog for weeks

but as soon as you get a healthy beautiful foal you realize why you are doing this

foaling season =it is exciting, happy, scary and sad

so sorry again. Hope your mare is fine

Lori
 

minie812

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I am sorry to hear of the loss and sending good thoughts and prayers your way. Do not beat yourself up (plenty of folks to do that for you) You did awesome!
 

wildoak

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So sorry for your loss, it is always devastating and without a doubt the hardest part of breeding. You did a wonderful job of getting the foal delivered and saving your mare though. Hope she has no more troubles.

Jan
 

RJRMINIS

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So very sorry for your loss, you did everything you could. Unfortunatley with breeding there are always ups and downs.....
 
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