Weaning - this is my first time!

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kdhminis

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Our filly will be 5 months old 10/5/08. She really hasn't been nursing alot anymore, she eats grain fine, hay fine, grass fine, drinks water fine - so it's time to wean. Plus the dam is pregnant for 2009 so would like to give her some time away from nursing also! We bought a new very small mare and our filly gets along with her great - mom wouldn't let them play she would get between them everytime. So, we put the filly & the newer mare in our 48x48 pen; and left the mom and another mare just outside of this pen - in the pasture. Just did this today. The filly and newer mare are itching each other - and getting along fantastic. Mom is eating her hay and grass and just keeps looking at her filly making sure she is okay. They can stand on opposite sides of the 5 foot fence and can put their noses together, etc. I have heard the filly cry out for her mom a couple of times, vice-versa.

Okay - my question is: How long does it normally take to have weaning completed - before the mare and filly can be put back together with the other mini's in the pasture? I realize every mini and situation is different - but any guesses from your experiences would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

miniaddiction

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I dont have any answers for you sorry, just wanted to wish you luck and say I am not looking forward to being in this position myself in a few months time!
 

kdhminis

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Being my first time at weaning - this is going to be very stressful on my filly and me. Alot of you are very experienced at this and I have read the items in the forum search about how to wean, and what age to wean, but I can't find anything that goes into if it usually takes approximately 1 week, 4 weeks, longer or shorter - before the mom and baby can be put back together in the same pasture after weaning.
 

Magic

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It may depend on the mare and foal, but generally they need to be kept separated for at least three months. Even then, a mare may let her foal nurse again (though she would be dried up but being pregnant could possibly make her produce milk again? Wouldn't be good for a heavily pregnant mare to be nursing a foal at any rate). I keep my weanlings separate from their dams until the next spring, so around 6 months, here.
 

h2t99

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I have had mares that after 2 weeks will not let foals nurse and I have a mare that will let a foal nurse after 3 months!! Yes that foal did bring milk back in!!
So in response to your question it depends on the mare.
Best of luck!!
 

disneyhorse

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My weanling filly is five months old, been weaned for a couple of months... she tries to nurse off of all the other horses. I probably wouldn't put her back in with her mom until the mom has another foal at foot, personally... I've seen horses a year or two old nursing off of their dams through the fence at some farms...

Andrea
 

minifreishorsefarm

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I have had lots of people tell me not to put mom and baby together til spring. When I weaned our girl, I put them in pens with common fence. they were away from each other a lot but I did find her nurse thru the fence, so after 1 week of this I moved the mare to a different pen where she cant be reached by the baby. She is doing fine and either one will occsionally whinny at the other, but nobody stressed out at all. I think when the foal is eating other stuff fine, its time. I had people tell me to wait to 5-6 mos to wean, but I did it at just over 4 mos because she was being very independent and eating well. I will keep them seperate til next year as well.

Marsha
 
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rabbitsfizz

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Never, really, I just do not like weaned foals in with mares likely to foal down....and if you need to separate again before the mare foals you are going to be stressing the mare out at a time she really should not be stressed.

I have in foal mares separate, and then yearlings and two year olds and I will leave adult, dry mares in with the broodmares, but that is it.

Breeding animals need their privacy and they need special feeding etc.

It is great that you have a friend for the foal, but if that mare is also in foal you will have another problem, all over again...you really need an old gelding or mare not going in foal as a companion, although, of course, another foal is the best thing!!!
 

Calekio

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I've just pulled my 3 older foals in today... they thought it was a great game to walk down the field without mummy and where all of high spirits, i haven't heard a single one of them call and left them in a stable all 3 together with hay and they've been tucking happily into there tea.

Tomorrow they will go out with the geldings/yearling colt who will be there babysitters... i do find having a few geldings on the stud very helpful for this role now and being company to any colts who can't go out with the girls for obvious reasons.

I would say keep apart as long as you possibly can.... i've had foals who after a month will happily go back to the milk bar and mare will let them... one mare here though after a week would kick the weaning baby off (not that i tried it... just they escaped from me one year and she was having none of it!)

On the other end of the scale... had a foal who after 14months
away from mum was allowed to go and suckle from her again! That is the worsest i've had... and same mare who had slipped her foal and didn't have a foal last year was found with another mares colt trying to nurse of her.... and she didn't have anything!!

To add.. that same foal who after 14 months tried to suckle... was put back in with mum and still attempted it after 2yrs!!!!
(to this point mare was back in foal and proptly told the youngster to get lost! But the pair remained bonded and would often be nose to nose grazing up until the time mum had her second foal... who incidently.. with this second foal she's been trying to kick the foal off suckling for a month already!)
 

LAZY J MINIS

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I USUALLY WAIT UNTIL 6 MONTHS TO WEAN ALL OF MY BABIES, BY THEN THEY ARE EATING WELL ON THEIR OWN AND NOT NURSING VERY MUCH. THEN I PUT THEM IN SEPARATE PENS WHERE THEY CAN SEE EACH OTHER BUT NOT REACH EACH OTHER. GOOD LUCK.
 
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