Care Of Your Mare After Foaling
Care of your mare after foaling is extremely important as the better the mare is looked after, the more your newborn foal (your pride and joy) will thrive. After foaling the mare should pass her placenta within 2-3 hours, if this does not occur in a timely fashion veterinary attention should be sought. During foaling trauma to the mare is possible and often there is a small amount of swelling and bruising of the mare, large amounts of swelling or bruising require veterinary attention and the mare should be checked for any signs of infection post-foaling. Issues with infection or ongoing swelling can affect the mares’ capability to breed in the future. Therefore the sooner an infection or retained membranes are dealt with the better the chances are for successful rebreeding of the mare. Feel free to contact the veterinary clinic should you have any concerns regarding your mare.
Nutrition for the mare, pre and post foaling.
Mares require good quality nutrition during their pregnancy and whilst feeding the foal up until weaning. Mares should have access to good quality roughage diets (such as good quality lucerne hay, rhodes grass hay or grassy hay) and good quality pelleted feeds such as Mitavite Breeda which includes appropriate amounts of vitamins and minerals for the mare and to allow the foal to grow and achieve its potential. Care should be taken not to overfeed a mare during her pregnancy, the peak energy requirements of the mare will be once the foal is 1-3 months of age and feeding regularly from the mare. Therefore it is important to ensure you are providing the nutritional needs of the mare, even more so if you are rebreeding the mare.
General husbandry for the mare
Breeding mares require regular worming, even when they are pregnant, most wormers available on the market today are safe to use even whilst the mare is pregnant or feeding a foal, should you have any concerns or queries, Vet Cross’s staff are always available to answer your questions. Regular dental checks and removal of sharp points is important for mares to ensure they are gaining the maximum benefit from their nutrition.
Rebreeding the mare
If you are rebreeding your mare after foaling, it is even more important to ensure she is in great condition and any issues (such as post-foaling infections) are dealt with quickly. Mares can be bred on foal heat as soon as 6-11 days post-foaling, but often this is not enough time for the mare to “clean up” after foaling, therefore it is often recommended to wait until the next time the mare comes into season. Mares should be pregnancy scanned from 18-20 days to check for twins and again at 45-50 days post-service to confirm pregnancy and check for a heartbeat from the pregnancy.
In summary good nutrition and husbandry of the mare goes a long way in helping shape your future champion. Any problems which do arise during or after foaling should be treated immediately as this will give the best results and the best possibility of a successful outcome and rebreeding of the mare.