From the Foaling Barn

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Waiting

We’re on foal watch, with two mares approaching their due dates next week. The Foal Alert System is set up; the cameras are turned out; we’ve given the prefoaling vaccinations; we’ll spread straw for bedding tomorow. Then we’ll sit back and watch. Both mares are beginning to bag up. Jewel, the older of the two mares, seems to have dropped and she has a good deal of oedema in front of her udder. I check the foal cams several times during the evening. I still think they are both at least a week away, but someone surprises me every year.

I’m especially concerned about Jewel. Two years ago she lost her full term foal. The foal alert did not go off and by the time we got out to the barn, the foal had been born. It was not moving and, though, we tried to revive it, the autopsy said that it never took a breath. We were heartbroken– the foal was a beautiful, palomino filly by Big Chex to Cash. So I plan to sleep out at the barn when she gets a little closer.

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