Pregnant Horse Info 101
Babies are a blessing, or so the saying goes. And when it comes to your prize filly being pregnant, you’ll definitely want to pull out all the stops to help ensure an easy birth and safe pregnancy. If this is your first pregnant horse, then the below is a great starting point for you on how to care for her.
Overview Of A Horse Pregnancy
While human pregnancies take on average just over 9 months for a baby to gestate, horse pregnancies take a little longer, averaging 345 days, which equates to 11 – 12 months. Despite the lengthy time frame, it is only really in the final 3 months of pregnancy that owners should take extra special care with their pregnant mares, as this is the risky time period when the foal grows the most. That said, should your horse develop a condition such as gestational diabetes, you’ll need to pay extra attention to her needs from quite early on.
Can You Still Ride Your Pregnant Mare?
Keeping your mare happy will be at the top of your list, and ensuring she goes out on regular rides throughout her pregnancy is one way to ensure she enjoys herself and remains fit. Apart from the first month in which you should take it as easy as possible on your mare, to let her body adjust to the pregnancy, you can keep up her regular roster of competitions until her 8th month or a little later.
Your thoroughbred mare will be quite happy to race well up until the final three months, and can even continue doing show-jumps, as opposed to needing to stick to gentle walks or trotting sessions. With that said, always clear this with your veterinarian to ensure no complications have cropped up between competitions which could endanger her and the foal. Around the 8th month, as the foal starts to grow, your mares diaphragm will start to be compressed, leading to less oxygen for her especially if she’s still engaged in competitive racing which can be dangerous.
Your mare will still love to have a social life, but around her 9th month of pregnancy, she’ll start to show signs of anxiety and being worried when other horses are playful. She’ll start to separate herself from the herd, and at this point she should be kept in a separate area away from other horses (though a single friendly companion will help keep her spirits up. It is very important that your horse still get walked for at least a half hour a day after 9-months, as standing still all day in a field can lead to swelling on the legs (fetlock edema). So, take her for a walk then enjoy Canadian online gambling afterwards.
The Final Countdown
In the last few weeks of your horse’s pregnancy, you’ll want to avoid anything which spikes her cortisol levels and keep her as stress free as possible. This means no transportation since this can induce labour prematurely. At this point, it is also worth getting your vet to check if your mare has had the Caslick’s procedure, as you’ll want to remove those stitches asap to prevent complications or tearing.