Tuesday, 16 September 2008

TF Aine's arrival into the world & more pix & a vid!

Final check on Monday night was at 11.30pm. I trundled up the paddock assuming that it would be the usual drill, give Maude a treat, a cuddle and a bit of a prod, check the foaling alarm battery and wander back down to the house to bed. But as I approached Maude I could tell that something had changed and indeed she was in labour. She whickered at me as she nibbled on her mare nuts and her tail was raised.

I shot back down to the house, woke Nick up, rang our neighbours (who had asked to be informed once things got started), grabbed the anti tet jab out of the fridge & threw it in the foaling bucket along with the scissors, string, plastic bag, iodine spray, leadrope, soft rope and towel and made my way back up to sit on the hay by the tractor and watch.

By the time things really started (11.55 waters broke) the audience was collecting. Not sure I have had any mare foal with so many in attendance! There were 5 humans, 1 cat, 1 dog and 11 horses who shared the experience.

After about 20 minutes, things were not progressing as fast as I would like so we went in and checked. There were two forelegs presented and, after a little investigation, a muzzle but the foal was big and was not too keen on coming out. Maude was not getting very far by herself so, eventually, we went in to help. For the first time ever Maude foaled standing. It seemed she was able to brace herself better on foot. Nick and I had a leg each and applied not inconsiderable downward pressure with every contraction and eventually, out she came. We were able to ease her to the ground (and not drop her on her head!) but of course the umbilical cord broke faster than is ideal however, this did not stop her from trying to stand up, almost immediately!

The rest of the birth was text book and uneventful. Aine was on her feet within about 25 minutes and the afterbirth was passed not long after. She proceeded to drink & poop and do everything she should so that I could finally drag my sorry exhausted carcass to bed, at 3am.

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