View Full Version : Scan - How often??

04-01-05, 02:16 PM

Hope you can help with advice. I wonder how often people scan their mares during pregnancy.

If the 45 day scan is good and your mare comes home from stud, when would you have them scanned from that point on?

Reason for question is twofold, one its the first of our breeding exploits, and second I think there may be some differing opinions on this.

appreciate feedback,



04-01-05, 10:55 PM
Assuming everything appears normal, a mare should be scanned at 14 days to detect the presence of twins and then, if required for payment of fee on 45 day positive test, at 45 days. When my mare returned from Casterton (I live in Melb) I was particularly edgy, I had her scanned at about 50 - 60 days. This is not normally required. Two scans, in a healthy situation, is all you should be looking at. I am assuming live cover, of course. Pagan

05-01-05, 01:44 PM
I haven't had a mare scanned for 4 years and in that time we have had 7 foals. The only reason I had that mare scanned was because I had thought her not to be in foal and had her in work... I got suspicious for a couple of reasons and thought it best to check :-)

With having my own stallion it was easy. He got all of his mares in foal on the first cycle and they all produced foals. I used one outside stallion and the mare was very difficult to serve, so it was a case of he either got her first cycle or bad luck. If the mare does not come back into season 3 weeks after being served that is generally good enough for me.

This year I sent my TB mare out and I am very keen for a foal from this mating. I will have her scanned before she makes the long trip home partly because she doesn't show heat with any degree of gusto and also because it is a long trip if she has to go back. A scan is a lot cheaper than a 6hr float trip. So it will be just to make sure.

Next season I hope to have one of my mares inseminated with frozen semen. This changes things dramatically. Early scan for twins, 25 days then 45 days. Assuming you get a pregnancy to start with.

05-01-05, 01:56 PM
Jodie, Please speak to your Vet and get the mare scanned at 14 or 15 days for twins. At 25 days you will have problems. Pagan

06-01-05, 11:52 AM
Well, after this season's experience with a mare that pulled of a very convincing pregnancy, without carrying a darn thing, is to scan early, then again to be sure (if you canJ). While there is a small chance of embryonic loss, there are also times (like this whole bloody year of waiting for a foal) where you wished you'd scanned again.

06-01-05, 01:18 PM
Pagan, I meant the early scan at 14-15 days (couldn't remember the exact day it is required) then the 25day to make sure and 45 for the certificate. :-)

07-01-05, 04:39 AM
Thank heavens! Thought I was gunna have to track you, horse and vet down and lecture!!! Good luck, cheers, Pagan

07-01-05, 12:37 PM
Working on a tb stud, the best time to scan, if you want to be very sure is at 14-16 days as this is the earliest possible time to detect the pregnancy (is too small and hard to find earlier) and will also detect twins which the vet will be able to squash one if necessary.
The next scan, providing the vet is happy with the first, can be done at day 29/30 as if twins were missed at the first scan (which can hapen) this is the last chance to abort the pregancy and be able to get the mare cycling agin to reserve.
The final scan is the 45 day scan and this one is purely done for legality reasons, in tbs, no payment is made until the mare has tested positive to the 45 day scan.
The one you can miss if you only want to two, is the 30 day scan as this is really just a double check for twins.
Hope that helps :)

10-01-05, 04:16 AM
Hmm, the stud where I sent my mare only has them scanned at 25 days...I didn't realise this was too late for detecting twins and eliminating one. Will be having words with them if my mare finally gets preggers with twins and then has to abort them both....

Goes without saying that I will be having a 45 day scan done since the mare is a fair distance away. That is, if they can get her in foal :-(

10-01-05, 02:06 PM

I"m praying for a +ve test in a few weeks too!!!

10-01-05, 04:53 PM
First one for us is Wednesday, next one a week later, desperately hoping both of them get in, and going to be double sure of the second one as she had a double ovulation. These are to frozen so I'm really hoping for a positive result on both.

Last year we had a chilled insemination for twins, and scanned at 15 days when the vet pinched one off, then again at 30 to make sure all was ok, then I got her done at the 45 days as well. She is due to foal in the next week.

11-01-05, 02:06 PM
The first scan at 14-16 days is as everyone has said to find a pregnancy and detect any twins.

The second at 28 days is to check for a heartbeat.

The 45 day is for your service certificate. The highest rate of loss is between 16 and 30 days......so that middle scan is important if ya plan to go round again.

Good luck !!

12-01-05, 04:42 AM
It really depends on what you plan to do with the information. Our breeding program is almost exclusively frozen AI. We only scan at 14-16 days. If they have twins and one is squashed then we followup with another scan to see if the remaining pregancy has held.

Other than that I dont bother. Usually I find if the mares slip the pregnancy it is further down the track ie three months on when it is usually too late to get them back in foal.

I can usually tell when it comes close to their foaling whether I thing they have lost the foals, having them flirt with the colts over the fence is a surefire sign.

Now it depends on when the mare is due in the season as to when I would scan to check that the suspicious mares are still in foal. If they are due early ie oct/Nov I woudl wait until they are two weeks late and if there is no bagging up etc then I would send them off to be checked and leave them for breeding if they are not in. If they are due later ie Dec Jan then I may get them checked earlier if they dont show obvious signs so that I can breed them again.

If your breeding contract requires a 45 day check then you need to get one at that time.

We breed a dozen plus foals each year and in the past couple of years at least one mare has slipped each year.

12-01-05, 07:11 AM
We normally look around 11 to 14 days as we can't wait to see, then again at 16 days (for twins). You can see a heart beat from 21 days if you want to. Then the next check is at 28 to 30 days for the reasons mentioned above. 45 day checks are normally carried out for stud fee payments (if that is the way that you have gone). We will sometimes have a look at around the 60 day period to try and sex the foetus (this can be a difficult thing to do in large mares but it is fun trying).
In the USA, the big T/B studs are now testing all mares near the start of the spring so there are no suprises. This enables the detection of mares that have lost their foetus, up to that stage, so that the stud has the ability to get those mares back in the best shape to have them rejoined early in the season. I guess that on the large farms, you would only have to find an few to make it worth while to recheck them.
I certainly know of a few mares that have had there owners thinking that they were in foal until they did not start to bag up.
It does all come down to experiences, money and peace of mind. If you know of someone who has been caught out or if it has happened to you, I think you would want a later test carried out. Of course, the test can be done manually at this stage - although the cost is much the same.
As I live with a Vet, I don't have the costs.
As they (foals) cost so much to produce (especially frozen semen one's) I like the 'peace of mind'!!!