View Full Version : premi foals

md (Guest)
29-08-01, 12:19 AM
I am still a beginner breeder (my fifth foal is just due). But I had an interesting conversation with someone yesterday re premi foals. We had one last year that was 41/2 weeks premi, with scepticemia and although we saved him after alot of hard work and money, we knew it was touch and go from the outset to save a foal so premi.
However the person I spoke to yesterday mentioned a foal that was 6 weeks premi and was fine. I didn't think this was possible (it hasn't even been seen by a vet). I assumed that the breeding dates were incorrect but was told i was wrong and that even foals that are born at 13 months are fine.
My understanding was 3weeks either side of the due date is considered normal and that anything outside these dates can mean a problem?
I know that there are exceptions to every rule just wondering if anyone else has a thought on this subject. Cheers

21-09-01, 03:23 PM
Your understanding of 3 weeks either way is pretty right, but the circumstances of each birth have to be taken into account. So many variables apply, particularly with the health of the mare & the quality of her milk. A mare with an infection will often foal a weak premie foal & then you do have a problem. It's not just premies that are at risk, dysmature (overdue) foals have problems because they have used up the placenta & have sort of been starved in utero.
The best thing is to watch your mare, keep her healthy & fit, & be there for the birth. Prompt attention to a weak foal often makes all the difference, even just keeping it warm & fed is often enough. Congratulations on saving your septic baby, you must have done everything right, because they crash so quickly.
Try not to worry though, most foalings & foals are OK & with your past experience, you're going to do just fine.