Should I hit the panic button?

Ellietotz

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I’m a born worrier and have had generalised anxiety at times and I find it nearly impossible just to stop worrying about the future. What I find helps is having a clear plan in place (even if it doesn’t work out) which is why I think CI is stressing.

I agree that things normally sort themselves out but I hate not having a plan, that’s what makes me worry
Another born worrier here.
I find it helps to have a plan too but with an "if it doesn't work out" plan. Have to think of all possible issues that might arise to come to the plan but once I have it, everything seems okay.

Irrespective, things will work out for you CI. Try and enjoy these moments while there is no rush to change things.
 

Caol Ila

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Good call, I've seen a horse nearly lost to post foaling laminitis caused by a retained piece of placenta. And it cost a fortune and the horse and foal had to be sold to pay the vet bill.

Fingers crossed she's fine now, CI. You really are going through the mill :(
.
That was the scary sh1t I found online. I'm pretty good at Googling, and when I Google medical stuff, I cross reference and fact check across a range of websites. Nothing was that reassuring. If it was nothing, normal, then whatever, but if I'd done nothing and the mare came down with a fever and laminitis, I would feel pretty stupid. For the last 25 or so years of horse ownership, my MO has been to just call the damn vet if I'm dithering over calling the vet. It got Gypsum to 28. But with this foal thing, I'm flying in a whiteout because I know nothing.
 

palo1

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That was the scary sh1t I found online. I'm pretty good at Googling, and when I Google medical stuff, I cross reference and fact check across a range of websites. Nothing was that reassuring. If it was nothing, normal, then whatever, but if I'd done nothing and the mare came down with a fever and laminitis, I would feel pretty stupid. For the last 25 or so years of horse ownership, my MO has been to just call the damn vet if I'm dithering over calling the vet. It got Gypsum to 28. But with this foal thing, I'm flying in a whiteout because I know nothing.
But you don't know nothing @Caol Ila !! You have loads of experience which informs your gut instinct and your knowledge. There are specific foaling related issues but it won't be long before you are through that bit and can view Hermosa as usual and gorgeous Caso as fairly simple to deal with too. You have had a nightmare few weeks and you should take support from wherever you can - a vet is as good a person as any if you are feeling wobbly or uncertain but you can look after your two horses beautifully. Hermosa and Caso are incredibly lucky to have you on their side. :)
 

Annagain

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CI - Just STOP for a minute. Even IF your YO can't accommodate them, that won't be an issue for months. You've already had some lovely offers on here and several leads to follow but you don't need to do anything for at least a month, probably two. Just enjoy them for now.

You've had a terrible few months but so has she. She was ripped away from the only thing she's ever known, attacked when she got somewhere new, moved again, stuck in a stable, moved somewhere where she was happy and settled, then that world was turned upside down again by a foal. None of that is a criticism of anything you've done, I'm just pointing out that she's had a lot of upheaval too and
a. can't understand it like you can.
b. needs a bit of security and consistency in her life at the moment.

Take a breath, stop worrying about things that don't need worrying about yet, focus on the now and help Hermosa to feel settled and secure - which will in turn help you deal with things like her feet. She'll soon come round and once Caso works out you're providing cuddles and scratches he will too. IF you need to move her in the Autumn, worry about it then. I understand the need for a plan if you're a worrier, but isn't "do nothing for 6 weeks then look at it afresh" also a plan?
 

holeymoley

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I think your worry probably stems from living in a pretty guff area in the country for yards. You’re not a million miles from me but the standards on yards or maybe more so what is advertised and promised in comparison to what you actually get leaves much to be desired.

I’ve got no suggestions but I’m sure everyone on here can club together and come up with a plan!
 

Caol Ila

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I think I am about 40 miles from CI but I have a 225 acre farm so space and grazing isn't really an issue for us. Also have large sheep pens that can double as mare and foal pens
I think your worry probably stems from living in a pretty guff area in the country for yards. You’re not a million miles from me but the standards on yards or maybe more so what is advertised and promised in comparison to what you actually get leaves much to be desired.

I’ve got no suggestions but I’m sure everyone on here can club together and come up with a plan!
It is a guff area for yards. It sucks. You'd think a city of this size would have more decent yards.

Before the vet told me she was too far along in her pregnancy to move, I thought sending her to Quadro's yard might be an option. If my YO really can't deal, it sounds like it still is. It sounds amazing. Wish it were closer! My ex lived nearby, so I know the drive well. But I guess for all the reasons Annagain outlined, I don't want to move the horse again, only to have to move her a few months or whatever after that, as it's not sustainable in the long term to have her 40 miles away. It's no wonder that she's a terrible loader, which adds to the stress of moving.
 

Coblover63

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You're doing brilliantly in alien territory. I hope Hermosa is OK today. Regarding foalie.... scritches rather than strokes. Scritch his withers or his hindquarters and he'll love it. They are all born with a fluffy protective coat (which he will shed fairly quickly) so he'll have the real itchies in this hot weather. If you scritch him, he'll soon be your best friend.
 

Caol Ila

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In other news, I still have no idea what I’m doing.

I’ve been catching Hermosa and going on tiny walks around the field. Like a couple circles. All fine. Today, I extended our walk, crossing the field. All was going well when Caso fired ahead and she realised she couldn’t run after him. That made her unhappy and she started spinning in circles around me. That made Caso even more alarmed and he moved further away. At which point their field buddy, an old TB gelding, picked up on the excitement and ran over. Caso ran towards him, and he started to round him up a bit. Hermosa lost. Her. Sh1t and started fighting me like a trapped mustang. My headcollar can be whipped on or off in a hurry, so I whipped it off. It seemed like only a matter of time before she ripped herself loose. She rounded up Caso and everyone galloped around the field for a couple minutes.

Once she’d settled, I approached. Headcollar back on. Let her graze a bit wearing it, then walked her in a few smaller circles. She’s fine so long as baby stays close. Then OH and I found her itchy spots. OH managed to get foal to let him scritch him. He’s a damned foal whisperer.

The odd time I’ve been a witness to other people having foals, the first week seemed easier. But maybe it wasn’t and I wasn’t paying enough attention.
 

Clodagh

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I wouldn't try to teach her to lead at the moment, let her be a mum and put the headollar on, scratches and attention, headcollar off. Making her lead when she isn't very good at it anyway and you don't need to turn her in and out or whatever is possibly making things more difficult.
 

milliepops

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i got to know mine when they were stabled. But my mare was also super relaxed about being handled. she was poked and prodded throughout her pregnancy and I was there at the birth so it was just normal for me to be quietly pottering about from the start.

I just sat in a corner on a few wads of straw and waited for foal to be curious and approach me, she learnt pretty much straight away that people = scratches and she hasn't stopped demanding them since then. The mare being chilled was probably a big factor though, she would whicker and follow if foal wandered off but it didn't stress her. I am clearly no expert at all but I'd try to get them in a smaller quiet area before setting up any exercises with Hermosa so that you aren't inadvertently creating drama for yourselves. is that possible? if not perhaps give it a bit longer before doing anything structured and wait for her to be more relaxed about foal coming and going.
 

CanteringCarrot

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Don't let it get to you. New mum, new foal, fairly new owner, and mum that's still quite green in terms of handling.

I could see why she'd panic a bit when her foal could be out of reach and she didn't know if she could get to him/protect him. The foal and everything about it is still so new to her.

I would also only work with them without the field buddy/another horse in there at this time.

Keep it really short, positive, and basic. Don't set her up for failure.
 

milliepops

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I wouldn't try to teach her to lead at the moment, let her be a mum and put the headollar on, scratches and attention, headcollar off. Making her lead when she isn't very good at it anyway and you don't need to turn her in and out or whatever is possibly making things more difficult.
yeah she probably can't concentrate on what OP is asking because her mind is so focused on her new baby. I'd expect her to go backwards in any learning tbh because of the disruptive effect of her new responsibility.
 

Caol Ila

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She was actually good at it. We had to go up and down a road for about ten minutes each way to her old turn out field and she was doing great with cars, bikes, cows, pigs, and ridden horses. We’d just started to go on longer in hand hacks, which obviously ceased and desisted once we learned she was due to foal that week.

It seemed imperative to get her caught and leading a bit in case there was a vet emergency. And there was one.

Everyone else on this forum who’s had a foal seems to be able to handle it from day 1. Same with people I’ve seen with foals in meatspace. I still wonder if they wouldn’t be better off with someone else.
 

milliepops

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but I think you need to appreciate that, as much as your world has gone upside down, so has Hermosa's. plus she's now got all these extra hormones swirling around, and a new life that she has to protect. So what she had learned recently has probably gone out of the window. With older mares they've normally had years of handling that is really well established.
 

Abi90

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Everyone else on this forum who’s had a foal seems to be able to handle it from day 1. Same with people I’ve seen with foals in meatspace. I still wonder if they wouldn’t be better off with someone else.
I met Percy at 5 days old and, despite having done a lot of handling of foals and been told he was really friendly, all I got was sniffed a bit and managed about 5 seconds of scratches! There’s no way I would be getting a head collar near him yet or anything like that! It will come.
 

splashgirl45

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you are doing fine....i had never handled foals until i went to my last yard, i had the breeder to tell me what to do and i coped and now i still go back when needed to help with mares and foals. its really nice when you get a foal to lead nicely and doesnt usually take long..you have your YO who knows what to do so ask for a bit of guidance..good luck
 

View

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CI, please, please, stop piling pressure on yourself.

I understand the need to have a plan, to feel that you can just pop a headcollar on Hermosa, for you to want the same easy relationship with Hermosa and Caso that you feel every other owner has.

So much has been thrown at you so quickly.

You do need a plan - a plan to give yourself permission to just be. Please make a definite decision to do nothing immediately.

you need time to grieve for Gypsum, come to terms with your decision to give her a dignified end and that you now own two beautiful youngsters.

a couple of weeks to process things and just be will do you the world of good.

breathe. Just breathe.
 

FinnishLapphund

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She was actually good at it. We had to go up and down a road for about ten minutes each way to her old turn out field and she was doing great with cars, bikes, cows, pigs, and ridden horses. We’d just started to go on longer in hand hacks, which obviously ceased and desisted once we learned she was due to foal that week.

It seemed imperative to get her caught and leading a bit in case there was a vet emergency. And there was one.

Everyone else on this forum who’s had a foal seems to be able to handle it from day 1. Same with people I’ve seen with foals in meatspace. I still wonder if they wouldn’t be better off with someone else.
I presume that the majority of the ones who's been able to handle their foals from day one, didn't have to deal with a young mare whose breeder didn't teach her to be handled much before selling her to you. If anyone is to blame for this, it is not you, it is Hermosa's breeder.

Also, even the most experienced horse expert can sometimes come across a situation where what usually works for them, doesn't. Horses is after all, live animals with a mind of their own.
I doubt anyone else would have done better than you, with Hermosa, and her foal. Time, and patience, and I'm sure you'll get there.
 

Spanny

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CI, as an unconnected observer who knows nothing about foals, all I can say is that you're doing great. The universe seems to be throwing punch after punch your way and you keep getting back up and you keep fighting to do the best for your horses. I don't think anyone could do or ask more than that.
 

paddy555

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In other news, I still have no idea what I’m doing.

I’ve been catching Hermosa and going on tiny walks around the field. Like a couple circles. All fine. Today, I extended our walk, crossing the field. All was going well when Caso fired ahead and she realised she couldn’t run after him. That made her unhappy and she started spinning in circles around me. That made Caso even more alarmed and he moved further away. At which point their field buddy, an old TB gelding, picked up on the excitement and ran over. Caso ran towards him, and he started to round him up a bit. Hermosa lost. Her. Sh1t and started fighting me like a trapped mustang. My headcollar can be whipped on or off in a hurry, so I whipped it off. It seemed like only a matter of time before she ripped herself loose. She rounded up Caso and everyone galloped around the field for a couple minutes.

Once she’d settled, I approached. Headcollar back on. Let her graze a bit wearing it, then walked her in a few smaller circles. She’s fine so long as baby stays close. Then OH and I found her itchy spots. OH managed to get foal to let him scritch him. He’s a damned foal whisperer.

The odd time I’ve been a witness to other people having foals, the first week seemed easier. But maybe it wasn’t and I wasn’t paying enough attention.
please be careful. This is not a competition with other foal owners as to how quickly you can handle Caso.
This put Caso in a dangerous position. He was loose without his mother and rang towards another horse even though it was his field buddy. Without Hermosa to protect him anything could have happened, the TB could have gone for him and he could have ended up being kicked/lame or hurt in some way. Just because the TB may behave towards Caso when Hermosa is there doesn't mean he will if Caso is on his own.

In the normal course of events Caso, Hermosa and the TB have their own heirachy in the field. This disrupted that situation. That is not good for anyone and Caso is the vulnerable one.

All Hermosa learnt was if she runs around you and fights she can get loose and canter off. You released the headcollar quickly but if you hadn't she would have simply got away from you which doesn't teach her anything and you could well have got hurt.
She is a young first time mother, she has to learn how to look after Caso and this simply increases her stress levels.

please slow down. Hermosa is trying to cope with Caso, she can't be expected to worry about her own training ATM. If you want to do something take them both into a stable, groom Hermosa and stritch Caso then very slowly over several days teach Caso about a headcollar. Then lead them both around the stable and gradually move onto leading them both round a very small yard where if something goes wrong no one is going anywhere and they are both quite safe.

Look at everything you do from a safety POV. If something goes wrong you cannot hang onto Hermosa although you may be able to catch her. You certainly are not going to be able to catch and control Cato. The only thing that matters ATM is their safety and not putting them in a dangerous position.

Alternatively just leave them and give them the chance to be horses and for Hermosa to enjoy her baby.
 
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