ORPHAN COLT

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Anonymous

A good friend just called. Her mare foaled about 1 hour ago and died. The colt is healthy etc and the vet will be over soon. They were able to "milk" the mare and got 3 cups from her (so sad). She has a mare that is fixin' (okie word) to wean a colt. Any ideas on how to get the mare to accept the new colt? Need pretty quick advice.

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Anonymous

what works sometimes is that you take a piece of cloth, rub it over the body of the orriginal foal. use this cloth then to rub over the foal that s to be adopted. it will have +- the same smell and this will help accepting, but generally it doesn't work. the mare will also stop lactating pretty soon (only four months mostly) so i would put the foal on a bottle, but let her run with other horses, so as to not loose group sense.

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Anonymous

If any, put hobbles on the mare so she lets the foal suck without kicking. Wean her other foal an keep her with this one all the time, keep them together with no other horses. The only bad thing about this mare is that she is probably near the end of her lactation cycle and might not be producing enough milk for this young foal. Milk replacement might be a good choice for this foal.
 
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Anonymous

I never had foal that was not accepted by their mother...but I have experienced many a momma beef cow that was apprehensive in accepting a calf, particularly a twin. In that situation I have used Vick's Vapor Rub around the mother's nose in addition to rubbing it down the middle of the calf's back...this distorts the sense of smell of both parties. Some people profess that extracts of vanilla work in the same fashion.

In addition, I had a neighbor who had a foal whose mother had no intentions of providing any typical mothering mannerisms, let alone be the source of food. She actually hated her baby and would attempt to kick, bite and strike every chance she had. Our vet quickly was able to provide a powdered milk replacement (although quite expensive), specifically designed for horses. My neighbors were dedicated to raise this baby, which they did with flying colors. Needless to say, momma went down the road!

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