What you can do during and after foaling
Leave the umbilical cord unbroken for 5 to 10 minutes as once the foal is out as blood transfusion of 1 – 1.5 liters of blood occurs between the foal and mare. In the best case the umbilical cord breaks by itself.
Wash the navel stump with mild iodine solution.
Clean out the stall make sure that the mare has plenty of fresh hay as she is normally very hungry after foaling.
Within the first hour, collect colostrum milk from the mare, and bottle feed the foal carefully not more than a cup per feeding. The foal is born without antibodies, it can absorb antibodies via epitel cells in the stomach up to 8 hours after birth and the mare can produce colostrum for two to eight hours after birth, four to eight hours after birth the level of IgE in the colostrums has gone down with 85%.
Try to not disturb the interaction between foal and mare more than necessary, optimal is to leave them alone after the foal has had the colostrum and monitor via a foal camera that the foal and mare are acting normal
Upright reflex (the foal tries to lay on its chest) – immediately after partus
Sucking reflex – within 20 minutes, normally after 5 minutes
Stands up – normally within 60 minutes, time range 35 to 165 minutes
Eats – normally within 2 hours, time range 35 to 420 minutes
Body temperature – 37,8C – 38,9C the first 4 days, thereafter 38C – 38,5C
Heart beats – 100/minute
Breathing frequency – 30 minutes after partus = 75/min 12 hours after partus = 34/min
Passing of meconium – at birth to 24 hours
Passing of urine – 8 – 10 hours after partus
Healthy mare after foaling
Should be interested in and care for the foal immediately
Stands up for a while but normally rests after stall has been cleaned out, some mares can rest for up to an hour, if longer check that she is ok.
The mare is hungry, make sure she has plenty of hay to eat.
The placenta should be passed within 3 hours after foaling.