Maggie foaled tonight at 7:30 p.m. The girls were running down the driveway as I was running up it (having seen her on the mare-cam). In just a couple of minutes, the little girl was born.
She is strong and doing well but stubbornly refuses to nurse, thus I get a new learning experience and because it would just be too easy for everything to go right. One vet says that I have only four hours to get the foal to nurse or I could lose her. In this scenario, I need at the third hour after birth to call the vet and get colostrum from a local farm delivered here.
Vet number two says I have twelve hours, not four, and that the best thing for this foal is to get it's own mom's colostrum. (BTW, Vet #1 and Vet #2 are in the same practice.) In scenario two, I milk the mom and feed it by bottle or dropper to the baby.
What to do, what to do? I don't know anything about this, except that my former La Leche League training makes me lean towards giving the foal colostrum from it's own mom and with a dropper, not a bottle. Who would have thought I would have gone from teaching women to breastfeed to teaching horses to? I've also never milked a horse, but it is easy. Right now, this is what we are doing, and it looks to be a long night.
Now, here is the actual birth! (Note: graphic birth of foal. Squeamish people should exit now.)