Oxygen Deprivation in Newborn Foals

In most cases, mares give birth quickly and without complications. The foal stands and nurses within an hour or two, and a few days later is following the mare around the pasture and snoozing in the sunshine. Sometimes, however, complications just before, during, or after birth can result in a decreased oxygen supply to the foal’s brain.

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Foal pneumonia is a common disease of young horses and one of the leading causes of death in foals. Estimates put the incidence of infection as high in one in ten for all foals. Overall mortality is about 20 percent, but on some farms as many as 80 percent of affected foals may die. Foal pneumonia can be viral or bacterial, but one of the most common causes is infection with Rhodococcus equi, a type of bacteria found in the soil. Adult horses often harbour R. equi without developing disease signs, but foals between two and six months are quite susceptible to infection.

Breeding Management Practices for Mares

Contributed by Washington State University - Breeding season for horses usually occurs in the spring. This makes winter a good time for breeders to plan for the upcoming season. Though people have many reasons for breeding a horse, whether for commercial purposes or as a hobby, there are some important factors that all breeders should consider before getting started.



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