May – brood mares and babies

I blinked, and May has already been and gone. The month has well and truly blessed us with some long awaited glorious weather, we’ll just forget about the odd few days of torrential rain in between.

Not only have we been blessed with the weather here at Ridings, we have also been blessed with some lovely new arrivals- foals, who I have been having plenty of cuddles with. Their intelligence fascinates me, how their instincts tell them how to coordinate those long gangling legs, that are far too long for their body to be able to stand up and to find where their mums milk is within a couple of hours after birth.

However, after having a mare and foal in the practice for over a week I have soon found out that their inquisitive side takes over. Every morning I arrive at work to be greeted by mum and foal with their heads over the stable door waiting patiently to be fed. Even though the foal can’t eat her mum’s food, she still thinks it’s a fun idea to stand in the feed bucket flinging it everywhere, hoping to find something exciting at the bottom- she still can’t understand why her mum gets so excited when I arrive with the feed. Once mum has eaten, both get moved into a spare stable so that I’m able to muck theirs out. In theory the foal should follow her mum straight into the stable. However, one particular morning the foal had other ideas. Instead of following her mum to the next stable, everything took her fancy, she got distracted from what she was supposed to be doing. ‘ooo that’s a funny looking water carrier, wow look at that piece of wood, that gate is really shiny’. The small puddle on the floor was a step too far. It was like a scene out of Finding Nemo, the one where Nemo swims out into the open ocean to touch the boat, to soon realise that it wasn’t the best idea he’d had. Well there was no boat, or ocean, but there was a foal stood there snorting at this extremely scary puddle wondering if she’d ever make to the other side to the safety of her mum. Plot spoiler- she made it! Legs everywhere she scrambled around this puddle and quickly ran back to her mum’s side. Safe to say she slept most of the rest the day and hasn’t tried to go on anymore adventures.

I’ll not embarrass her anymore and tell you the story of how the stairs jumped out at her and hit her on the nose the day after..

Not only have I been babysitting foals, we’ve also had a handful of mares in our practice on our AI package. Hopefully helping to create some beautiful, healthy foals to greet the world next year.

I hope you’ve all got lots of plans for you and your horses over the summer, fingers crossed in my next blog I’ll still be writing about how nice the weather has continued to be.

Kate x