Saturday, April 7, 2007

A Baby Boomer Dreams of Arabian Horses Part 8 The Foal

Part 1

Well, I arrived back from Denver and about had a stroke. The whole time I had been gone it had rained. The horses had been kept inside and the grass was grown to at least 3 feet high on the whole farm.

Getting the horses outside with all of that spring grass was going to be a problem. Even though our place had been really overgrazed when we bought it, the odds were that this grass was way to rich for horses not used to it. Both of the ponies had foundered several times before we got them so we had to be even more careful with them than Scandalous (the Arabian horse). Trying to put horses out for only twenty minutes when they've been cooped up for almost a month was definitely a challenge.

Scandalous , my dream Arabian horse,was mad that I had left her and wouldn't have anything to do with me. I'd walk into the horse's stall and she would turn her butt to me and look back my direction glaring. It was going to take some serious attention to get her over being mad.

It didn't take too long and the horses were back into their regular routine. Once they had the grass knocked down in the smallest paddock, I could put them in one of the larger fields for the twenty minutes and then move them into the field that was grazed down. That way they still got to be outside but I didn't have to worry about them overdoing on the grass and having anyone colic or founder.

Scandalous's due date came and went and still no baby. The mare bagged all up, her muscles around her tail head were relaxed and her vulva had elongated. Still there was no foal.

It seemed like every farm for miles started shooting off fireworks after dark from the time the horse was due to deliver. There was no way that mare (Arabian horse) was doing to foal with all those scary fireworks going off. She was absolutely huge and waddled when she walked but she hung onto that foal. During the day, I could see the horse was having contractions but by night time, everything came to a screeching halt.

I spent those two weeks sleeping out in the barn. I was determined that this first Arabian dream foal was going to enter the world with me in attendance. Finally, on July 1 the fireworks had finally died down and in the still of the night I heard the mare begin to stir. I listened for a little while making sure the mare was in labor. Then ran to the house to get Dave to join me.

By the time we returned, the mare was moving into the second stage of labor. We heard the mare (Arabian horse) lay down and moan as a huge contraction washed over her. The water broke and with one push the front feet, head and shoulders of the foal emerged. I pulled the amnion back from it's face and uttered a statement I will probably never live down. "Oh no, it doesn't have a star!"

Dave said, "Geez, MiKael, it's not even born yet and you're already picking it apart!"

In my dream this first foal was supposed to have four white socks and a star. The dream had played over so many times in my head that I'd just figured that's the way it would be. By the time the rest of the foal was out, I was ecstatic. Scandalous had given birth to an absolutely huge bay colt with four white socks, a faint star of a few white hairs and a large snip on his nose. The colt was leggy and gorgeous. I couldn't have been more pleased.

I'll never forget that first knicker from Scandalous (Arabian horse) towards her new foal. It was so soft and tender, the tears welled up and my heart soared. This dream was everything I had ever imagined and more. That was the last time I ever put in a serious order for a foal. I've joked around a few times about what a foal should be, but never again have I been so silly as to expect what kind of markings a foal will have. I have been content to know that with each new foal my dream soars with eagles. Mother Nature has rewarded me well for daring to dream.

To be continued....

Part 9

1 comment:

  1. I know this feeling too, although it was nearly three years after first starting breeding that I actually witnessed a birth which happened to be my bottle baby Wiggle.

    I also know the feeling of having my horse not wanting anything to do with me after I have been away a few days, Lori and Wiggle both do it to me.

    Sheesh MiKael reading your posts makes me feel like you are writing about my life sometimes LOL.

    Raising Paint horses we never know what we are going to get so I gave up hoping for a particular color or pattern long ago too.

    On to the next post.