"Neigh, neigh, whinney!" ...HORSE
A new born foal (colt) needs special care and attention. These guidelines, along with the supervision of a veterinarian will ensure adequate care for your newborn horse.
- When the mother is in labor, be sure to pay attention to the total amount of time during delivery. Hard labor of 30 minutes or more will require the assistance of a veterinarian.
- While the umbilical cord will most likely break naturally after birth, you may help break the cord if it is still attached 15 minutes after birth. Use your hands to break the narrow part of the cord off about two inches from the foals stomach.
- Once the foal is successfully delivered, back off and let the mother and new foal have much needed bonding time
- In extreme cold or wet weather you may want to rub down the horse with some clean straw or a warm towel.
- You can help the foal through the healing process after delivery by dipping the umbilical stump in some iodine (2%). Do this on the first day only – it is not necessary to continue this process beyond the first day unless infection develops. Any time you suspect an infection, call your local veterinarian.
- The foal may need some help in starting to nurse. Guide the foals mouth to the mother’s clean udder with your hand.
- Shortly after birth, your new foal will need a tetanus shot. Consult with your local veterinarian about how and when to do this and other vaccinations.