Monday, July 9, 2012


As I've said many times, there is never a dull moment around here!  Yes another case in point happened exactly two weeks ago, on a typical busy Monday morning.

It was a crazy Monday morning, our sitter L had asked if I could pick her up that morning since she had to drop her car at the garage that day.  No problem!  I headed out to get her (she's only 10 min away) while J did his morning check of all the animals.  I was nearly at her place when I got a text from J.

J: Omg. What a surprise this morning
Me: uh, oh good I hope
J: I guess
me: ???
J: on your way back yet?
Me: just about
J: Very unexpected

and that was IT!  So here we are (L and I) in my car trying to figure out WHAT he could be talking about!  I know there are a few eggs under a broody duck, maybe she hatched those finally I was thinking.  L said maybe he was able to get the escaped peahen in (more on that adventure in another post).  We were both wondering what in the world it could be when we pulled into the driveway.

Sydney and J both come practically running out to great us.  Syd insists we both close our eyes and led us through the house to the back deck.  "Open your eyes" she screamed and then let her best little girl 'EEEEEE' of excitement.  LOOK, she said!  LOOK MOM, LITTLE RED HAD A BABY!

Holy Sh-Nike's'! She's right.  um, yeah Little Red had a little foal there running all around and looking chipper as could be.

excuse me...WHAT!?!  This was a complete and total shock for all of us.  We had just purchased Little Red at the end of March and were not told she was in foal (or even exposed for that matter).  So we hadn't even considered the possibility.  D'oh!  Of course not knowing she was in foal meant we gave her no prenatal care and have no history on who the daddy may be, if she had any prenatal care before we got her, etc.  We were both delighted and nervous about this new little one.  J said he thought it was a girl so Syd promptly started thinking up names for her while I was more interested in making she mama and baby were ok!

Little Red seemed to be doing really well and baby looked lively enough but J and I both wanted to get our vet out right away to check everyone over and give us advice on what to do now.  We put mama and baby in a stall with lots of hay, a bit of grain and a huge bucket of water. We then called the vet and were able to get him out at 3pm that day.

So, vet shows up (thankfully with an intern to assist as well) and asks for a run down of what happened.  I gave him the condensed version ('just the facts ma'am') and he proceeds to check both mama and baby over.

First thing he mentions is that, um yeah, it is NOT a girl at all but a cute little colt!  Next thing he notices right away is that it does not look like baby had been feeding from mama.  He tries to get the little guy to start nursing but by this time poor mama is so full of milk the little guy can't get a good latch.  So, the vet hand milks her, gives her a shot of oxycoton (to help with uterine contractions and milk supply let down) and then we both try to get little guy to take some of the milk (technically colostrum at this point).

We don't have much luck getting him to take the calf bottle he had brought so I asked if we should try a regular baby bottle, the little guy seemed to want the milk but the calf bottle was just too big for him.  He thinks a baby bottle is worth a shot so I went inside to try to find one.  I come back out and he had expressed more milk from mama, which I'm sure she was grateful for (any mom can probably understand what I'm getting at! lol).  We tried to give baby the bottle but he was still a little confused on how to get milk out of it.

At this point we are starting to hit a time when the vet explains that it does not look like he had fed and explains how imperative it is that we get him eating ASAP.  He brings out a very large syringe with more of a tubed end.  He is able to get almost 4 ounces down baby this way.  After the first couple ounces, he tries again to coax baby to drink direct from mama but still no luck.  He's got the general area down but can't seem to find the 'target'. lol

Once we had some food in him the vet does a check of both mama and baby and says that both seem to be in remarkably good health but that he did want to vaccinate mama since we didn't know her history. By this time it had been almost two hours since he arrived.  He gave me instructions to try to get baby to eat from mama every two hours and if he couldn't we'd need to milk mama and feed it to baby.  oh boy!  this is turning into quite the adventure!

Hubby came home shortly after the vet left and immediately went out to try to get baby to feed again (at this point it was about two hours later).  It took him almost 45 minutes but he finally did get the little guy to figure it out.  WOOHOO!  Hubby knew that if he couldn't get baby to feed he would be the one doing the nighttime feedings as I am already feeding our little one at night. ;)  Extra incentive if there ever was one! Hubby went out a few more times that evening to make sure baby was nursing and all looked well.  whew, that was a close one there!

Since then (now two weeks later) the little colt still does not have a name but is doing fantastic!  After a couple days we let him and mama out with the other mini horse and mini donkey we have and they have all been doing great!  We are having so much fun watching this little guy go running and jumping all over the place.

This was quite an unexpected surprise, we are so very thankful everything turned out ok with delivery, etc and are still trying to wrap our minds around everything!

1 comment:

  1. Glad he's doing ok. I was just wondering about him! He is a lucky little guy - maybe that should be his name!