Esmerelda had to be separated from the other two yearlings a while ago. She was getting to hate the boys anyway and it was time for her to go live with the mares. But in order to introduce her gradually, we tried first putting her out with her mother. Exclusive is old and a bit crippled up with a calcified ankle (not that it slows her down anywhere near as much as it should). She’s a bit grumpy though, since she’s a boss mare too.
Eventually we started putting Soupy in with them as well when it became apparent that Exclusive had very little tolerance for youthful exuberance. Soupy has just retired from the track (and is looking for a new career). There’s nothing wrong with Soupy… she just never really succeeded at the track. And she’s feeling GOOD right now. She likes Esmerelda. Soupy pretty much likes everyone. People and horses both. She’s a happy mare.
I took some pics of them this morning right after we put them out in the big pasture for a change. Soupy and Esmerelda were having a grand time. Exclusive just sneered and went off to graze.
Just home from work… I would have been home earlier, but as I was pulling out of the driveway, Linda sent her brother running after me. Loula was in labour out in the paddock. So I ran back and brought her into her stall. We had quite an audience for the birth. Linda’s brother, her friend Kelly, and her two young nieces were all there visiting the other two foals. Exceptionally good timing on their parts.
Anyway, it all went quite normally. So normally that Loula thought it would be good to stop and have a hay snack while the foal was halfway born. Great idea Loula. She started choking. Quite a bad choke actually. I massaged the left side of her throat a little bit and squirted some water in her mouth with a syringe. All the dramatic gagging was bit frightening for the visitors, and dad hustled the girls away shortly after the birth. I think maybe he was worried the mare would die in front of the kids. But after ten or fifteen minutes she spit out a bunch of goopy hay and was back to normal. The delivery was easy. I helped a bit by pulling his front feet out, but Loula could have managed nicely on her own.
When I left, the colt was up and trying to nurse. He’s a huge chestnut with lots of chrome. Very strong and handsome. He’s by Old Forester, who is a young stallion, but has produced pretty well already.
I have to go back to help feed, so will take some photos then.