Tuesday, August 15, 2017

19 Days

I can't believe that Maisie is already 19 days old! She is very sassy and adorable. I'm a little bummed that she's not the most cuddly little baby, despite me handling her a ton when she was born. She likes to be scritched, you can run your hands almost everywhere on her body, but she doesn't really want to hang out and would much rather be tearing around the paddock instead.


I have several mom friends on Facebook who post updates every couple months on their babies, what they like, what they dislike, what they've learned so far, etc and I thought it was a cute idea.

2.5 weeks old:
  • Likes:
    • Butt scritches
    • Neck scritches
    • Running
    • Walking into mom's head when she's trying to eat
    • Mimicking mom eating and drinking (aka splashing in the water trough)
    • Nursing
    • Laying in the hot sun on the gravel instead of her nice, deeply bedded shady stall with fans 
  • Dislikes
    • Halters
    • Anyone touching her head
    • Being told no
    • Getting restrained

I love how their blazes match!
Laying outside in the rain

First time she's let me cuddle since she was born

First day in the pasture!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Picture Day

I can't even remember which day it was now with how crazy life has been but a week or two ago, KP and I took Trask and KP's filly to get some pictures done just for fun.

It was pretty hectic - KP had to work night shift and we hauled Trask, momma horse, and baby all together, meaning that I had to drive separate so KP could take my car to work while I took all the horses home.

Trask's one fault is that he's a little bit herd-bound. Of course he fell in love with momma and baby during the trailer ride and as soon as we separated them he got very freaked out. After they were done taking the baby's pictures, it was my turn to try to wrangle Trask. He was not very in to standing still... at all. Finally we ditched all the on the ground photos and I lunged him before getting on. KP wanted me to ride outside but I was pretty sure no good pictures were going to be had since the mom and baby were turned outside and all he wanted to do was look at them with his head in the air like a llama.

Once I was on though, he was very good. I think we had one of the better rides to date. He was pretty hyper still, but it made his canter so uphill and wonderful. We did have a little bit of bucking, but he's not very good at it so it was more like leaping across the arena. Overall, I was super happy with him, he listened to my aids and acted almost like a grown-up horse! (Ignore me, I look absolutely awful, I really just need someone to yell at me all the time to put my shoulders back and look up!)

Hopefully I can have this same photographer out to do pictures of Jetta, Maisie and I this fall, I really like how she did them!

The pictures turned out lovely, these will eventually be used for his sale ad. Most of them are unedited, so if we end up using them I'll probably edit them, but the photographer did edit a couple, which turned out stunning (namely this black background one!):

My favorite

My second favorite

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Merely Gold

((Picture dump! These photos were taken between 0 and 4 days old ))

I can't believe that my baby is finally here! What a week it was too.

Starting at the beginning... I started foal watch on Thursday the 20th. I was coming down twice a week or so just to see how Jetta was doing and help out around the barn. When I came down that Thursday and closed up the barn later in the evening, I noticed she was breathing really hard and seemed uncomfortable. Her heart rate was over 70 bpm and she wasn't eating her hay. I thought for sure maybe something was going to happen! I spread out all the straw and stayed up late to check on her. At one point she was laying down and breathing hard and I thought for sure baby was on the way. But when I checked back at 4am she was up eating her hay like nothing had ever happened.

I ended up coming back every night to check in on her which made for A LOT of driving back and forth. And very little sleep. It did help that I ordered a wireless camera to check on her with. I LOVED it. This way I could check on her without disturbing her and it was nice not to have to get out of bed. Very handy! (This is the camera I got - very cheap and the app you use isn't that great, but for the price it is awesome!)

Not bad quality for a cheap camera! Taken at night even

She ended up going at 335 days, so 5 days "early" means that she was born on July 27th (7/27/17 - according to my mom that means she has to be special because she has 3 seven's in her birthday!). Timing was... iffy. Of course this is the one day in the last week that I didn't go down to my parents. I was exhausted from being on foal watch and it was my best friend's last night in town before she moved away so we went to dinner and stayed up late talking. So of course I did my last check at midnight where Jetta was eating away showing no signs of baby and then passed completely out, missing my 2 and 4am checks. I woke up to a phone call from my dad at 6am: "So, uh, your baby is here. Everything is fine, just thought you'd want to know. It's a filly."

I made the hour drive down as quickly as possible (crying of course because 1) I missed my baby's birth and 2) I was so relieved and happy that she was here!).

Cannot handle the cuteness level

Tiny, perfectly matching back socks
She is literally the most perfect thing I have ever seen. I am not kidding when I say that, because though I would probably think that regardless of what the baby looked like, I could not have imagined a prettier baby with more perfect markings. I am absolutely smitten.

She was up and standing by the time I got there and my parents said she was having difficulty finding the right spot on the udder to nurse at and Jetta was making it hard by moving around so much. She is SUCH a helicopter mom. She absolutely has to have baby in her sight at all times and preferably she would have her nose on baby too. Baby couldn't nurse because Jetta kept following baby around so I had to halter Jetta and make her stand for a bit. Jetta was literally spraying milk everywhere and had been dripping milk for 3 days before she gave birth (not much, but still), so I was really worried about the colostrum. After baby figured out the milk bar, I let momma go and just enjoyed watching and playing with baby.

All the naps
Trying to decide how to get the halter off....
Exploring the water tank (don't worry, it got cleaned shortly after this picture!)

I die over those giant fluffy mule ears!

"My baby"

"Did you say I have mule ears?"
I also gathered up the placenta and examined it. Of course Jetta dragged it around and walked on it so there were several holes in it and I couldn't determine if there were any pieces missing. KP was working a really busy week so she didn't have time to come down and look at it so I took it to the local vet (very awkward phone call with the receptionist...) and he looked at it. He didn't think there were any pieces missing, though it was hard to tell in the non-gravid horn there was a hole near, but not at, the tip. We decided to just monitor her temperature and digital pulses to make sure she didn't have any retained placenta. I also got a foal IgG snap test from him so I could check baby's antibody levels myself. This was the main thing I was stressing about due to the fact that Jetta had lost a lot of colostrum and that she was a maiden mare.

Tasting the wood
I needn't have worried though! With a little bit of baby wrangling I got some blood (she was very good for it, but I'm not sure she's forgiven me yet) and the snap test showed she had excellent IgG levels! One less thing to worry about because I was stressed to the max that day worrying about when the baby was going to poop, if she was drinking enough milk, if Jetta was going to step on her when she was laying down, if Jetta was going to founder from toxic shock if she retained the placenta, etc. I am a very worried mom.

Everything's been great though! We decided to go with Maisie for her name. She's a spunky little thing and enjoys bucking and tearing around the paddock. Later this week we'll turn them out on the 3-acre pasture.

Also! Not to be forgotten, the winners of the baby contest! Molly won the guess for the gender/markings while Genny was the closest to the day of birth. I will be contacting you guys soonish about your prizes (my life is still crazy right now, so once I have a second to breathe I will get in touch!)

And lastly, would anyone be interested in more posts on the breeding/foaling process? For instance, foaling kit supplies, cost of breeding, etc.?