Late-Term Pregnancy Troubles in Broodmares

Learn about five complications veterinarians might encounter toward the end of a mare’s gestation.

Late-Term Pregnancy Troubles in Broodmares
Monitor your broodmares regularly, and communicate any possible problems to your veterinarian without delay. | Photo: iStock

Five complications veterinarians might encounter toward the end of a mare’s gestation

You’ve invested a lot into your mare this past year—time, money, energy. You’ve hauled her to various reproductive exams and provided her with first-rate care. And after a long gestational wait, your hopes and expectations are high. A health scare or, worse, loss of mare and/or foal, would be devastating. Fortunately, serious late-term complications—that is, within the last 100 days of the 320-365-day gestational period—are relatively rare.

“The good news is that most of the issues we see in our late-term pregnant mares are relatively uncommon, so the average mare owner or breeding facility may not see problems every year,” says Ryan Ferris, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACT, assistant professor at Colorado State University’s Equine Reproduction Laboratory, in Fort Collins. “Some complications may even be once-in-a-lifetime type of events.”

Here we’ll describe how to recognize, avoid, and address five late-gestation emergencies broodmare owners and managers might

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Written by:

Freelance journalist Natalie DeFee Mendik is a multiple American Horse Publications editorial and graphics awards winner specializing in equestrian media. She holds an MA in English from Colorado State University and an International Federation of Journalists’ International press card, and is a member of the International Alliance of Equestrian Journalists. With over three decades of horse experience, Natalie’s main equine interests are dressage and vaulting. Having lived and ridden in England, Switzerland, and various parts of the United States, Natalie currently resides in Colorado with her husband and two girls.

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