Colorado State University Offers New Foaling short Course to Horse Owners and Breeders

A one-of-a-kind, hands-on short course in foaling out mares is being offered to owners and breeders by Colorado State University’s Equine Reproduction Laboratory on Jan. 16 and 17.

Unlike most classroom-only courses, this short course will combine classroom learning with actual "wet lab" experience in learning when to help with a foaling and when to call the veterinarian. Participants will actually put their arms into facsimile mares and learn how to determine what position the foal is in.

"What we are trying to teach," said Dr. Pat McCue, head of the Equine Reproduction Laboratory, "is how to recognize what is normal for a foaling and what is abnormal."

Many mare owners or new foaling attendants have limited foaling experience and do not know what to expect. This course will teach them how to recognize the stages of foaling as well as when it is necessary to get a veterinarian involved.

"We will emphasize appropriate decision-making to optimize a successful outcome," McCue said.

Lecture topics include care of the late-term pregnant mare, prediction of foaling, normal foaling, routine care of the newborn foal, complications of pregnancy and foaling, foal resuscitation, problems in the post foaling mare and medical issues of the newborn foal.

Laboratory sessions will include training in:

–     appropriate on-farm methods to assist with delivery of foals and when to call for assistance in a difficult foaling,

–     proper on-farm use of foal resuscitation equipment and techniques,

–     examination of the placenta,

–     methods to predict foaling,

–     use of labor-alert devices,

–     evaluation of colostrum quality, and

–     how to test for passive transfer of maternal antibodies.

Space in the course is limited and registration is required. For more information, visit: