The Wonder of Foaling

“First Foal of the Season” looks at the early hours of life for a stud colt foaled in the wee hours of Easter morning, 2010.

There have been many before and since this event, and we regard each as a true wonder of Mother Nature.

But there's more to this story, as this little stud colt went on to become a multi-titled Worlds' Champion!

For those of us fortunate enough to have witnessed it, the birth of a foal is always an awesome experience. At Sunset Farm, we have long believed in the importance of being on hand and assisting as needed, especially with a first time mare. Over our three decades breeding American Saddlebreds, we have attended nearly every one of our births.

Our normal regimen is to put the mare in one of our extra large birthing stalls, with plenty of good dry straw. TV monitoring equipment is viewable throughout the farm so multiple people are usually watching the mother-to-be for signs of impending delivery. Our veterinary care is provided by The Ohio State University College of Medicine Vets, always a phone call away.

In our experience, starting the foal breathing at the earliest possible time appears to yield brighter youngsters, so we will often step in to help with that. We also believe that showing babies that they are completely safe by being handling in the early moments of life is key to a gentler, more trusting foal. We will dry off a baby, helping it to its feet if it seems unwilling or unable, and always stay nearby to protect the new arrival from hurting itself in the process of getting up for its all-important first meal.