Sometimes I love the Internet

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Bassetluv

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The other day I was at another website that has a forum, and someone happened to post a link to a website called "MareStare". It's pretty cool, actually...horse breeders set up webcams to keep vigil over mares who are about to foal, and they use this service to do so...plus, it's broadcast over the 'net so anyone can watch. I can only access a few of the live feeds, since some of them require a certain software download, but I've been having fun going through the list and seeing some of the ones that do show up.

Well, tonight I was just about to head off for bed (something I *will* do once I've posted this ;)) but on impulse decided to check the site again. And this time I saw a live feed from a farm that raises Gypsy horses. They have four webcams set up on four separate stalls, and within moments of looking at it, I had the awful feeling that something was wrong with one of the mares. This particular mare has already had her foal (probably a few days ago, from the look of him), but she was lying down in the stall and was very quiet, while the foal was trotting all around her. At first I wondered if she was sleeping, but then noticed that the foal seemed quite agitated. So I watched for about 20 minutes, and saw that the foal would run around, then go up to his mom and nudge her, obviously trying to get her up. She just lay there for the most part, but would every so often lift her head, and then kind of sigh and put it back down again. The foal kept at her, nudging and running back and forth, and I was sure there was something wrong. Judging from the way the mare was lying, I suspected she was stuck (*cast*) in the stall...in a position where she couldn't get her feet under her to get up. I kept praying she would stand, but after about 35 minutes couldn't take it any more, so I found the farm's phone number and called them.

As it turns out, I was right...the mare was stuck and couldn't get herself up. The woman I called went to the stall with someone else and managed to roll her over and get her up on her feet...then the woman called me back and thanked me profusely, stating that if the mare hadn't been helped, she could have died before morning. I am just grateful that the mare was okay, and the little guy was so happy that his mom was up and about again!

So sometimes the Internet can get a bad rap, but sometimes...well, I guess it can be a blessing too. :D

Oh, btw, if anyone wants to check out this website:

http://www.marestare.com/

(Go to the tab at the top that says "Public cams" and select "Live cams" from the dropdown; you will see all of the farm listings that have live feeds.)
 

Nela

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Awwwwwwwwwwwww good on you! I'm so glad that babe still has its mama! How awesome of you to have listened to your instincts, and to have called :rose:I'll have to check this site out too. Thank you for sharing!
 

Amy27

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Wow, that is so amazing. Especially considering she could have been dead by morning. You have to feel so good about what you have done. Good job!
 

BethM

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Wow, that is awesome!!!

Good on you for making the effort to find the phone # and call- most people wouldn't have done that. You are like that mare's guardian angel!
 

SnowyShiloh

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Yay! You saved a horsie! Nice going :D

I went and checked out the website... Too cool! Does anyone know what a horse in labor looks like? I'm watching the Bailey's Performance Horses cam and it says the mare, Hog, is due June 4th. She's standing verrrrry still, but bends her back legs every two minutes or so for a minute at a time. Horsie contractions perhaps?
 

Bassetluv

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I know...in some way it felt like I was led there to see that, just so the mare could get some help. I was actually heading off to bed when something urged me to go and look at the site again, and that webcam was the first one I went to, just a random pick. At the very least, calling the owner (farm was located in Missouri) saved the mare and her foal from frustration and maybe some fear. It was kind of sweet and heart-wrenching to watch, both at the same time...the mare wasn't struggling or panicked, but she did look upset; but the foal was definitely worried. He would trot around the stall (once in a while kicking up his heels, lol), but then would go straight back to his mom and literally push her with his nose, trying to encourage her to get up, and he would paw at her, trot away, come back and do it again. I suspect if the mare had remained stuck overnight, something might have happened...she may have at some point panicked and thrashed out, hurting either herself and (or) the foal. And even with webcams installed, an owner can't monitor them 24/7.

Isn't it a great website? I'd love to get the plug-in to be able to view more of the webcams (most of them won't work for me), but have problems downloading software sometimes. It's still fun to go and peek in on the webcams I can see, though.

As for a mare in labor, I'm pretty limited in my knowledge, but I do know that they will act restless hours (or even days) before labor sets in, and will begin to pace incessantly, probably once contractions start. They might paw at their sides, lie down and get up, lie down, get up, changing position often, or stand still and extend a leg, shift positions...for the most part just looking very uncomfortable. Then once labor is full-force they will lie down and start to push. (That's my guess.) ;)
 

SnowyShiloh

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I've been checking in on Hog ever since last night! She is still pregnant :) Wonder if I'll get to see her in labor!
 

Bassetluv

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Hog is still pregnant. :D

There's a couple of webcams up for "Mulligan's Run Farm" that are cute to watch. They don't have anyone left foaling, it appears, but they have a webcam set up in the barn and one outside, and I watched some of it this morning. They have miniature horses, and they're adorable! LOL...as I watched, one of the women was trying to get the mares and foals into the barn from outdoors and into their respective stalls, but - there's always one in a crowd - one foal just wouldn't behave. His mom went in just fine, but he of course went the other way. And then as one of the women tried to get him back, all of the other horses decided that, hey, if he wasn't gonna go into the stall, they would all go instead. So it turned into a free-for-all of horses trying to squeeze their way past the annoying human so they could have a party in that one stall.

They finally got the foal back into the barn, only to have him go zoooooming past the woman and then suddenly put on his brakes. eeerrrrrrrrrrr! It was hilarious to watch. :biggrin:
 

SnowyShiloh

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Yep, she is still pregnant! Love her fat belly. I wonder what color she is?

The little foal sounds so cute! I clicked on one of the cameras and there was a mama horse and her baby, and a person cleaning out the stall and taking care of them. I closed it though because I feel like I'm spying when there's a person! I know they put the web cams up themselves so it's no secret, but I still feel weird watching when there are people :)
 

SnowyShiloh

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Oooh, there's an update from Hog's owner saying she looks like she's going to have the baby soon!! I hope I get to see it! Going to be checking in like crazy over the next few days.
 

Bassetluv

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The really amazing thing is what technology allows us to be able to do now, I think. Every evening I watch "Little House on the Prairie" (don't laugh, I like that show), and one they aired the other night involved Charles' son and his friend. They were going to walk from Walnut Grove to Sleepy Eye alone, cutting through forests to get their faster, and I think they said it would take them close to 3 days to do it. The two dads, of course, decided to follow behind them quietly, just waiting (and expecting) the boys to have difficulty, and would then rescue them once they did. (Of course the boys had no problem at all, but the two dads ran into a myriad of problems.) I remember watching the show and thinking, today these boys would probably have all sorts of access to travel - train, bus, etc., and each would be carrying cell phones in case they had any problems. What a difference there is in the world today, where we have access to so much and can be in constant communication, if needed. Not always a good thing, but yeah, it's pretty amazing that someone from another country can call a horse owner and say, "I think something's wrong with your mare"!

(Snowy, check Hog!!!!!!! :biggrin2:)
 

kirsterz09

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Wow well done for contacting them you are that horses hero!, I've been watching one of the cams after you've mentioned about the site and I'd just gone back to it when I noticed that one of the foals was stuck under the divider between 2 stalls, the mother was really starting to panic so I called the stables from the UK and let them know, alike with you,they were very grateful and quickly went to help. This is such a wonderful site it helps to provide eyes when they can't be there. Again well done Bassetluv and thanks for letting us know about the site.
 

Luluznewz

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Thanks for helping the mamma out! I've had horses get stuck in fences and things and it is very scary. Its so great that you called!

I'm going to check out the site. Thanks for posting it.
 

Bassetluv

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I've been watching one of the cams after you've mentioned about the site and I'd just gone back to it when I noticed that one of the foals was stuck under the divider between 2 stalls, the mother was really starting to panic so I called the stables from the UK and let them know
I might have run across that one, as I was looking at some cams the other night and noticed one where the owner had posted a very grateful reply to the person who called and informed them that their horse was stuck. That's awesome!!

Right now I'm watching a mare in the Netherlands (Dream Team Minis) as the mare looks like she might foal in the next few days. :)

I love this site too!

Oh, I meant to mention the other day that not all cams are on horses; some have them set up for lambs, and some are dog breeders. Of those though, I have only seen one who has the cam running (or that I can access without a plugin).
 

SnowyShiloh

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Bassetluv, which camera is for the Dutch horse that's going to have a baby? I need a new horsie to stalk :D
 

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