Uh . . . Meet Priestess! The question above was asked by Dr. Booth during a colic exam. He didn’t find an impaction – he found a foal! Now this might have been an unexpected discovery that warranted some extra care and feed for Priestess but otherwise wouldn’t have been a big deal. But as I mentioned Dr. Booth was there treating Priestess for colic – not a good condition for an expectant mare to be in! 
Priestess came from the kill pen at Sugar Creek – we noted that she was on the thin side but otherwise seemed to be sound and healthy – she rode nicely. On Saturday she looked drawn up in her flanks and her haunches seemed more hollowed out. The stressful conditions that horses go through at Sugar Creek and their limited access to water can lead to dehydration though so we weren’t too concerned – yet. We gave Priestess a tube of vitamins and electrolytes and made sure she had lots of hay and water in front of her. On Sunday she was worse – extremely drawn up in the flanks, stiff, and not interested in eating. Our thoughts ran to colic, we called the vet. . . Dr. Booth came on Sunday evening and announced Priestess’s impending motherhood while checking for an impaction. I thought he was kidding - when he said that she had less than two months left in her pregnancy I was speechless. . . She was way too thin to be that pregnant! 
Dr. Booth administered mineral oil to make sure we weren’t dealing with colic, he took her heart rate (normal) and temperature (normal), told me to keep an eye on her and away he went. (I still only half believed him that Priestess was at such an advanced stage of pregnancy given her gaunt appearance. . .) We kept an eye on her, fenced a small paddock in the yard for her to have some grass and made sure she was drinking her water. Fingers crossed. . . . Tuesday evening I had to make an unexpected trip to North Carolina for a family emergency. (We put Priestess in with the other horses and had someone tend them while we were gone.) When we returned on Thursday evening we found a ‘drawn up’ Priestess standing in the barn with her head down. Not good. She again had no interest in food and she was stiff. We put some molasses in her water and gave her some bute. . . Friday we put her back in her paddock in the yard. She showed some interest in the grass and was drinking some water.
Saturday Priestess still wasn’t looking good, she was very ‘drawn up’ in the flanks and stiff. It was time for another call to Dr. Booth. He re-examined her and announced that she was “still pregnant.” At this point we were concerned that perhaps the foal had died, but Dr. Booth didn’t think so from his examination. Once again he took Priestess’s temperature and hear rate – they were both normal. She was eating some and drinking. Dr. Booth’s evaluation was that the foal was making Priestess uncomfortable leading her to ‘draw up’ and be stiff. He prescribed a bute regimen and told us to keep her walking. We are watching her closely! This girl has a sweet disposition and has been patient with all of the ‘doctoring’. Not only was Priestess dumped in the kill pen but her unborn baby was as well. We are doing everything we can to make sure that they both turn out healthy!!