Crap, crap, crap

The phone rang late last night.  Jo told me that Velvereta had foaled.  The foal was dead.


Poor, poor Velvereta.  There was no reason that we know of or could see. It looked like the foal was born dead as her eyes were not open.  A beautiful filly foal too.  

Last night Velvereta was incandescent with rage.  She would’ve killed Jo so she was left alone to stand over her dead baby as the bag was out, there was nothing anyone could do and this was the safest course of action.  She had Melinda with her who was keeping a very low profile.


It is a horrid time for all of us, mostly for Velvereta, obviously.  She is cross and doesn’t understand.  You can see it in her eyes and her stance – hard and embittered.  She is grieving for the filly she would’ve loved.  Velvereta has always been an excellent mother.


Her filly was not some random result for the sake of breeding either. We are totally aware of the market at the moment. We already had a buyer lined up who desperately wanted a filly from her and Indy.  Their combined breedlines are highly sought after.


Although last night she would not let Jo near her or the baby, by this morning Velvereta had slightly mellowed.


She said she could accept a carrot, (I had brought a bag), but she was still very unhappy and we did not crowd her and read her body language all the time.


We will leave Velvereta with her foal until she walks away.  When she does, then we will move her back into the big field and bury her baby.  She is allowing Melinda nearer so it shouldn’t be too long.


I feel very sorry for her. It is Vitamin all over again and we don’t know why.  She looks terrible too.  We will give her time and then put her out with Indy again. She does think he is gorgeous so hopefully he will take her mind off this horrible experience.  Next year, I will be better and I can set up camp and we will watch her 24/7 to try and prevent this tragedy happening again.  Like Vitamin. we know she has had live foals before.  Last night, it was all so quick.  One minute she was walking around, the next, a dead foal beside her.


I apologise for such a sad post but I wanted to show any of you that are thinking of breeding from your mare, that it isn’t a done deal.  You don’t always end up with a fluffy darling foal and sometimes there is absolutely nothing you can do about it.  When you make the decision to send your mare to the stallion for this to happen, think it through, I beg of you.  Think of all the what-ifs because there is always the risk no matter how hard you try.

You have livestock and therefore, it is inevitable that you could have dead-stock.  Shit does happen.  Would you be ready for that?


Poor Velvereta. I am so sorry, my darling girl.


16 thoughts on “Crap, crap, crap

  1. Karen

    How terribly sad, it always hurts, especially when all seemed well. My thoughts are with you and your poor Velvereta. Hugs xx

  2. betty2dogs

    It is very sad all the way around. Everyone anticipates the new baby, and sometimes they just don’t make it. Condolences to you and your help and your poor mare.

  3. gillian ramsay

    thanks for sharing this post Frances even though it is terribly sad. Reading this has made me understand a little more how Freja my GSD must be feeling after a phantom pregnancy last week ended with no pups. She looks lost, and confused, and is very guarding and protective, and obviously wonders why she has no puppies-she was the most fantastic mother too. When she lost a pup from her litter last year she would not leave it either-in fact she had almost licked the skin off the belly trying to revive it. We left it with her until she was ready to give him up, and still she came and put her head in the box and gave him a lick as we took him. This so-called ‘ superior race’ could learn much from animals. Breeding animals is the most wonderful-and heart-breaking thing, x

  4. Freda Freestone

    I was terribly sad to read of Velvereta and her poor foal. I know that you guys are such responsible, knowledgeable and caring owners. This kind of situation must be so upsetting for all concerned. Thinking of you all. Fred x

  5. Martine

    Awful. So sorry. Poor Velvereeta. I will never forget our mare whose foal was stillborn, she searched and searched for her baby for days afterwards

  6. Sandy

    I am so sorry for your loss, but do appreciate your post. It is so, so hard to lose a baby. My heart goes out to all of you, especially to Velvereta.

  7. Linda

    Can’t hit the like button on this. Just want to say your readers are here for you in hard times like this.
    We love you Frances, Jo, ponies. So sorry.


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