A Wonderful Surprise
We had the most amazing, wonderful surprise in April. We'd bred our sweet Hanoverian mare EM Diotima three times last summer and she was confirmed not in foal after being ultrasounded last September. I thought I'd try breeding her one more time before giving up, and I had the vet come in April to check her to make sure she was healthy and ready for breeding.
Our vet always talks as he works on our horses, explaining what he's doing, but on this occasion he went very quiet as he ultrasounded her. I thought the worst - that he saw something bad, and not able to contain myself any longer I asked what was wrong. He told me nothing was wrong but that she was carrying a big, healthy foal!
I couldn't speak, except to say oh my god over and over, and then call for Doug. We were giddy with excitement! We assume she's in foal to Sir Gregory since he was the final breeding, but I guess we won't know for sure until the foal's DNA is checked at the time of registration. The other stallion she was bred to was De Niro (sire of five of the horses at the London 2012 Olympics).
Anyway the third breeding was July 31 last year so 240 days puts her at about a week from now. Normal gestation for mares is anywhere from 320 - 360 days though, so you don't really get a due date.
Last night she started to drip a little bit of milk and she has tiny beads of 'wax' on the ends of her nipples although you can't see them in the picture of her udder. You can also see that she has hollows on either side of her tail head. This happens as the muscles relax in preparation for giving birth.
I'm hoping to have happy, healthy mare and foal photos to post soon!