Lilly Pond Foal Rescue
"where orphans become family"

About Nurse Mare Foals

Race Horse Industry - Nurse Mare Foals

There are many atrocities stemming from the race horse industry.  One of which is the treatment of the foals from  “nurse mares”. 

It begins with the pregnant mare that is destined to spend a great deal of her time pregnant to produce as many future race horses as possible.  Naturally, mares will give birth to a foal every couple years or so.  Not in the horse racing industry.  For some, once the mare gives birth the foal is taken away from their mother to be raised as a race horse.  The mare will then be impregnated again and the cycle goes on and on.  The foals that are taken from their mother are often put with a nurse mare in order to get their milk.  The problem with that is in order for the nurse mare to lactate and provide milk for the expensive future race horse, she had to have just given birth to her own foal.  So what happens to that foal?  Well, there is the problem.  The foal becomes an orphan.  Since it is illegal to send foals under 6 months to the slaughterhouse, the nurse mare foal is often killed or discarded and left to starve to death.   All this in the sport of horse racing!  Thank goodness for rescues all over the country, including LPFR, that are able to make a difference in the life of a foal that deserves a shot at life in a caring environment.  Personally, I have taken in nurse mare foals 30 days old or less.  These poor babies deserve a chance to live a full and productive life, free from pain and abuse!  

PMU Industry – PMU Foals

The pregnant mare urine industry produces a lot of orphan foals as well.  Most of the PMU foals go to auction and eventually go to slaughter.  These discarded foals are viewed as a by-product of the mares that are used solely for obtaining high estrogen concentrated urine during their pregnancy for the purpose of producing drugs like Premarin (Pregnant Mares’ Urine).  Typically, Premarin is prescribed to reduce the symptoms of menopause in women.   

Most of these facilities have gone out of business with the creation of synthetic drugs but there are still some operating farms.

What does this means to us?

Of course there are many reasons that a foal may become an orphan such as rejection from the mother or death of the mother. For whatever the reason, we are dedicated to nurturing, training and providing a safe environment for as many of these foals as we can and ultimately find their “forever home”.

Keep in mind these orphaned foals are not given to the rescues. We pay anywhere from $200-$300 for each foal just to remove them from their terrible fate. Then, of course,  the milk replacer that is needed to feed these foals until they are old enough to eat pelleted feed runs about $100 a five gallon bucket. You will probably be shocked at this cost but add on hay, bedding, supplies, training, medical care...

In the end, it is worth it as these foals get constant human contact and nurturing from very early on which makes them easy to handle and very trainable since they already have your trust. In my experience, most foals are leading and picking up their feet to be trimmed by 3 months. For more information on nurse mare foals or orphan foals in general you can find tons of informative articles on the web.

LPFR
Where Orphans Become Family
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