I thought I was ready for the foaling season..... shots, iodine, enemas, all in hand. All the mares were brought up from the lower pastures and assigned their own paddocks.

I was as nervous as an expectant parent and excited about a new crop of babies. The first mare was due in three days.

Everybody was fed except me, so at 7:00p.m. that evening I headed for the house.

After a quiet meal and a cold beer, I walked out to the barn to check the mares and say "good night". There she was, laying off in a corner. My heart missed a beat and instinctively I knew something was wrong. I cleared he fence, crossed the field and knelt beside her. A quick observation and a sick feeling told me our best producer has prolapsed, gone into shock and died. With he whole uterus laying out behind her, I frantically searched for the baby. It was twenty feet away and still partially in the sac. Immediately, I picked it up and trotted to the barn, set it down on some clean hay in an empty stall, and raced to the house. Returning with a blanket, I cleaned its nostrils, cleaned and dried the baby, gave it an enema and put iodine on the navel.

I ran back to the house to call the vet. With no other mares to put the baby with, he said that all we could do is hope for the best and that he would be out first thing in the morning.

Feeling like I had to do more, I paced the kitchen, reached into the refrigerator, I grabbed a Miller beer. I put it down with one gulp and knew what I was going to do.

After rinsing the two empty bottles, I went back to the field. Sitting beside the dead mare in the dark, I said a little prayer and gave thanks to the "Old Girl" as I filled the bottles with milk. Capping one bottle fr the morning and putting a nipple on the other, I sat in the stall with the baby well after midnight and he slurped the last drop.

As I got up to leave, I couldn't help but say, "Bred and born in the USA. Welcome to the world , Mr. Miller."

My vet was out the other day and he said, "this baby may not have a mother, but he has real good daddy!"

This page placed by Pasos on the Web! Article is Courtesy of A.M. McCann, Manager, Center Hill Ranch and Courtesy of Adam and Michelle Wilson, Rancho Micada, Phoenix, AZ who now owns Mr. Miller.