Student Blog from Eliza Bradbeer (UK) and Ciara Corrigan (IRE).

Student Blog from Eliza Bradbeer (UK) and Ciara Corrigan (IRE).

5th Apr 2022

After a fantastic Cheltenham week topped off by the superstar Facile Vega doing the stud proud winning the Champion Bumper, normal day-to-day life has recommenced this week. Eliza’s enjoyment of the Cheltenham Festival was cut slightly short as she was on nights from Thursday through to Sunday therefore, sleeping during the day was a necessity to get through the 13 hours shift starting at 6pm-7am. She had an extremely busy 4 nights, foaling 16 mares. The foals born were by established top class sires including Sea The Stars and Kodiac to name two, as well as a couple of first season sires in Earthlight and Far Above.

When arriving for the night shift, every mare in the yard of which there are 40, are checked to see their bag size, whether they have waxed or are running milk – these are the main indications of a mare soon to foal. During the night the mares are checked every 15 minutes to see their progress throughout the night and if there are any imminent signs of foaling, they are brought into the foaling unit to be foaled. The night’s experience is fantastic, and we are so fortunate to have such brilliant night foaling supervisors, Tina and Lauren, who have previously completed the course. They are fantastic teachers and amazing at what they do, so it is a privilege to work with both of them.

During our busy week work we were both placed in Murphys yard where there are currently 21 mares in the last few weeks of their pregnancy awaiting to be moved to the foaling unit to deliver their foal. We monitored their bag development and move the mares that are developing at a quick rate to the foaling unit. We can’t forget to mention the very famous Living Legends who this week finally got their winter rugs off and got to enjoy the glorious sunshine.

On Monday, we had a lecture from veterinarian Andrea, on practical veterinary care and therapy where we were taught how to carry out a whole-body veterinary check of a mare. The practical lectures, are a great asset to the course as it allows us to put things we have learnt in class into practice.

We also had a guest lecture from Sally Ann Grassick this week where she discussed the importance of communication and media in the industry. Sally Ann discussed her project Thoroughbred Tales which relays positive stories from the horse racing and breeding industry all around the world.


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