Saturday, May 29, 2010

Joline and her Full Moon Foal

The full moon was just setting yesterday, having done its job helping to prompt the arrival of Joline’s much, long awaited foal. It arrived between 5 am and 5:30 when the sun was beginning to rise over the pond and there was much goose honking and a heavy mist hung in the air and softened the beams of sun peeking over the pond. Upon an initial quick exam of the navel stump showed the stump was in good shape and there was no equipment showing further back, indicated it was a filly. Mom was doing well but a bit uncomfortable, if one can imagine that, so was given a bit of pain meds to help. The filly scrambled, and then rose and stood on wobbly legs fairly quickly and once up, stayed, wobbling like a drunk around the stall until it found the source it was seeking, her mom’s reservoir of milk, the elixir of life.

News quickly spread about this filly’s arrival and the excitement grew as Face book spread the word and the video of her first steps in her new world. Joline has had a long list of folks who were already her fans and there were so many happy to see the newest arrival and sent well wishes and congrads on the filly power. The filly was lovely, feminine with her large soft eyes and three white stockings and wide blaze down her aristocratic face,  and she was uphill and elegant.

Then later, as this lovely filly was laying on the ground in the paddock and snoozing a bit I took advantage of the moment to check out how the navel was drying and happened to notice something I had not seen earlier, a mysterious hole right behind the navel, just where there would be one, IF, this filly just happened to be a boy with those parts. I quickly lifted the tail and checked what I should have checked earlier to determine sex, and found conformation of her not being a filly. So what the heck? No boy parts showing and no girl parts either. My mind raced at the possibilities of some freak oddity here at work, or worse, this was a medical situation requiring immediate surgery on a several hour foal. A bit of googling this situation and I called my vet who said not to worry that sometimes boy horses just don’t show their parts until a few days older and if he/she was feeling well and all was normal, not to panic.

This was absolutely epic news to me as I have never come in contact nor heard of any male, of any species, that wasn’t very proud of that particular anatomy and who wasn’t proud to show it to anyone, any time. To find this colt shy of presentation, for whatever the reason, and who was also very pretty so one could rightly say he was a filly to look at, blew my brain. I have been breeding horses for too many decades now to have never heard of this of seen it. So by golly, what a surprise, to say the least. This pretty filly was indeed a colt, and is a colt, will be a colt, forever. All of those great filly “f” names got thrown out the door. Now we need boy “f” names…Frank, Floyd, F’up…the possibilities are open to new doors, so bring them on.

A new day, this foal is twice his age today. Today I turned them out and off they went in the paddock and all the stress of the worry of him getting here, and the sex change, melted as I watched the unfurling of those long legs moving with grace and lightness (in his loafers) as this boy danced around galloping with enormous extravagant leg action, like a water bug skating over the waves, effortless and oblivious to gravity. He is still beautiful and graceful, still has the same enormous, black rimmed eyes, perky sharp ears, and so much chrome that he will always dazzle the crowds. He is not a blithe filly, but he is strong, uphill, well built, curious, and a fast learner. This I learned yesterday with our first halter lesson before heading to the paddock. My shoulder is still in spasms of pain from the bouncing around we did. Today he walked like a seasoned traveler to and from his stall to the larger paddock where he gained some freedom to show his other stuff, besides all those reluctant parts.

Joline defends her boy from the curious dogs and other horses with dedication and conviction. She is such an experienced mom, and moves with such care around her sleeping foal knowing exactly where each matchstick thick limb lays with total abandon in peaceful slumber having filled his tiny belly with the rich milk of a mare.

It is a sublime experience to watch a progression of a young animal and no animal is more gratifying than a horse because of the nature of their needing to be mobile so quickly in the wild that they can transform from the staggering drunks of yesterday to the graceful gazelles of just one day old horses, able to keep up with a full size galloping mare if needed, and then later and beyond to becoming performing athletes and partners. This is what I treasure and what keeps me coming back for more.

Foal watch is over for another season. My sleep is coming back to normal, almost. I am glad I really had no druthers whether this particular filly happened to really be all boy. It actually suits me just fine, but I do find it funny given the circumstances. Life is nothing but a surprise and they do keep coming. My vet and I have had a good chuckle over this one and it is funny to look at this colt and think of how differently I looked at him when he was a filly. Now that he is a confirmed, BOY, I just have to come up with the right masculine name, maybe …Franque? Again, I am open to more suggestions.


  1. Wow, what a great story! I'd never heard that either! Margaret, he is just beautiful - I love all that chrome...he sure is one handsome fellow! I look forward to keeping up with him as he grows and matures.

  2. thanks. the story will continue...

  3. WOW! That's pretty incredible. I'd been wondering what name you'd pick for the filly after you got to know her better. Ha!

    How about "Fooled You" for the registered name?

    Can't wait to meet him. Frank? Fonzie? Fosse?