Part of Horse Previews Magazine website. Posted on 3/6/98; 2:00:00 PM.

Taken from the Horse Previews Web Pages


I wanted to share some information with you that may be of use to your organization and its efforts. While I don't know what is commonly used for collecting colostrum other than hand milking, I successfully used a Medela electric breastpump on my mare after foaling in 1996. It was effortless, quiet and efficient and, needless to say extremely gentle on the mare. In case your organization isn't aware of this product, I would highly recommend this pump over hand-milking whenever possible.

In 1996, after foaling, my mare became engorged and this made nursing even more difficult for her weak, newborn to latch on without getting a nose full of milk. At that time, I was a distributor and rental station for Medela products. Medela is one of the oldest and most widely recognized producers of breast pumps and breastfeeding products for women.

I used a Lactina Plus electric pump, separately, on each nipple until the udder was slack enough for the foal to latch on. While I stored the milk in my refrigerator, thinking it would never be used, little did I imagine that ten hours later my 20 year old mare would be in the veterinary hospital, almost dead from an abdominal hemorrage. Her foal was able to have colostrum fmixed in her supplement while the vets worked on the mare. I'm happy to say my mare survived, thanks to the wonderful veterinarians and staff at Texas A&M University vet hospital.

While I regret not sending this story to Medela for their newsletter, I was too busy in the following weeks with a convalescent mare and frisky foal. So, possibly this might be of interest to your organization.


Susan Whiting

Susan Whiting *
Graduate Programs Office
Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics
Texas A&M University
College Station TX 77843-2128
Telephone: 409 845-1779 * 409 845-9274 - fax

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