Cross post--inducing abortion in filly

The pony filly I bought to be a companion to another horse just arrived from out of state. The vet who did the PPE 2 months ago did not mention possible pregnancy, but now she looks as though she might be pregnant. The seller got her from a ranch where I now suspect she ran in a mixed age and sex herd. She’s only 2 1/2 and the sire might be her father or brother, so terminating the pregnancy seems indicated. However, she’s maybe ~6 months along?? Just starting to show slight abdominal swelling.

Anyone have experience with terminating a pregnancy at this stage? Is it more dangerous to end the pregnancy vs. letting her carry to term? Vet care is tough to come by in this area; she will be looked at in a couple of weeks, when an out-of-town vet comes by on his monthly circuit.

I ordered an “at home” equine pregnancy test, and there’s an experienced ranch hand who can palpate her, so soon we could know her status, and give the vet a heads up before he visits.

Presumably hormone(s) are given? How many shots? Can the vet do “one and done” or will she need a series of injections? And, again, is it too dangerous at this stage so the pregnancy should go to term? Thanks.

Typically you give one or multiple shots of prostaglandin/lutalyse (usually one shot if it is in the first 6-8 days or so). But it gets less effective after that time and after 120 days or so most vets won’t do it at all. At six months I would expect many vets might not perform a d&c/surgical type abortion either if it is not indicated for medical reasons. Unless there’s been multiple instances of close inbreeding in the mare’s pedigree it will likely be okay. Her age isn’t ideal but with good supportive care it isn’t necessarily a disaster either.


It’s too late. If it were a truly life threatening pregnancy you could have a fetotomy done but even that isn’t without risk.

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As someone who has been present to a mare aborting do to natural reasons at 6+ months I don’t think you would be emotionally prepared for what will come out either. It’s going to look like a little horse and since you don’t know exactly how far along she could be it could be alive depending on how you go about it. You will never be able to unsee that let alone know you did it on purpose plus subjecting your vet to helping if they will do it. Not to mention any potential complications that may arise (retained placenta, infection ect….)

I would just wait and see what comes out when she reaches full term. It could be fine and if it’s not then you can address that when you reach that point.


Mares breed at this age in the wild. It’s not ideal but it’s not necessarily dangerous.