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Very premature foal

Putting it here because I think all the CoTHers will find this interesting. I follow Katie Van Slyke on tiktok. She’s a big breeder of Quarter Horses. Anyway, this year one mare foaled about 2 month early. It’s going to be an amazing journey for her and this baby.

I found her on Facebook too, so here’s one of the first links. She’s trying not to get too attached to him, but she’s doing all she can since he’s a fighter. Also, she’s quite successful and has the money to take the best care of him.

(1) Facebook

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I’m not sure why everyone fawns over her. She seems nice enough, but she sure does put out a lot of content without much real world experience. She’s the Kim Kardashian of the stock breed world, except instead of being famous for a tape she’s famous for spending $1M buying VSCR.

Not sure what her plan is with this foal if he makes it. I’d be more interested in hearing from her vets or listening to the educational aspect of the situation than watching videos of her shoving a teddy bear at it while it struggles and thrashes around trying to get up, or her talking about it giving her “kisses” when it’s clearly trying to latch on to something looking for milk.

To each their own, clearly it resonates with some people. :woman_shrugging:

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I know less than nothing about the QH Universe.
But I found her vlog interesting.
There was input from the vet (or tech) on foal’s bloodwork/white count, etc.

Good to know financially she can handle the gonna-be astronomical vet bills.
She does say the foal has a future as a pet, if he survives.

@Arelle I’m one who finds the term “furbaby” nauseating, but her interaction with the foal did not have my teeth clenched.
Like you said: to each…

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I don’t get the feeling that Katie is uneducated about horses. She has shown in the past and her family has bred QHs for years. I do think that a lot of her content is aimed at non-horse people who don’t have the knowledge to understand a lot of technical terms, so it is “dumbed down” a bit to horsey people. I don’t necessarily see that as meaning the creator herself is uneducated, she just knows her audience.

I’ve followed her content for a few years now and will be following along with interest to see how it turns out with this preemie baby. I’m sorry that this happened, but I agree that best it happened to someone with the financial means to give the foal its best shot at survival.

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I’m with FromTheGalaxy. Seems her content is good for the horse world, maybe she’ll be responsible for bringing some new people in. She seems like a nice person, who works hard for what she has. It’s not easy constantly creating content, cripe, I barely view many of the videos that come across my social media once I’ve seen a few from the same creators.

If you go on tiktoc you can see more of the posts about the little guy, it’s only 1 per day just to keep the people updated. Looks like you have to scroll thru all the FB posts to get to the ones about this baby.

She knows he probably won’t make anything but a pet, but wouldn’t it be wild if he did turn out to be a great show horse? (my thoughts, not hers). Anyway, there was a post that she’d heard from a lot of followers who wanted to create a gofundme, but she said she’s got the vet bills covered, so don’t. I think she’s straight up for that.

I certainly couldn’t afford to try to keep that foal alive, no matter how much I wanted to so glad he was born to a person who can. I imagine the vets find this an interesting case. I hope he pulls thru.

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This exactly. From what I’ve seen she has been around horses her whole life and is very knowledgeable, but knows that a lot of her audience isn’t. I’ve honestly learned a ton about the AI/surrogate breeding process from her. Her (relatively young) program has already produced a Congress multi-champion, so she’s no dummy when it comes to breeding nice horses.

I’m crossing all my fingers that this colt makes it. He really seems like a fighter, and is in the best home to make sure he has a chance.

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This for me too I’m afraid. I found watching her interaction with the foal quite uncomfortable viewing. He repeatedly tried to avoid her hugging and stroking but is essentially unable / not allowed to express as he would by skipping away from the touchy feely human himself due to the necessary confinement.
Fair play to her for giving it a chance though.

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I agree. I don’t see the interest except for teaching non horse people the basics.

I feel like if there wasn’t a big audience, that foal would have been pts. I understand not trying to get attached, and that Seven is super super young, but…she kept saying “12 hours, 12 hours, just 12 hours at a time”… Plus, I think she’s a serious hunter. I understand how the world works, but those cute little Smoochie, Moochie, Bluebelle & Maybelle!!! :grimacing:

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This just triggered a thought … this was kind of my first impression, but I think my feelings were influenced by the cutesy language.

Thinking about it, what she’s doing isn’t so different from the “imprinting” theory that a lot of people practice. And most foals are less-than-thrilled to be handled at first, in any case. I’d be concerned about overly stressing a vulnerable foal, but on the other hand, handling foals a lot and getting them used to tolerating stuff they don’t like at an early age often (if done by a skilled handler) results in a well-behaved older horse.

(And I’m not saying that it isn’t possible to raise perfectly well-mannered, well-trained horses who are minimally handled as foals. I know, I’ve worked at a farm that field-bred horses and we didn’t even start halter-breaking the foals until they were weaned. Both approaches can be successful - though I don’t recommend neglecting hoof care until the foals are weanlings - if done by skilled horsepeople.)

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I’ve worked on studs who did handling from birth and I’ve worked on studs who worked with them more from weaning and I think the character of the dam and sire dictate a lot of how the foal perceives things in how that follows through into handling and training.
I bought two foals for myself this year and they’ve had a fabulous start, really well handled by super competent skilled horse people. My job here has been so easy as they lead, loaded, mock tied, were groomed, feet picked out / trimmed etc before coming home and I just carry that on and expand their boundaries from here.
But both of them were happy to have humans in their space and lie down with them from day one as the dams were completely relaxed about it and right there with them. They were bred as best friend personalities (RMH x PRE)
I think it’s the complete lack of awareness towards how uncomfortable the foal was in the videos that got me, because its more likely to have the opposite effect on the foal - human close is stressful, not pleasant and as they can’t get away that in effect increases the stress.

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That FB link above isn’t working for me. I found her social media but there was a lot of stuff to wade through. Can someone link to to the content of the foal?

I have honestly never heard of her, even though I lived locally and think she might even be real life acquaintances with a friend of mine. So I’m just being nosey as someone with a sick foal background and possible local connections. :upside_down_face:

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She’s in Tennessee. I use tiktoc and that’s where I found her. She’s the same name on there and you can go to her profile and find all the ‘seven’ videos from there. I linked her Facebook profile as I know a lot of people don’t like tiktoc.

Yeah, I lived in the same area for many years. I’m now realizing I’ve been to her farm.

Well, I hate to ask, but what was it like? Is she truly a good person or is she manufacturing videos and drinking hard likker at night cackling at how she’s making all kinds of money from the ‘rubes’ who are watching? :grimacing: :smiley:

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Beautiful farm. They are legit.

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Eh. To me your breeding program doesn’t exactly need to age like fine wine if you hit the birth lottery and have the money from the get go to be buying premium mares and breeding to expensive premium studs. And the extremely young horse she had do well at Congress :nauseated_face:That whole thing makes me gag. Show me a 2 year old or 3 year old that can do what those horses do with a very light 30 rides over some months I will be ok with it. Not the case so no thanks.

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Like I said, to each their own.

However, remember that I am actively involved in this side of the industry. Not everything is as it appears on social media.

There are a lot of really amazing equine social media accounts full of knowledgable people sharing their lives (for example, I’ve been loving Boyd Martin’s series on developing a young horse), and then there are some social media “influencers” who mesmerize and enchant people but don’t have the experience or background to really be speaking as subject matter experts on their choice of content.

As things are shared online, my word of caution is to simply take everything with a grain of salt. The OP saying this influencer is a “big breeder of quarter horses… [who is] quite successful” tells me that the story has successfully been sold. Which - fine - if she gets more people to buy a horse and come join us in the industry, then it’s a success. I’ve just also seen the alternate - where someone sees someone online, tries to emulate what they’re doing, and is left high and dry - and I think it’s important to put a reminder that social media is a curated image.

Who knows - I also live a few miles from Fallon Taylor and run in parallel circles, so maybe I’ve just seen this movie before and I’m being a fun ruiner for all. :rofl:

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Honest question: I don’t quite understand you here?

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Fallon Taylor is a “famous” influencer online who has an army of preteen girls and clueless adults that worship her; she puts out a lot of content that is positive and designed to be uplifting, but in reality does some pretty trash things and then gaslights and attacks anyone who questions her about the behavior. The epitome of “don’t believe everything you see online” because reality is vastly different.

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Is Fallon Taylor using the name Katie Van Slyke on social media posts?