Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Behavior: maternal

Synonym(s): Post-parturient behavior, Mare-foal interactions

Contributor(s): Sharon Crowell-Davis, Prof Katherine Houpt, Natalie Waran, Elaine Watson

Introduction

  • Maternal behavior describes the behavioral responses of a mare towards her foal.
  • Care of the young is energetically costly, but is necessary if the foal is to survive. The function of this behavior is to ensure the continuation of an individual's genes.
  • There is of course considerable variation amongst mares in the care they provide, but where no maternal behavior is shown, this can be considered to be abnormal.
  • Maternal behavior in horses is well described, but the control of the behavior is not well investigated.

Normal maternal behavior

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Causes

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Presentation

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Normal changes in maternal behavior

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abnormal and problem maternal behavior

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Crowell-Davis S L & Houpt K A (1986) Maternal behavior. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract (3), 557- 571 PubMed.


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