UC Davis Veterinary Medicine News, Spring/Summer 1997
Flood Survivor Delivers Foal
With the help of veterinary medicine, Queen Freckles Too, a Quarter Horse
belonging to Sandy and John Glynn of Arboga, Yuba County, overcame a series of
life-threatening difficulties as she carried her foal to term.
On January 4, rescue volunteers Dr. John Madigan and Butch Littrell of UC Davis
found Freckles hopping on three legs where she was stranded in neck-deep water
during the New Year's flooding in Northern California. Dr. Madigan says, "I could
feel a big hole in her leg, but couldn't even get the leg out of the water." Freckles had
fallen victim to injury from objects such as hidden barbed wire fences, lawn
mowers, tractors, propane tanks or other equipment that had become dislodged and
obscured by the high water. The two rescuers led Freckles to higher ground on a
The next day, UC Davis faculty member Dr. Robin Kelly treated Freckles and other
rescued horses that had cuts and puncture wounds. When the water at the levee
receded enough to load injured animals into trailers, they were brought to the
Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital (VMTH). Upon arrival, Freckles required
immediate surgery to repair the gaping laceration, from knee to fetlock, in her left
leg. At the time, she had completed almost eight months of gestation.
The Glynns' barn had been devastated and their pastures reduced to mud, so
Freckles was invited to stay at O'Sullivan Farms in Browns Valley, home of the
stallion (Gold Coast Approval) to whom Freckles had been bred. When Freckles
developed severe colic symptoms April 2, Shayla Sullivan called Browns Valley
veterinarian Dr. Wayne Wulf, who diagnosed Freckles with uterine torsion and
referred her to the VMTH.
The horse was brought immediately to the Large Animal Clinic where Dr. Rodrigo
Vasquez performed surgery to reposition the fetus. All went well, and Freckles
returned to the farm in Brown's Valley. She gave birth to her foal May 7.
Shayla Sullivan says, "The Glynns haven't decided on an appropriate name for the
colt yet, but I call him 'Miracle.' "
Queen Freckles Too and foal