Featured Blog: How to Manage the 'Slow' Stallion in the Breeding Shed

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April 28, 2016

Posted by Dr. Dave Scofield in Stallion Management

Training 3 Juvenile and older males entering a new career as a breeding stallion don't have the luxury of a changing cascade of hormones or an event like parturition to jumpstart their innate nature to show them how to be a stallion. There is likely only a change in routine, location, or in their training schedule that cues them into their new roles as breeding animals. Many stallions make the transition seamlessly. Simply acting on the behavior they have been trying to use for years, allowing their behavior to mimic their springtime rise in testosterone. When exposed to a female, they have little doubt about the job at hand and will readily take to live cover or phantom training. Additional information for training the young stallion for collection can be found in our article, Collecting Semen from the Young Stallion. However, for some, the transition proves far more difficult and oftentimes frustrating for the stallion and for the staff at the shed.

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What Can Cause a Mare to Lose Her Pregnancy?

April 01, 2016

Posted by Karen Wolfsdorf, DVM, DACT in Mare Management

What Can Cause a Mare_Ascending placentitis originating at the cervical star Mares can develop problems during pregnancy or be at high risk of losing the pregnancy for a variety of reasons. These include age (old mares frequently have endometriosis in which the uterus is unable to properly supply the fetus with appropriate blood supply and nutrients), physical conditions (placental and fetal fluid abnormalities; body wall tears; chronic debilitating conditions such as laminitis and Cushing’s disease), and acute disease or injury (placentitis, uterine torsion, surgical colic, colitis, acute laminitis, or fractures). When a mare becomes stressed or debilitated, inflammatory chemicals and prostaglandins increase and induce abnormal uterine contractions and potential pregnancy loss. Reproductive problems that arise during gestation, however, when detected and diagnosed early, can still result in the survival of the mare and usually the foal. The abnormalities most commonly seen during the middle to late stages of pregnancy will be discussed in this article.

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Should Frozen-Thawed Semen Be Diluted Prior to Insemination?

February 26, 2016

Posted by Paul Loomis in Frozen Semen

Dose Volume_Cooled vs Frozen For veterinarians and technicians accustomed to inseminating fresh or cooled semen in large (20-60 ml) volumes, the idea of inseminating 0.5 to 4 ml of thawed frozen semen can be intimidating.  During processing, frozen semen is concentrated by centrifugation and is typically packaged in small 0.5 ml straws at a sperm concentration that is often as much as 5 to 10 times greater than cooled semen. Therefore, a full insemination dose of frozen semen may be contained in just a few milliliters of volume whereas the same number of sperm extended for cooling may require 30-40 ml of volume.

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Can Genetics Turn the Art of Stallion Selection into a Science?

February 03, 2016

Posted by S.A. Brooks and L. Patterson-Rosa in Industry

Genetics_Horse Chromosomes The horse genome contains all the information required to direct the growth and function of a foal, from conception to death. This enormous “text” is organized into chromosomes, much like the volumes of an encyclopedia. The domesticated horse possesses 32 unique chromosomes, and most cells carry two copies of each chromosome for a total of 64. Gametes of course are the exception, carrying just one of each of the chromosome pairs to the future offspring. This article will discuss information about genotype vs. phenotype, genetic testing, recent genetic studies performed on stallions, and current genetic research being performed on the "freezability" of stallion sperm.

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Please Note - photos used in these news articles are available in the public domain, have been purchased through istockphoto or (when referencing breeders or horses) have been submitted to Select Breeders Services Inc. by the breeding farm or horse owner. Photo credit has been provided where applicable. If at anytime you see something that needs to be addressed please feel free to contact us directly.

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