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   General Breeding Information
     Stallions and Stallion Management
     Mares and Mare Management
     Foals and Foaling



General Breeding Information
Cleanliness Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 by B. W. Pickett, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University
         The single most prevalent reason for reduced fertility today is lack of cleanliness or sanitation.

The Breeding Season Actually Starts in November in the Northern Hemisphere!!!
         by Dickson D. Varner, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Charles C. Love, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate ACT
         Terry L. Blanchard, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Steven P. Brinsko, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Texas A&M University
         Although the upcoming breeding season is 3 months away, a successful year for 2005
         begins with preparation of mares and evaluation of stallions right now.

Breeding Soundness Examinations
         by B. W. Pickett, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University
         Although some of you may feel that the prior breeding season has just ended, it is time to
         begin thinking about the upcoming breading season.

Endometrial Biopsy
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         A uterine biopsy may be collected from a mare by a veterinarian to evaluate the histology or
         microscopic anatomy of the uterine lining or endometrium

Uterine Culture
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Culture of the uterus to determine if one or more microorganisms are present or if the mare is 'clean'
         (i.e. free of organisms) is an important diagnostic test.


Stallions and Stallion Management
Counting Spermatozoa by B. W. Pickett, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University
         A hemacytometer, originally designed to count blood cells, has been used for many years to
         count other types of cells. Toward the end of World War II, with the advent of artificial
         insemination in cattle, it became painfully obvious that other methods of counting spermatozoa
         had to be developed, because of the length of time it required for an accurate count to be
         obtained with the hemacytometer.

Shipping Equine Semen by B. W. Pickett, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University
         When the stallion manager and the mare owner have confidence in one another and a spirit
         of cooperation, shipped semen has many fewer disadvantages and a much greater chance
         of success.

Extenders by B. W. Pickett, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Colorado State University
         To quote Dr. R.H. Foote, one of the most noted reproductive physiologists of our era,  "Artificial
         insemination (AI) was the first great biotechnology applied to improve reproduction and genetics of
         farm animals."

Breeding with Frozen Semen By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD, Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         The birth of the first foal conceived using frozen semen occurred almost 50 years ago. Use of frozen semen was
         approved by the AQHA in 2001 and in 200_ the rule was adjusted/an amendment was passed to allow for the use of   
         frozen semen from a given stallion even after he has died.

Breeding with Cooled Semen
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Artificial insemination of mares with cooled-transported semen has become a routine procedure in the equine                
         breeding industry. The ability to cool semen makes it feasible to ship semen from one location to another...


Mares and Mare Management
Are You Ready? by E.L. Squires, M.S., Ph.D., hon, ACT, Colorado State University
         Dr. Squires outlines a strategy for assuring that mares are ready for the next breeding
         season, with considerations for different categories of mares.

Low-Dose Insemination
         by Dickson D. Varner, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Charles C. Love, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate ACT
         Terry L. Blanchard, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Steven P. Brinsko, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACT
         Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Texas A&M University
         Many advances have been made in assisted reproduction for horses in recent years,
         and several breed registries in the United States have adopted many of these newly-found
         techniques.

Breeding the Older Mare
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Mares can continue to produce foals well into their late teens or early to mid 20's. However, mare
         owners should realize that the prognosis for fertility of an older mare decreases each year.

Endometrial Cytology
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Cytologic evaluation of the uterus involves the collection and interpretation of cells lining the uterus
         (endometrium) and within the uterine lumen.  Cytology is used in conjunction with culture and biopsy
         in the diagnosis of endometritis

Pregnancy Tests   
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Economic pressures of the equine breeding industry result in a demand for accurate early pregnancy diagnosis.  Some  
         horse owners presume that a mare that fails to come back into heat within 3 weeks after breeding is pregnant.  That is 
         not necessarily true.  Up to 10 % of bred mares that fail to return to heat are not pregnant.  Reasons for a nonpregnant
         mare not coming back into heat include persistence of the corpus luteum (pseudopregnancy), seasonal effects on 
         ovarian function, and some ovarian disorders. The most reliable test for pregnancy is ultrasonography. Pregnancy tests
         based on hormone levels in blood or urine are generally used only when palpation and ultrasonography per rectum is 
         not possible.

Speculum Examination
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, PhD,
         Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         A vaginal speculum examination is a routine component of a mare reproductive evaluation. The goals
         of a speculum examination are to evaluate anatomic characteristics of the cervix relative to stage of
         the estrous cycle and to detect abnormal conditions of the vagina and cervix


Foals and Foaling
Management of Retained Placentas b y Patrick M. McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
       Retention of the placenta is one of the most common problems of the mare in the early postpartum period. A
         placenta is considered to be retained if it has not passed within 3 hours after foaling. The incidence increases
         following abortion, dystocia, obstetrical manipulations, cesarean surgery, induction of labor, placental
         infections, fescue toxicity and other factors.

Foal Diarrhea b y Patrick M. McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         A majority of foals will exhibit diarrhea at some time within the first 2 months of life.  In most cases, the
         diarrhea is mild, transient, not contagious to other foals and not life threatening. However, in some
         instances, diarrhea can be contagious, severe and possibly even fatal.
Foal Rejection by Patrick M. McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Rejection of a foal by its dam can take several forms. The mare may avoid the foal, prevent the foal
         from nursing, or may become aggressive toward the foal. Mares in the latter category may assume
         a threatening posture, pin their ears back when the foal approaches, charge or chase the foal,
         squeal at the foal, or in more serious cases, may kick at or bite the foal. Mares have, on rare
         occasions, seriously injured or killed their foals in the first few days after giving birth.

Foaling Fundamentals by Patrick M. McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomat American College of Theriogenologists
         Patrick M. McCue presents an informative array of facts and tips that will be of interest to
         beginning and experienced equine breeders alike.

Failure of Passive Transfer in Foals
         By Patrick M. McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Newborn foals enter the world without antibody protection. Foals are entirely dependent on
         antibodies absorbed following ingestion of mare's colostrum in the first few hours of life for
         protection against infectious diseases.

ARS Equine Colostrum Refractometer
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Colostrum is the thick, sticky yellow fluid produced by the mammary gland of the mare
         during the last few weeks of pregnancy.  It is comprised of carbohydrates, fats, proteins
         and electrolytes. Colostrum is rich in antibodies or immunoglobulins that are critically
         important for immune protection of the newborn foal.

Meconium Impaction in Newborn Foals
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Meconium is comprised of digested amnionic fluid, gastrointestinal secretions, bile, and cellular
         debris that accumulate in the intestinal tract of the late-term fetus.1 It is usually dark greenish
         brown or black in color, firm pellets to pasty in consistency and is generally passed within the
         first 3 to 4 hours after birth.

Colostrum Bank
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         An owner or farm manager generally does not know in advance which foal will need supplemental
         colostrum.  An on-site supply of frozen colostrum can be critical for the health of a valuable neonate.

Placenta Evaluation
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
The placenta is the connection between the developing fetus and the mare and provides the means for obtaining  
nutrition and for gas exchange.  Examination of the placenta can offer valuable insight into the health of the newborn 
foal.  Consequently, it is recommended that owners, farm managers or foaling attendants perform an evaluation of
each   
placenta.

Jaundice Foal Syndrome
         by Patrick McCue, DVM, Ph.D., Diplomate American College of Theriogenologists
         Neonatal isoerythrolysis (NI) or Jaundice Foal Syndrome is an uncommon but potentially life-threatening condition of   
         newborn foals.  It has been estimated to occur in 1-2 % of equine births.  The condition occurs when a foal ingests 
         colostrum containing antibodies directed against its red blood cells (RBC’s).  Destruction of RBC’s leads to release of 
         a pigment called bilirubin that may cause the gums, white parts of the eye and feces to become yellow or jaundiced.

 
 
 
 
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