Mare Exams: Mares are evaluated for suitability for breeding based on overall health and conformation. First, a thorough exam is done of the mare’s reproductive tract including vulvar conformation and vaginal and cervical health. Next, an ultrasound is performed on the uterus and ovaries. This may be followed by a uterine culture or biopsy. Blood may also be collected for hormone evaluation.
Stallion Exams: Stallions are evaluated similar to mares. The testicles are examined for symmetry, orientation, and size. The stallion can be collected artificially and the semen can be evaluated for color, sperm concentration, motility, morphology, volume, and total count.
Stallion Collection for fresh or cooled insemination: A stallion can be collected off of a live mare or a “dummy” utilizing an artificial vagina. The semen is collected and processed and can either be available immediately to inseminate a mare or can be cooled and shipped overnight to a mare on a different farm.
Breeding the Mare: In order to breed a mare with fresh or cooled-shipped semen, the mare’s cycle must be evaluated. The mare will have to be tracked using sequential ultrasounds during her heat cycle to know when to collect or order semen. Generally, semen is ordered when the mare produces a follicle (egg) of 35mm or greater and the uterus appears “ready”. Semen is then inserted sterilely into the cervix. The mare is checked at 14 days post ovulation for pregnancy. The procedure may be repeated if the mare does not get pregnant.