I'm a first time breeder with an (i believe) maiden 14 yr old mare. I've always wanted to breed her, but it was never the "right time". well i recently lost my mini-prix jumper on mother's day(broke his neck on a tree) and figured there is no right time, so now or never. she's an excellent mare. healthiest horse ever (i'm not just saying that because she's mine). i have a vet that i really like and can work with well and a 2trainer that breed a lot. i plan on using frozen semen(maybe fresh/cooled semen).
i would just like to know what some of the problems i could encounter and how probable they are. what are a lot of the finances i'll run into. as much information on embryo transfer as can be at a foaling clinic (should i decide to use that for the foaling). and any other advice that you might deem worthy for me.
my next step are the vet exams.
thanks so much kate and penny
ELizabeth Hardy (126.96.36.199)
Posted on Tuesday, May 28, 2002 - 07:14 pm:
Kate On AI and ET check with your breed association before considering either: some breeds do not allow these proceedures (one or both)..
The only Registry that does NOT allow either that I know of is the Registry for Thoroughbreds The American Jockey Club..Live Cover only.
The AQHA does not allow ET. The AHRA (Arabian) allows both.
So if you want a reg foal make sure the breeding proceedure is legal for Registry you plan on registering the foal to.
Second ET can be very very expensive and is not something I would consider unless you have a champion mare that has a very active show schedule or a mare with a proven record of not being able to carry a foal to term.
In deciding between frozen semen and Cooled semen.. there are pro's and con's to both. some stallions do not freeze well.
first thing I would have the mare examined by your vet before you go any further.. he may need to do a culture and biopsy.
Finaces are tricky if everything goes normally then it can be fairly inexpensive
I had my mare bred by AI last year. She was at the time a 5yr old maiden mare. And getting her pregnant took a lot more effort than either I or my breeder anticipated. Vet checked her prior to breeding and certified her healthy and sound with no infections and no problems he could see at the time of the exam.
she has Silent heats and I felt it would be better if she was sent to the stallion rather than do AI with cooled semen and transporting it.
I sent my mare to the stallion which saved me on shipping charges and the breeder only charged me once for collection even though she was breed mult times.
they started breeding her in June of last year ( she was 5yr old maiden) and finally got her preg on Oct 23 2001. Each time she was breed the would confirm she was pregnant or not 10 days later several times she was confirmed at 10days but by day 30 was back in season again. It turned out her progesterone dropped after concieving and she would lose the pregnancy.
She was trialed with regumate this was the solution.. she is now on regumate and will be so til 30 days prior to delivery... how long a mare stays on Regumate is usually determined by the vet and mine suggested not to take her off
MY cost for this foal 1000$- stud fee 250 Collection fee 180$ for six months of ultrasound 1000$ board at Breeders 130 $ to transport mare back to home barn 500$ for regumate to this date. 180$ vet fees ________ Total right now and foal is not even born:$3,240
She will have to repeat her yearly injections which willbe another 200$ plus another 3 months of regumate approx 270$
then there is the cost registration fees and vet charges if there is a problem during foaling.
Anyway hope that answers a few of your questions. Please note the charges are estimates and may vary depending on the area of the country you live in.
Posted on Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 03:51 am:
Liz- How in the world did they "confirm" your mare in foal at 10 days?
ELizabeth Hardy (188.8.131.52)
Posted on Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 10:08 am:
Kelly the Breeder did the ultrasound ( she used to be a vet tech and has been doing this for quite sometime so she is very good at it.)
Also the owner of the Stallion was learning herself so she did not have to take stallion to breeders for collection. She is now ground collecting him and doing all the actual insemnations on her mares herself but she still relies on the breeder to do the ultrasounds.
Following insemination she was ultrasounded at 10 days and again at 30. I thought 10 was kind of early myself. And I am not sure what Criteara she used to "confirm" pregnancy at 10 days. So maybe I have been misinformed ...but that was her protocol. But before the regumate She was confirmed twice pregnant by ultrasound at 10 and 30 days but then came back into season shortly after 30 days ultrasounded again and no pregnancy.
After this happended twice she was trialed with regumate, ( Also they did test her progesterone levels on the second time ans found that they dropped considerably which caused the loss of the pregnancy) The Regumate proved the answer and she is now 7 months preg .
This has taught me a lot but I am still learning. Most of what I knew prior had to due with Human conception ( I am a Nurse) not Equine.
In fact she was ultrasound so many times I was glad that they only charged 30$ per month no matter how many times she was ultrasounded..
If you want to know her name I will email it to you privately .
Posted on Wednesday, May 29, 2002 - 12:27 pm:
You are fortunate that your ultrasound fee was so minimal! She would have to be extremely proficient to confirm a pregnancy at 10 days.
Many mares need the Regumate to maintain a pregnancy. If money is no problem, I have started mares on Regumate when there was no time to check on the progesterone levels. I think that your vets decision to do so after 2 cycles was a good call.
Well, I don't know if this will help you any, but this is the way ot happened for me. Last year I bred an 18 y.o maiden TB mare. Biopsy was done, 2A (the best investment you can make in this process is the biopsy...and the stud!) Culture and breeding soundess was also performed, I think total, my pre-breeding vet check was $300-400. Negative culture said that Abby could go whenever her body was ready. I am breeding live cover, which cuts back on shipping and collecting costs. First breeding was in June, she was brought home a week after cover (bad idea by the way). Ultrasound at 14 days ($70-100's depending on your vet). No baby, but good follicular activity. Vet recultured her, and it was again clean, so that was a little more money. She was sent back to the stud. Bred again July 19. 18 day ultrasound anohter $70ish. Small conceptus, so the vet came back at about day 38. Looked okay, we saw a heartbeat, another $70ish dollars. She came home a week later, around day 45. Mare care for the extended stay was charged at straight board (I love this stud owner), and I would have paid it anyway, so I don't factor that in. 2 hour trailer ride home, and she resumed regular life, a show a week later, etc (another bad idea!) In October she showed a heat cycle, so I called the vet, who came out a week later at the regularly scheduled 3 month visit for Rhino booster (I think $20 plus farm call for booster, 3, 5, 7, 9 months). Palp and ultrasound showed no baby, good uterine tone, "well resorbed". This was another $100 or so for confirmation of no baby. Crazy horse owner that I am, she is back down with the stud owner now, trying her chances with a different stallion. I sent her to the farm in March so she could adjust and get her cycle settled. First heat we didn't breed, second heat never came so she got a shot of prostaglandin (about $40) which sent her into heat 3 days later. Bred on day 2 and 4 of her cycle. Ultrasound on day 18 showed a 29 mm conceptus, leading us to believe she may have ovulated early, and was actaully 20 days along. Another $400 for ultrasound and Regumate. I am not taking any chances this time. The vet wanted to wait a month for the second ultrasound, which will be tomorrow, around day 47. Another $100. Regumate will be discontinued around day 120. I may bring her home soon thereafter, the stud farm is 2 hours away, and it is driving me crazy not being able to see her. So, all told, here's my breakdown Stud fee (I got lucky, it's free) $0 breeding soundness (incl biopsy) $350 6 u/s = about $550 Regumate x 4 months $300 Rhino boosters $80 xtra culture $30ish trailering $250 round trip prostaglandin $40ish caslick's $65 (I may end up doing this, it is dependent on your mare's anatomy whether she is stiched or not) I would say now I have spent near $1800 including last year's breeding. One thing to keep in mind, that I have ready many places is that they can loose the baby very very easily in the first 90 days. For Abby, it could have been the stress of the trailer ride home, it could have been the stress of the show, or it could have been that the embryo just was not developing right, as evidenced by the small conceptus. I don't know. I am just hoping for this year. My trainer has a mare she bred. She has colicked many times, and had numberous vet visits for that. She also has been bascially out of commission for the pregnancy. There are so many financial and emotional reasons not to breed (are you willing to lose the mare in birth?), but if you are like me, breeding your next show horse out of your favorite mare, the ends justify the means. Whenever my boyfriend asks, I just tell him, I will never have a better equine friend and companion than the one that I breed and raise myself. Good luck to you.
Not even an equine SPECIALIST can confirm a pregnancy via Ultrasound at 10 days. The embryo is simply too small to detect at that time, and mobile as well. FYI
As far as using fresh cooled vs. live cover vs. frozen, etc...here are the pros and cons...
Frozen semen (if your breed allows it) takes quite a bit more expertise to use. you are right, some stallions do not freeze well, and your conception rate diminishes. Unless the stallion is dead or overseas, there really is no need to use frozen semen.
Fresh cooled semen is good if you don't want to transport your mare to the stallion or if that particular stallion does not do live cover. If done correctly, it is a very effective way of breeding. But, then again, you have to pay your veterinarian (i.e. me) to ultrasound, inseminate, and sometimes do antibiotic infusions, oxytocin, etc.
Live cover, for mares that are uninfected (i.e. youn maidens) is the simplest of course. If available, let Mother Nature do her job. It tends to be cheaper in the long run as well. But, sometimes circumstances don't allow it.
Embryo transfer should be reserved for those old, subfertile (or just subfertile) mares that cannot carry a foal to term, due to infection, poor conformation, poor biopsy results, or a combination of the above. Unless, of course you just like spending 1-2000 dollars for the ET process! It is a wonderful procedure, and very effective in getting foals from mares who could otherwise not produce.
Obviously, pricing is VERY dependent on the area in which you live. In AR, we could never get away with the prices you all quoted above. Maybe I need to move!
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