We have a 21 year old stallion who is excellent physical shape and health. He has a reoccuring problem with plugging up and that has become hard to manage due to his low libido. It is increasingly difficult to get him to mount. He is VERY well endowed and it is difficult for him to live cover. Any thoughts on how to manage this hormonally? When we get a collection the semen quality and quanitity are within normal parameters.
While Testosterone may have an initial impact on libido, it will be short-lived, as stallions have a negative feedback loop effect on GnRH and ultimately testosterone production if levels are artificially elevated. Putting this another way, the end result of giving a stallion testosterone will be to reduce his testosterone levels, so don't do it! In addition, as a result of suppressing GnRH production, FSH production will also be reduced with the result that sperm production will be reduced - a double whammy!!
I would start by looking at soreness issues. He's 21 years old, and it's not unusual to see soreness in older stallions - sore backs/hock/hips/stifles - with the end result that it hurts them to mount and breed - so they don't! Phenylbutazone ("'bute") or Banamine an hour or so before collection time can be like viagra for some of these older chaps!
If he has blocked ampullae, then your first few collections are going to show excessive numbers of dead sperm, and will NOT be within "normal parameters", so either he doesn't have blocked ampullae, or your evaluations are not of those ejaculates (or are inaccurate). Repeated collections on a regular basis (regardless of using the semen) are required to clean out these chaps, and I suspect that it is trouble with that to which you are referring.
Remember too that you are in the very early part of the breeding season, so stallion enthusiasm will not be high in some cases yet - give it a few months and you may well see an improved libido.
If it were my stallion, I'd start with evaluation of soreness and perhaps try a little painkiller of some sort (with my vet's approval of course) and see if that helps. If you do that, and it doesn't improve, revisit here and we'll see if there isn't something else that can be suggested to help.
}Sorry I made the suggestion--The vets around here seem to use it with sucess to get the a stallion up and interested. Once nature has taken it interest things normally seem to work out. Spring is in the air, or Love is in the air.
Yes I agree that you should look at pain issues if you already havn't. Eliminate those first if any.
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