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Tricky older mare, thoughts?

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » Breeding Problem Mares - Volume 2 » Tricky older mare, thoughts? « Previous Next »


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hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 1
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Thursday, April 07, 2011 - 05:12 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

ok, i will try this for the second time. I think I forgot my user name and password the first time...

Anyway! I have a 16 year old mare that has been given to me. About 7-8 years ago she had her first foal, a RWC. They tried to breed her back to the same stud and she never took. They sent her to a Repro specialist in MO, (who said he didn't see a reason for her not to take, myabe it was the semen as the stallion was aged); they sent her to the stud, still no pregnancy. The local vet said he thought there was some scaring and fluid that might be preventing conception, but it didn't look like any form of aggressive treatment was done. This is all second hand information of course.

So, planning a Culture and Cytology, pending the results of that, I was thinking of regumate 10 days to help tone uterus, lut to induce, try to only breed once by AI, followed by Oxytocin treatment and infusion with a little cocktail we use (yes I know there are different theories on that, but it has worked in the past). Then about day 8 start on regumate again and then do the hormone essay to see if she really needs it or not. might do an early preg check to see if she is an ET candidate.

I have also been thinking of trying Settle with her. Has anyone else had any success with this? I havent found much info on it other than what is written by the company (fluff). I see there are different ways to use it. Any thoughts on the best protocol?

Any other suggestiosn on getting this mare in foal? this is her last year of trying or I will sell her as a show horse. I don't have endless funds to dump, even for RWC quality, lol.
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 3191
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Thursday, April 07, 2011 - 06:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I would lose the Regumate (follow that link for an article as to why). Not only will it not "tone the uterus up" (you would be better off using estrogen), but it can also reduce the uterus' ability to clear fluid, which with this mare sounds as though it would not be a good thing to do.

Settle can be beneficial when there is a breeding-induced endometritis particularly associated with Streptococcus equi, sub. zooepidemicus, however oxytocin alone may be as equally advantageous when used appropriately.
 

Jan Owen
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: 1frosty1

Post Number: 2796
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Friday, April 08, 2011 - 11:27 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I had an older mare that had clearance issues and after trying 2 unsuccessful AI's; I followed the oxytocin protocol laid out by Jos, but I also used the drug Settle. We were successful. It is hard to know which thing worked because I used them together but my vet did think that they might compliment each other....I do know that Settle has a quarantee or they did....I wish you lots of luck!
 

hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 2
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Saturday, April 09, 2011 - 10:55 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jos, I agree with you, mostly. Lol. It has been a few years since I followed peer reviewed studies on this, but, the one I remember is that regumate given for 14 days prior to them coming into heat actually firmed up and toned the uterus. I 100% agree that it would be unwise to use Regumate very shortly after insemination/ovulation. Obviously we don't want to tighten up the cervix prior to the uterus being cleared of all fluid. But again, if there is still fluid by day 8 post ovulation, it isn't going to matter either way (regumate or not). If the egg is fertilized it arrives in the uterus on day 7-9 right? So it would make sense to wait until just before to put one on regumate, not day 3-4. Idk this is just my observation. In years of breeding I've never had a "regumate mare". I've not used it outside of short cycling mares. And even with that I prefer a single dose of lut with a good teasing program.
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 3194
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Saturday, April 09, 2011 - 07:55 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Estrogen will do a better job of toning the uterus, as previously noted, and will also increase blood flow to the uterus, which in turn increases uterine immune response ability. All far more preferable to the potentially negative impact of progestin use in older mares (suppressing fluid absorption and immune response).

The conceptus descends into the uterus at about day 5½ post ovulation/conception.

I'll ask again what was asked in the article I cited previously: Why are you using the Regumate. You haven't given a definitive reason yet! :-)
 

hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 3
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Sunday, April 10, 2011 - 01:42 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Well, I know you prefer waiting to do tests to see if it is needed, but I do feel that if she is going to lose it, chaces are she is going to lose it before day 14... Why wait and risk it only to have to go through the expense all over again? Why not put her on regumate, wait until after day 18 and if pregnant do the tests, as pointed out, stall side kits are very affordable, and my first posts says that is the intent. If it isn't needed, by all means she will come off of it, BUT for the few dollars it costs on the inbetween time, it makes little sense to me not to. Most vets wait until they have lost 2-3 embryos before saying "let's try regumate". I don't want to take that risk. And while I can hear you saying "just in case isn't good enoug" let's be clear that I am not planning to leave her on it until day 120 "just in case" I'm planning to test as soon as she is confirmed in foal, and yes, I realize that has its issues.

On the estrogen. I must have missed something when I learned about it? I thought estrogen was responsible for the loosening of the cervix, among other things that go along with "being in heat"? Obviously estrogen is present all the time, but progesterone is dominant hormone, so are u suggesting to give estrogen while she has a dominant CL and therefore will not be affected by the estrogen? I am confused? Also, will supplimental estrogen not have an effect on FSH and LH? Could that not do more harm than good?
 

hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 4
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Sunday, April 10, 2011 - 01:50 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

To support putting them on regumate before day 14:

My understanding is once the embryo/conceptus arrives in the uterus, it "travels about" communicating somehow (last I knew it was unknown exactly what happens, but they did know that if the embryo was trapped in one part of the uterus that the communication failed, mare's body didn't know she was pregnant and produced prostiglandin and came back in heat). Anyway, my theory on some of these aged-hard-to-settle mares is that that communication goes wrong, probably due to poor uterine quality, and therefore the cl is destroyed, and the mare doesn't have enough progesterone to maintain the pregnancy... All theory of course... But it is my theory. Again, my goal is to get her in foal as cost effectively as possible. I don't mind spending the money to do things right, but I will guarantee that farm charges, ultrasounds, semen collections/shipments and infusions or flushes cost well more than a little "preventative regumate" once we have her in foal, we can test from there to see if it is needed, imo.
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 3197
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 04:36 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

On the contrary, if one is going to use Progestin supplementation, we always recommend that it should be started on day 3 post ovulation. Waiting until the pregnancy check means that one has gone through the biggest pregnancy loss risk period. You will find me recommending that elsewhere here on the board, as well as at our short courses.

You still however haven't answered "why?" :-)

My point is that if one doesn't have a definitive reason for using it, then it probably isn't needed. Granted in the majority of cases it is unlikely to cause harm (other than to the pocketbook!), but there are instances where it could cause an issue (fluid retention for example). One issue however that is of importance, and that is that the use of Regumate has been shown to suppress endogenous progestin secretion, so putting the mare on Regumate and then checking her progesterone levels will typically result in a level lower than what would have been seen were she not on Regumate (so people feel vindicated for the Regumate use!! :-)).

We use next to no Progestin supplementation therapy and have above-average pregnancy rates with a high percentage of "problem" mares. What we do use a lot of is oxytocin. There is an emerging school of thought that the issues with EED that progestin supplementation may assist with are brought about by the following scenario:
  1. The mare develops a low-level breeding-induced endometritis (BIE);
  2. The irritation to the uterus causes a low-level prostaglandin release - insufficient to cause lycing of the CL, but enough to reduce it's progesterone production efficiency;
  3. The mare is identified as "low progesterone" and supplemented with +/-$300 of Regumate.
Now consider what the use of +/- $3 of oxytocin can do:
  1. Mare is bred and the oxytocin protocol is followed;
  2. The uterus clears excess fluid and breeding-related inflammation and BIE is avoided;
  3. The CL functions happily in the absence of low levels of uterine-released prostaglandin;
  4. Progesterone levels when checked are "normal".
Estrogens are important for increasing blood flow to the uterus, and that in turn increases uterine tone when in the face of elevated Progesterone, and also immune function (particularly during estrus). I know it seems backwards, but it's true! Progesterone, while the dominant hormone (which is why you aren't going to cause diestrus relaxation of the cervix or receptivity to the stallion) can't over-ride all facets of the estrogenic action. As far as the effect of estrogens on FSH and LH during diestrus - remember that mares can and do develop diestrus follicles, and those will be secreting estrogen to some extent, so the system is geared up to expecting some estrogenic fluctuation during diestrus. Use early in estrus prior to ovulation may delay ovulation slightly.

Don't get me wrong overall... I recognize that many people use Regumate and claim good success using it, but I remain a skeptic personally. My reasoning is that I have not seen a definitive reason in most cases, and there are potentially alternative (cheaper) treatments in many instances. There are situations where the use of progestin supplementation is of great value - mares with incompetent cervices; indications of impending conceptus loss with uterine edema presence per ultrasound etc. all are areas where I would certainly reach for a progestin. There is some early research that suggests that some mares that are on progestin supplementation may have a larger diameter embryo at (I think it was - I can't remember for sure) 40 days, and it is possible that may be indicative of a benefit (or not - no proof one way or another <lol>). So yes, there are instances where it is of benefit, but they are far fewer than the number of instances where it is used... And I hate spending money when it's not necessary - even someone else's money!!! :-)
 

hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 5
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Monday, April 18, 2011 - 10:59 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jos, I think we are on the same page, with the exception of the "I haven't answered why" and I agree with you there, I haven't. You are right, it makes little sense to me to do a preg check and THEN put her on regumate, by then the pregnancy is lost if you're gonna lose it, imo... I was planning to wait till day 8 just to save some funds, but now believe I will put her on at day 3.

My thoughts with her are she has a significant history of not conceiving. I have no idea if they did day 14 preg checks, I sort of doubt it.
I get you feel "just in case" isn't a good reason, but I feel they have tried everything else, I do plan to ALSO use the oxytocin treatment, along with a post breeding infusion and the regumate @ day 3. But, if I catch her on the first cycle, it more than pays for that bottle of regumate :-) I have rarely used regumate past helping to short cycle a mare, and have never had to buy a whole bottle. I certainly am not putting all my old girls on regmuate "just in case". This is not the only problem mare I have, but she IS the worst one as far as I know.

Funny you mention regumate use if you see fluid and a embryo... I had this happen once, chose to follow vets advice with regumate and idk what else... Lost it anyway and held off how long it took to come back in heat. Looking back, I wish I'd have let it go and saved some $$...

Now here is the odd part. While my mares are not on lights, all but two are at least cycling... This mare is one of the mares not cycling yet. The vet cam and pulled a culture/cytology, and I had him ultrasound her at that time. She had no activity and was closed down everywhere, good news no fluid in uterus! Lol. If the other (young) mare that I had was already cycling this would really freak me out that she isn't yet.... But out of 9 mares (11 being teased) only two haven't shown a heat cycle. Do you think this is indicative of a problem? (The other mare has always teased well in the past, and no problems getting in foal, so I don't know what is up with her, maybe the weather has them both starting slow???
 

hidden lake stable
Neonate
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 6
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2011 - 04:02 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

well, she is on day 6-7 of her first heat (transitional) of the year. Her cytology and culture came back clean. So, we now wait for her to go out, then come back in. I will let you know how it goes. :-)

(I'm not counting on my luck this year. The first mare we bred this year just came back into heat today. We knew it was a "funny cycle" but it was still dissapointing.)
 

hidden lake stable
Weanling
Username: Hiddenlakestable

Post Number: 34
Registered: 04-2011
Posted on Wednesday, May 09, 2012 - 11:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

This mare did take, (as an update) and then slipped at day 25-26. we opted not to re-breed her and she is now a school horse. But we were tickled pink that she did get in foal!



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