The goal of managed breeding is to achieve the best conception rate and litter size with the least cost.
Success depends on:
- Semen quality
- Accurate timing
- Semen getting into the right spot
If you want pups and you have had difficulty getting your bitch pregnant then you need to do things differently next time around.
The most costly part of breeding is losing a litter. If you have no pups from one season you can’t replace that season.
To get semen to the right spot can be very difficult. The vagina of a bitch is long (10-14cm in a 11kg bitch, 29cm in a 35kg bitch). The cervix cannot be palpated. Most inseminations only go into the vagina like natural matings so have only a 50-70% success rate.
INTRA UTERINE INSEMINATION RESULTS IN HIGHER CONCEPTION RATES AND INCREASED LITTER SIZE.
There are two ways of getting semen into the uterus:
- Surgically – semen is injected through the uterine wall during a laparotomy; the bitch is anaesthetised.
- Transcervical Insemination – the cervix is visualised through a rigid endoscope which is passed into the vagina. A catheter is passed through the cervix and semen is deposited into the uterus.
Advantages of transcervical insemination:
- No anaesthetic required
- The bitches stand for the procedure and most (as long as they are in oestrus) tolerate it very well
- The use of the endoscope means it is not ‘blind’; the vet can see the cervix, identify the dorsal median fold and tubercle and fornix (blind pocket). The opening of the cervix is small and is visually directed downward but with the endoscope a catheter can be passed through it
- There is minimal trauma to the reproductive tract
- Multiple inseminations can be performed in any heat cycle
- Only a small amount of semen is required (1-2ml)
- Conception rates with this technique have been reported between 80-100%
There are limitations:
- Not every bitch can be scoped
- It is important that the bitch is in oestrus
- It is best if progesterone levels are done to check the timing of ovulation in relation to insemination
- The semen has to be fertile
If you want more successful breedings there are techniques available for success:
- Swab your bitch as soon as she comes on heat (infection in vagina kills sperm and pups)
- Have a progesterone test before day 5
- Repeat progesterone tests as advised by the vet – usually every 2-3 days
- If your stud dug has not been used for a while – get his semen tested. Don’t be disappointed if low quality. Retest before you need him or find another dog
- Make sure semen quality is adequate whether using fresh or frozen semen
- Inseminate at appropriate time
- Transcervical insemination or surgical insemination
- Repeat transcervical insemination 2 days later (depending on bitch)
Four major reasons for missed conception are:
- Improper timing of breeding
- Poor semen quality
- Semen not getting to right spot
A natural mating is not the most effective way to breed. Statistics prove that natural matings have a much lower conception rate compared to A.I.
|Natural matings||61.2% (conception rate)|
|A.I. fresh semen||71.8% (conception rate)|
|A.I. frozen semen||81.7% (conception rate|
|(Statistics from NGA 2002)|
A.I. frozen semen 95%
(with surgical implantation or transcervical insemination)
Some people will prefer to do things naturally – but it is possible to get much better success with A.I.
There are many benefits to A.I. including:
- The ability to know if the semen is of good quality before the A.I
- The ability to use a different stud dog if the semen quality is poor
- Avoids non acceptance of female by male and vice versa
- Best way to breed a maiden bitch
- Saves time and avoids injuries of holding dog and bitch during tie
- Positive control of reproductive diseases
- The ability to breed without the stud dog being present with the use of fresh (kooled) or frozen semen
- The ability to breed more often
For pregnancy to occur the semen needs to get to the right spot.
- The vagina of a bitch is long, 10-14cm in an 11kg bitch. (To reach the cervix the equipment needs to be about 30cm long for a large breed, eg Labrador)
- In natural mating semen is deposited into the vaginal lumen
- In a standard artificial insemination, the vet aims to deposit the semen cranial to the caudal tubercle.
- In transcervical catheterisation semen is deposited through the cervical into the uterus
- In surgical insemination the bitch is under anaesthetic, the semen is deposited into the fallopian tubes
There are so many advantages of A.I. that better informed breeders will prefer to breed this way.
Nearly all racing greyhounds are bred this way.
We now sell an “At home A.I. kit” for just $63.00 including postage