Breeding Services for Mares
MREC’s equine breeding program is well known for its successful mare pregnancy rate and the resulting delivery of healthy foals. The hospital offers a variety of horse breeding and reproductive services, such as:
- Pre-Breeding Examinations
- Artificial Insemination- both fresh and frozen semen
- Pregnant Mare Well Care Program
We can perform artificial insemination with fresh semen either at the farm or at the hospital. The majority of our mares are bred at the hospital, this is simply a function of efficiency. It is often difficult with busy schedules to coordinate and arrange farm calls with the arrival of shipped fresh semen, however talk to your doctor about what the best plan for your mare would be. All mares bred with frozen semen will be admitted to the hospital for breeding. This is not performed on the farm. The reason for this is that these mares often have to be ultrasounded every six hours around the clock due to critical timing when using frozen semen.
Intro to Breeding
As an introduction, there are a few basics in equine reproduction of which you should have at least a general understanding. The mare’s cycle is 21 days in length. She will generally be in heat for 5-7 days and out of heat for the following two plus weeks. Ovulation, the actual release of the ovum (egg), occurs approximately 24 hours before the end of visible heat.
Timing is very important in breeding, and the closer insemination occurs prior to ovulation the better the odds of conceiving and becoming pregnant. A mare can be bred after she ovulates, however, her fertility drops hourly, and in general breeding is of little value if is performed more than six hours post ovulation.