Breeding Soundness Exams

Successful horse breeding depends on the reproductive health of both the mares and stallions, but mostly on the stallions since they are expected to service various females. A breeding soundness exam (BSE) is a relatively quick and economically feasible fertility exam performed on the mare and stallion by a veterinarian. The aim is to ensure the animal is healthy enough to reproduce the best breed of colts and fillies. Our team at Mediapolis Veterinary Clinic provides breeding soundness exams for horse owners in and around Mediapolis, IA.

What Is Involved?

The components of a BSE are:

  • Taking a reproductive history
  • A physical exam
  • Semen and ovary evaluations to check for normalcy in the cells
  • Rectal examinations on mares
  • Vaginal examinations
  • Uterine culture and cytology

The Procedure for a Breeding Soundness Exam

The BSE takes around 20-30 minutes, depending on the resources available. This typical procedure includes:

  • Horse nutritional status examination through physical tests.
  • Finding structural and disease conditions that affect the feet, such as hoof abnormalities. This may affect the horse’s performance during breeding.
  • Evaluating eyesight and teeth.
  • Examination of the internal reproductive system to ensure normalcy.
  • Checking for normalcy in the external reproductive system.
  • Microscopic evaluation of the semen and physical examination of the ovaries.

Why Breeding Soundness Exams Are Important

  • The fertility of horses can vary between mating seasons. Mares are not always on oestrus. This means you have to get it right before the breeding season is over. Servicing mares with an infertile or unsatisfactory stallion may lead to delayed pregnancies, the spread of sexually transmitted diseases such as contagious equine metritis and equine coital exanthema, open mares, or weaker breeds of horses.
  • Foals for replacement animals and revenue sources are expected whenever there is a breeding season. Many farmers invest heavily in breeding soundness exams since they rely heavily on horse operations as their livelihood. Poor breeding can lead to heavy losses of revenue.
  • The process is economical and financially viable. Consider one BSE on a stallion that will service 30 mares; hence, the investment return is high.

Contact Us for Breeding Soundness Examinations in Mediapolis, IA

Breeding soundness examinations are important to the success of a breeding season. Dr. Wendy Thomas and Dr. Seth Hartter at Mediapolis Veterinary Clinic offer farm calls for exams and other veterinary services. If you have any questions about breeding soundness exams or would like to schedule a farm call with one of our veterinarians, call us today at (319) 394-3108.