Breeding Soundness Examination Of The Stud

Breeding soundness examination (BSE) of the stud may be performed to confirm fertility prior to purchase or sale, as part of an infertility investigation in breeding kennels or to check the suitability of the stud as a candidate for semen donation in assisted reproductive techniques (chilled and frozen semen).

The stud may significantly contribute to poor fertility in a breeding colony. Studs are often excluded as suspects of poor fertility. This is because breeders often erroneously assume that a stud “must” be fertile because he recently produced a large litter. One large litter is not an indicator of optimum fertility. Consistently impregnating 80% of bitches (large number) resulting in normal sized litters, is however an indicator of good fertility.

Purchasing a stud for any substantial amount without insisting on a reproductive soundness examination including semen evaluation is not a sound business principle. Many apparently “fertile” studs may indeed be sub-fertile. Mating bitches to sub-fertile males will result in poor conception rates. The semen evaluation should occur within a short interval from date of purchase of the stud. This is because the stud’s fertility may have changed recently due to any number of reasons. The breeding soundness examination may be limited or extensive. The minimum BSE should include examination of the testes, epididymides, spermatic cords, prostate, penis and prepuce, general health check and semen evaluation. More advanced examinations include culture of semen, examination of foreign cells in semen, brucellosis testing and ultrasound examination of the reproductive tract or even endocrine testing.