Questions to ask regarding fertility:
- Has the stallion produced offspring with shipped cooled semen?
- The answer should be yes
- What is his per cycle conception rate with cooled semen?
- Industry standard is at least 60%
- What is his per season conception rate with cooled semen?
- Should be over 90%
- Is the semen evaluated prior to shipment?
- Yes, at least concentration and motility are needed
- In addition, a full evaluation of the semen (volume, concentration, motility and morphology) should be done at least annually
- What dose of semen is sent?
- Industry standard is to SEND 1 billion (1×10^9) progressively motile sperm, assuming half will die in transit allowing for insemination with 500 x 10^6 sperm
- Some stallions will concentrate and ship smaller doses of semen (as low as 100 million sperm TOTAL). This is a viable option but it must be processed properly after collection, may need to be shipped same day, and requires deep horn insemination
- How long is the semen viable?
- It should be viable at least 24 hours, ideally 48 hours plus
- Has the stallion been tested for sexually transmitted diseases and / or any genetic diseases known to be in the respective breed?
- Many farms will perform a bacterial culture on a stallion at the beginning of the breeding season to ensure no pathogenic bacteria are present.
- If a stallion is also breeding live cover, periodic bacterial cultures should be taken to ensure there is no presence of a sexually transmitted disease
- Genetic testing is available for many breeds (for example HYPP in Quarter Horses, Warmblood Fragile Foal syndrome in Warmbloods, and SCID in Arabians)
**These questions apply to general reproductive health and fertility, not general soundness, speed, conformation, quality of cross with a mare, etc.**