Bovine Reproductive Services

Washington Veterinary Clinic offers artificial insemination services (A.I.) for cattle, herd synchronization, semen collection and evaluation along with bull breeding soundness examinations. The veterinarians also provide consultation on herd synchronization and will help design a breeding program to fit your operation.

We perform breeding soundness examinations on bulls either at your farm or at our clinic.  Check your bulls early every year to ensure your bulls are ready to breed your heifers and cows in case a replacement is needed for a failed or marginal breeder.  For all herd bulls that pass their examination, this is the perfect time to vaccinate, deworm, and apply fly control (when in season).  We can also trich test bulls at this time if warranted.  Our haul-in facility was built to handle the largest of bulls safely.

We offer any type of pregnancy diagnosis a producer may want, from rectal palpation to ultrasound to milk or blood testing. There are benefits and limitations of each method.

Ultrasound
At Washington Veterinary Clinic, Bovine Ultrasound imaging allows our veterinarians to diagnose pregnancy in cattle as soon as 30 days in gestation. Ultrasound can be used to find pregnancies earlier than with rectal palpation, thereby allowing open cows to be re-bred sooner. It also allows us to visualize the reproductive tract assessing the cervix, the entire uterus, and ovarian structures. Having this information can give the farmer great insight in how to proceed with their animal in the process of preparing her for pregnancy.

Embryo Transfer

We are set up to store frozen semen and embryos. We also specialize in embryo transfer work. Embryo flushing and transfer is a way to add desirable genetics into a herd. It is also a way to preserve genetics from a valuable cow in case she dies. This procedure is not fail-safe. Some cows respond better than others and produce a large number of high quality, transferable embryos. Others cows, under the same protocol, will produce a small number of transferable embryos. There are many variables involved in this procedure.  It is important to select recipient cows carefully. She should be free of disease and proven to be a good mother cow. Working with a veterinarian to select recipient cows will increase the success of an embryo transfer program.

We are set up to transfer fresh and frozen embryos as well as cryoprotect (freeze) embryos in lab. WVC offers both conventional (invivo) flushing and invitro ovum pickups.

Conventional (invivo) Embryo Transfer involves specific hormonal treatment of donor cows and heifers to cause multiple follicles to ovulate. The donors are bred using artificial insemination (A.I.) following this super-ovulation and estrus or standing heat. Approximately seven days after insemination, embryos are collected or “flushed” from the donor’s uterus and transferred fresh into synchronous recipients who will serve as surrogate mothers. Some donor collections result in zero viable embryos, while other donor collections may yield more than 20 viable embryos.  Once embryos are recovered, they are cleaned and graded (quality and stage of development). These recovered embryos can be directly transferred into a recipient cow or loaded into “straws” and frozen in liquid nitrogen to be transferred at a later date.

An Invitro fertilization collection,  or Ovum Pick Up, is the process of harvesting unfertilized oocytes, (unfertile eggs) directly from the ovaries of a donor cow or heifer. Recovered oocytes are fertilized, and transferred seven days after fertilization. They are cultured and grown in an incubator with controlled media, temperature and environment to mirror the cow’s uterus. Conventional, or sexed frozen semen may be used for fertilization.
Please call if you have any questions regarding these specialty embryo services.