Unfortunately stallions just like all horses suffer accidents and injuries which can be catastrophic and require immediate euthanasia. This unfortunately occurred to one of our clients horses last week but thanks to their quick thinking we were able to freeze his epididymal sperm and preserve some of his genetics.
Freezing epididymal semen is not the preferred method for semen freezing for a couple of reasons- no test freezing is performed so quality cannot be guaranteed, the is a finite amount that is obtained and spermatozoa also undergo maturation as they pass through the epididymis however when the situation arises freezing epididymal is a very good option.
Freezing epididymal sperm can also be performed at the time of castration for colts/stallions that you just want to preserve a small amount of genetics. Normally 5-20 breeding doses are obtained using this method just depending on the stallion, time of year and if he is breeding at the time.
If this unfortunate situation occurs there are a few things that are important to do- relieve the colt/stallions suffering as soon as possible, contact us to allow us to be prepared, remove the testicles leaving as much of the epididymis attached as possible, ideally ligate the ductus deferens or clamp off, place them in a clean plastic snap lock bag and transport them to us immediately. If transport is longer than an hour cool the testicles in an esky with ice bricks. If you wish to freeze a colt/stallion at the time of castration please let us know at the time of booking.
The reports vary on the success of epididymal sperm but is similar to that of conventional frozen semen. Sometimes seminal plasma can be added to it enhance its fertility. If you have any questions regarding this procedure please feel free to contact us.