1. A.I stands for artificial insemination, this is the technique of collecting from the male and artificially inseminating the female by directly placing the semen inside the vagina (trans-vaginal). Semen placed through the cervix (trans-cervical) should only carried-out by a vet with the use of an endoscope.
2. The male is collected by imitating that he is locked onto a female which causes a tie, is not the equivalent of human foreplay and shouldn’t be collected in such a way!
3. A.I is not more successful than a natural mating if the female hasn’t been ovulation tested. It doesn't matter how the semen ‘arrives’ if the eggs aren’t mature for conception. The experience can be significantly less stressful for all involved (and quicker!). If ovulation has been detected through testing, A.I generally increases the chances of conception, as less of the sample is ‘lost’ in transition making it more efficient.
4. Females can react differently when it comes to mating, particularly if a nervous maiden or dominant bitch. A.I reduces the stress of the actual act of the mating and having a male on their back. Removing such anxieties and frustrations, reduces stress levels and supports improved conception rates.
5. A.I is ideal for nervous or injured males. Some stud dogs may no longer able to mount due to age or acquired injuries to back or shoulders plus any issues with significant size differences. A.I is an ideal alternative. The same applies for a nervous or extremely ‘polite’ male, particularly if they live with the female needing to be covered. They're not always comfortable or confident enough to insist on a mating or a sufficient tie, alternatives such as A.I relieves this pressure.
6. The mating pair should remain separated until the point of the A.I is required, leaving the couple together can result in him becoming stressed, his collection being unnecessary lost or general upset between the mating pair. The separation ensures the stud remains super keen, is easier to collect and typically produces a better sample.
7. The Kennel Club now approve trans-vaginal artificial insemination, full details is listed on their website. It should no longer frowned upon with any pedigree breed.
8. The male collection can be assessed with a microscope before insemination. Checking for the overall semene quality by looking at the volume produced, concentration, morphology, motility and abnormality rate to confirm is the sample is of very good, good, poor or very poor quality. The older the dog the more abnormalities typically present or the lack of prostate fluid. This can be improved with the use of various semen ‘performance’ extenders (solutions).
9. Male collections can be split to cover more than one mating or more than one bitch, providing more flexibility for potential mating clashes or to help cover the optimal window of fertility.
10. The male collection can be chilled and shipped worldwide, most semen extenders last between 3 to 5 days, with some now up to 10 days giving greater options. Shipping chilled can often be cheaper and quicker than traveling with a female. A trained person will be required to reheat the semen, analyse and inseminate when necessary.