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AS 375: Equine Reproductive Management - 2016

An Introductory Course in Equine Management for Spring 2016

Animal Science, Dairy Science, Biology and Pre-Vet Students and others interested in a hands-on biology course (2 credits) managing horses to maximize reproductive efficiency.

Are you interested in horses, need some large animal experience for Vet School, want a chance to work hands-on with a large domestic species, or need 2 more credits in the spring semester, then consider Equine Reproductive Management. This is a class that focuses on how you need to manage horses to maximize reproductive efficiency. Learn how to collect semen from a stallion, process that semen for artificial insemination, breed mares with artificial insemination using semen you collected, understand the detection of pregnancy, management of the pregnant mare, participate in foaling (only video in 2015, 2016) and the management of the newborn foal (only discussed 2015, 2016). Lectures consist of an on-line text written by the instructor. In class time is for discussion and actual labs working with the horses. We will utilize up to 6 mares and 2 stallion owned by the Department of Animal Sciences for the class. There are no perquisites for this class but AS434 - Reproductive Physiology is suggested. We particularly encourage students with no horse experience to consider this course.


Lecture: There is weekly on line material that is to be completed prior to class. The class meets in room AS128 Animal Science from 3:00 - 5:00 PM on Monday. Each week, there will be a discussion, classroom lab or work in the barn with horses. For some labs, we will divide the class in half (10 per group) and only 1 of the groups will meet in a week. This is due to safety issues related to working with the horses and Dr. Parrish can not focus on what all 20 students are doing at the same time. In addition, we do not have space or sufficient horses for everyone to do something each week. Required postings in Learn@UW may occur at anytime during the class.

Lab: This occurs during the lecture period listed above. There will be additional times you need to come in during the week to do some activity with the horses. For example, there will be a requirement to estrus check the mares at the beginning of the semester. After mid March, a group of up to 4 students will be assigned a mare that you need to get pregnant before the end of class. For the estrus detection and breeding requirment, all work is outside of the class period.

Instructor: Dr John Parrish
  752 Animal Sciences Bldg.
  Department of Animal Sciences
  University of Wisconsin-Madison

Text: The class web site.

Objective: The principal objectives of the course are to provide students with strategies to optimize reproductive efficiency in the mare and stallion. A combination of web delivered lectures and hands-on laboratories will be utilized to cover breeding management of the mare and stallion, semen collection and evaluation, artificial insemination, pregnancy detection, care of the pregnant mare, parturition, care of the new born foal and infectious diseases affecting reproductive efficiency. The secondary objective of the course is to provide students with a hands-on experience with equine management. This will be accomplished through the laboratories.

Lab Fee: The Department of Animal Science charges a laboratory fee of $50 to purchase the equipment and supplies needed to present this class. Fees are used only to support this class. Please note however that there is no text to be purchased for the class.

Potential Danger and Injury: Horses by their nature and size can be dangerous to humans. In particular we will be working with stallions in a breeding situation, performing breeding soundess exams on both stallions and mares, inseminating mares and you will be giving injections to mares. In any of these activities you can be kicked, bitten or pushed over by a horse. The instructor and TA(s) however will be present at dangerous times to make sure you are safely working with the horses. You will also be trained in safe handling of horses for the activities we are performing. However, if you become injured, medical expenses are the responsibility of the student via insurance that you must carry as a UW student.

Schedule: See the Lecture and Lab headings at the top of the page.

Grading: The grade structure of the class will be determined on the basis of 2 exams (exam 1 before spring break, exam 2 at the end of class), the breeding experience, a self reflecton on the breeding experience, and participation.

Exam I
Exam II
Breeding Experience 50
Self Reflection 20
Participation 100
Total Points

Grading structure will be based on the % of total possible points in the class and the final grade assigned as follows:

A > 90%

AB > 85%

B > 80%

BC > 70%

C > 60%

D > 50%