Gina headed off to the vet shortly after the lab results came in for another round uterine treatments to clear up the bacterial infection lingering in her lady parts. The vet did an ultrasound before starting the treatments to determine where she was in her reproductive cycle; her largest follicle and uterine edema were both sort of mid-sized, so my vet thought Gina had just ovulated or was about to do so. The vet ultrasounded again before the last treatment and concluded that Gina had ovulated just before I’d brought her in. While it would have been nice to be able to inseminate immediately, my vet assured me that it would be easy to manipulate Gina’s cycle now that we knew exactly where she was in it.
Before I took Gina home, I was able to watch the vet perform the Caslick procedure. It was way more low-key than I thought it would be! First, a local anesthetic was injected in each side of the vulva. Then, a very thin strip of skin was removed from each side. Gina didn’t twitch an ear during this part of the procedure, and there was far less bleeding than I thought there would be. (My vet likened it to a human skinning their knee.) Finally, the two sides of the vulva were sutured together. I asked the vet if there was anything I needed to do once I got home; she said there was absolutely nothing I needed to do, and informed me that it was a very exercise-friendly procedure. (It’s apparently very common in race horses.)
I was sent home with a syringe of Lutalyce, a drug that’s commonly used to bring mares into heat. My vet gave me instructions to administer the Lutalyce in three days via intramuscular injection. She also warned me that it may have side effects for Gina that included sweating and abdominal cramping; she advised me not to worry- if Gina exhibited these symptoms, they would pass quickly and Gina would be none the worse for wear. I gave Gina the Lutalyce as prescribed. She didn’t appear to have any sort of reaction (or maybe she’s just super stoic).
I took Gina back to the vet last Friday to for another ultrasound; Gina’s follicle was around 45 mm in diameter, and the uterine edema was plentiful. My vet informed me that she’d inseminate Gina on Saturday and check her on Sunday to make sure she’d ovulated. I gave my vet the contact information from the stallion owner; she contacted them and about an hour later, I was emailed a shipping notification for the semen! I appreciate that the stallion owner, Avalon Equine, has been so easy to work with- they collect every day and will ship the same day if they’re notified by 10 AM. They’ve also answered all of my emails promptly and completely, which is awesome, because I really hate talking on the phone.
I received a call from the vet yesterday that Gina had been a model patient and had been bred on Saturday and ovulated as predicted on Sunday. I picked her up and took her home; she’ll go back in 16 days for a pregnancy check. Keep your fingers crossed that everything looks good! If she’s pregnant, the due date will be May 26, 2017- a great time of year to be born!