I'm having lots of fun with my new horse. We decided to call him Zed, so he could have a somewhat Canadian connection.
Since he is an "off the track" thoroughbred, he doesn't have very good brakes or steering. Even though he is a hunter/jumper prospect we are riding him in a western saddle right now as part of his re-training process.
He is a really, really sweet horse and wants to be a team player.
Darbi has slept pretty much straight through since coming home from her surgical insemination yesterday. She seems only slightly uncomfortable and isn't fussing at all with the stitches on her belly.
She ate some breakfast this morning and is now sleeping on the couch.
The vet told me that she had "the uterus of a 3 year old dog". I told Darbi this, but she wasn't impressed nor flattered.
Interestingly, a dog's uterus is damaged after each heat cycle, whether a dog is bred or not. The uterus is actually MORE damaged with each cycle that she is not bred. So, the more cycles, the more wear and tear. Since Darbi only cycles about once a year (as opposed to twice a year in some females), her uterus looks like a dog half her age. The vet was excited about this. This is why we opted to do a surgical A.I. and not a transcervical (pipette through her hoo-ha). A surgical allows the vet to physically examine the uterus and deal with any cysts he may run across.
We've done everything right. The timing was dead on, the semen was of a very good quality and Darbi did her part by ovulating and having a very pretty uterus.
Darbi is on about a week to ten days of bed rest now, and then she can ease back into training. It is a proven fact that bitches in good condition have an easier time whelping puppies than bitches left idle and overweight. The puppies also do better with stimulation while in mom's womb and are more easily whelped when not overweight themselves. So, Darbi will be trained right up to when she tells us she can't. This is usually about 2 weeks before whelping. Then, she will go on daily long walks for exercise until her whelping day. I have done this with every litter and so far so good...4 litters and 4 very, very easy whelpings. (Knock on wood of course, as anything can happen even if everything is done "right")
There is also a genetic factor that I have no control over. Luckily, Darbi's mom and grandmom were easy whelpers, so I have the genetics on my side as well.
It looks like Darbi ovulated yesterday according to her progesterones.
We're taking her in for one last progesterone test today to be sure.
If she did ovulate yesterday, then she will be bred on Thursday. It takes two days for the eggs to move down and then an additional 24 hours for them to mature after ovulation. Since frozen semen lives only about 12 hours after implantation, it is important that we get our timing right.
I'm sure poor Darbi feels like a pin cushion right now.