Artificial Insemination (AI)

Im and Ex

Semen can be moved either Im(chilled) or Ex(frozen).

Chilled movement of semen has to be timed with the bitch’s ovulation as the life time of the cooled semen is about three days. This is done through Progesterone testing.

Import of semen for AI of a female resident in the UK requires a pet passport from the stud dog abroad. The semen can then ‘travel on the passport’. Shipment from most countries in Europe takes 24h. You do require an import licence from DEFRA.

Export of chilled dog semen is wide spread and very successful. Exports to Europe, USA and Canada will take 24-48h and are no problem. For Sweden the stud dog requires some blood tests that can be done at the beginning of the bitch’s season and travel with the shipment.

Advantages Of Chilled Semen:
Pregnancy rates are very similar to natural matings as the semen is not stressed during cooling. Transport costs are low due to the small package (0.5ml thermos flask and no return of shipper).

Disadvantages Of Chilled Semen:
Timing is important and all three parties (bitch owner, stud dog owner and vet) have to be available. Normally only one breeding (which may include two AIs) are possible.

Frozen movement of semen can be planned well ahead and several breedings can be moved and stored. Long term storage of semen is possible. Frozen semen enables the breeder to use a dog from anywhere in the world at any time in the future, but also means increased costs and detailed planning.

Import of semen to the UK is either done on a pet passport or depending on the country of import on a special DEFRA licence.

Export of frozen semen is possible to most parts of the world, but needs some time to be prepared and shipped. Costs are higher a special shipper keeping the temperature at -200o C has to be used and returned to the clinic.

Advantages Of Frozen Semen:
Semen can be moved at any time prior to mating and stored for any length of time. Several matings can be moved to and kept in the semen bank.

Disadvantages Of Frozen Semen:
Pregnancy rates are lower as freezing will alter the viability of semen. Timing of the AI has to be very precise and several Progesterone tests will be needed to determine the right day.

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Since Autumn 2006 The Kennel Club has routinely accepted for registration puppies whelped from a bitch bred by artificial insemination provided the breeding has conformed to these criteria –

  • At the time of insemination the sire must not be alive and resident in the United Kingdom, (unless he is an Irish Wolfhound over the age of 8 ½)
  • The sire must have previously sired a registered litter by natural mating
  • The insemination must not be surgical (otherwise registration of the litter is at the discretion of the Kennel Club)
  • If bitch herself was whelped from a litter bred by the artificial insemination of a maiden bitch, then she must have previously produced a registered litter to a natural mating

In all other cases breeders are advised to seek the permission of the Kennel Club before their bitch is inseminated.

We advise that you confirm the current accuracy of the above by consulting the Kennel Club Website for the most up to date information (