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Veterinary Assistant 2 -

Canine Reproduction

This course is the definitive guide to the principles of sound dog breeding. If you plan on breeding dogs, this course is for you. If you're a veterinary assistant or preparing to become one, this course will help you understand the essential facts so you can knowledgeably converse with clients on the complexities of canine reproduction.



Here’s a brief rundown on what you’ll learn in this course. It’s followed by a detailed syllabus.



Candidates for a breeding program need to be assessed not only for conformation, but also for health. They need a thorough reproductive examination and they should be screened for hereditary conditions such as hip dysplasia and eye diseases. Once selected, individual dogs are prepared for breeding with the help of proper nutrition, good parasite control, and appropriate vaccination programs.



By studying the hormonal cycle of the female dog in depth, the optimal time for breeding, for both natural mating and artificial insemination, can be identified. When a female fails to conceive, it is important to understand the potential causes. She may be suffering from infertility, but so may the male dog. You'll find out why.



Once the female has been confirmed pregnant, her needs must be met and preparations made for whelping (by knowing what is normal, when to intercede, and when to seek professional help). Postpartum complications in the female must be considered and close attention given to the needs of the puppies to ensure they reach weaning time in good health.



A new course starts every month. Check the home page for dates.



Syllabus



Week One
Wednesday - Lesson 01
In our first lesson, you'll learn how to select parents for your breeding program by using blood tests, radiographs, and physical examinations. I'll give you a primer on genetic disease and then finish by telling you all about management of the breeding pair, specifically vaccinations, deworming, and nutrition.
Friday - Lesson 02
How well do you know the female dog's anatomy? Besides learning the difference between the uterus and the oviducts, we'll look at the physical abnormalities that plague the female dog. You'll also find out how to diagnose infections and how those infections can impact fertility.



Week Two
Wednesday - Lesson 03
Today, we'll turn our attention to the male dog. He's a far more important contributor to the gene pool than the female. We'll delve into reproductive diseases that strike the male, such as cryptorchidism and Brucellosis, and conclude with a look at maladies such as testicular and prostatic disease that strike the geriatric male.
Friday - Lesson 04
When is the right time to breed a female dog? Though this is a simple question, the answer eludes many people. Today, we'll examine the reproductive (estrous) cycle of the female. You'll discover myriad ways to pinpoint the most productive time to breed.



Week Three
Wednesday - Lesson 05
In this lesson, we'll explore two methods of breeding—natural and artificial. You'll be able to tell when there are problems with natural mating. When we look at artificial insemination, you have to know how to collect and evaluate semen to ensure the male is fertile. We'll cover how to do this as well as techniques for insemination.
Friday - Lesson 06
By now, the female has been bred and you expect a pregnancy. Unfortunately, this doesn't happen every time. In today's lesson, we'll focus on reasons for infertility in the female, such as pyometra and cystic endometrial hyperplasia.



Week Four
Wednesday - Lesson 07
We'll now turn our attention to the hormonal fluctuations that influence fertility. We'll examine silent heats, persistent estrus, and a variety of other abnormalities. We'll even go over a few problems with sexual behavior.
Friday - Lesson 08
In this lesson, we'll review some of the important reasons for male infertility. You'll begin by finding out why the male may not want to mate, such as having arthritis in his spine. Next, we'll look at semen production and the negative effects of such things as prostate infections. We'll conclude the lesson with a review of a male reproductive examination.



Week Five
Wednesday - Lesson 09
Assuming everything has gone right, you now have a pregnant dog and you have to take care of her. What should she be fed? Should she be vaccinated? What diseases could strike her during this time? We'll look at two specific examples you need to watch for—diabetes and pregnancy toxemia.
Friday - Lesson 10
Finally, it's puppy time! In today's lesson, you'll learn what to expect during whelping. You'll know what's normal and when to suspect complications. Of course, our lesson wouldn't be complete without examining how to solve a whelping problem. You'll learn what you can do and how a caesarean is done.

Week Six
Wednesday - Lesson 11
Many people breathe a sigh of relief once the puppies are born, but for some dogs, this is when the problems really begin. Today's topic is postpartum disease. These diseases include mastitis, metritis, and hypocalcemia—a condition where the blood calcium drops to dangerous levels.
Friday - Lesson 12
This final lesson is all about puppies. We'll look at the importance of the first drink of milk. You'll find out how to evaluate if they're getting enough food, and what to do if they aren't. We'll also look at how to keep them warm so they aren't chilled. And we'll conclude this lesson and the course with an itinerary that shows you what to do for the first six months of a puppy's life.