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Reproductive Counseling and Services

Factors to Consider before breeding your dog:

  • Will your dog contribute excellent health, temperament, working ability or conformity to the breed standard? 
  • Do you understand that spaying and neutering will prevent some health problems that you risk by keeping your dog intact? 
  • Are you aware of any and all health and temperament problems in your dog's pedigree? 
  • Are you willing to search for the best dog to breed your dog to, even if you have to travel out of state? 
  • Do you have carefully screened buyers and deposits for all the puppies you may produce? 
  • Do you have money set aside in case the dam or puppies need emergency care? 
  • Can you or another responsible adult be present 24 hours a day for the first 3 weeks in case hand feeding is needed? 
  • Do you know what to prepare and expect for canine pregnancy, whelping and puppy rearing?
  • Are you willing to keep and properly socialize all the puppies until good homes are found? 
  • Are you willing to take back any or all puppies any time in their lives that they may no longer be wanted? 
  • Are you willing to serve as a lifetime resource for the buyers of your puppies?

The staff of the Animal Hospital of Sun Prairie feel that it is extremely important for you to know the facts so that you can make informed decisions before breeding your pet. 

Reproductive services available at the Animal Hospital of Sun Prairie include:

Males and Females: Prebreeding Checklist

Prebreeding Physical Exam - to check for any health problems, physical abnormalities, and any other conditions that may affect breeding, pregnancy or the puppies.

Update all vaccinations (especially Rabies and Distemper) and test for heartworm disease, if appropriate.

Fecal Exam - to check for intestinal parasites and deworm if necessary

Test for Brucellosis - This is an infectious disease which is a major cause of abortion and infertility in dogs.

Radiographs (x-rays) for Dysplasia - Dogs need to be over 2 years of age for this. Radiographs are sent to the Orthopedic Foundation of Animals (OFA) and certified as free from hip dysplasia (in certain breeds, the elbows should be examined and certified as well).

CERF Exam for Eye disease - The Canine Eye Registration Foundation registers eyes as being free from heritable disorders after the eyes are examined by a veterinary ophthalmologist. We do not offer this service, but will be happy to refer you to a veterinary ophthalmologist.

Medical Workup (blood and urine tests to screen for medical disorders) - especially important if the pet is over 5 years of age or has had a history of any reproductive or medical problems.

Nutritional program - feed a high quality diet (Puppy/Kitten or Growth Formula for a pregnant or nursing female) and make sure the pet is at an appropriate weight before breeding.


Vaginal Cytology/Progesterone Assays during heat cycle - These tests allow breeding to be timed precisely and are particularly useful if the dam will be sent away for breeding, if she has had previous conception problems or if it is necessary to know the exact due date.

Ultrasound Exam - This is a non-invasive exam to try to confirm pregnancy, usually done 25-30 days post breeding.

Abdominal Radiographs - Done later in pregnancy.  A radiograph (x-ray) will determine litter size and individual puppy size. This is important to help us anticipate problems and to determine how many puppies to expect.

Whelping/Queening procedures - Normal birth and recognition of potential complications should be discussed with your Veterinarian.


Semen Evaluation (Dogs - test for quantity and quality of semen) - this is especially important if there have been fertility problems in the past.

The Animal Hospital of Sun Prairie is also equipped to perform both surgical and vaginal artificial insemination and semen collection.  Please contact us to determine what is best for your particular situation.