Stallion Health: Preventing the Spread of Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Last Updated on April 15, 2022 by Allison Price

It’s now easier than ever to breed the best quality stallion genes into your breeding program using live cover or artificial insemination. Each can spread venereal and sexually transmitted diseases.

Klebsiella pneumoniae

Overzealous cleaning can spread Klebsiella bacteria. Instead of using water and mild soap, disinfectant can be used to clean the stallion’s genitalia. This will allow the Klebsiella bacteria, which is non-harmful, to spread during live cover.

The bacteria can also be transmitted to the mare by artificial insemination. It poses a serious problem if the bacteria ascends to the stallion’s internal organs and causes lifelong shedding. Endometritis is the most common outcome of Klebsiella pneumoniae. This can be treated with antibiotics.

The prognosis is generally good for mares, but the uterus may need daily treatments for three to 5 days. This could lead to one or two missed breeding cycles. A gentle pre-breeding wash is recommended to help the condition. This will not disrupt the stallion’s normal flora.

Equine coital exanthema

This disease, also known as equine venereal Balanitis in Stallions, is caused by the equine herpesvirus type 3 (EHV-3), and can be passed on to the mare under live cover. Transmission can also happen via contaminated materials or instruments such as gloves.

Stallion Health

Equine coital Exanthema can cause circular nodules to form around the vaginal area in a mare that has been exposed for four to eight days. These lesions may also develop on the stallion’s reproductive organs and could make it difficult for him to breed during the ulcerative stage.

This condition can be managed with antibiotics and rest from breeding activity in three weeks. Secondary bacterial infections caused by Streptococcus species are more common. The ulcers can eventually enlarge, leading to mucopurulent discharge.

Prevention of infection

It is best to have your stallion swabbed before any breeding season begins in order to avoid sexually transmitted diseases. This will allow your stallion’s peak performance for the breeding season, and ensures that he doesn’t infect mares.

Live coverage for your stallion can be allowed if you insist that mares have a clean test result before your policy will cover. This reduces the chance of your stallion contracting an STD from infected mares. Klebsiella can be carried by maiden mares, and it can also affect his fertility.

Allison Price
Allison Price

I’m Allison, born and raised in San Diego California, the earliest memory I have with horses was at my grandfather’s farm. I used to sit at the stable as a kid and hang out with my Papa while he was training the horses. When I was invited to watch a horse riding competition, I got so fascinated with riding!