At Equine-Reproduction.com we use a variety of artificial vaginas (“AV’s”), but the one that we particularly favour and use the most is the INRA (French model) AV from IMV. We have used this AV to collect all sizes of stallions from full-sized warmblood stallions to Welsh ponies! We have modified the setup slightly from that which has been suggested by others, and find that these modifications make the AV even more practical and easy to use.
Here is the entire process in detail.
|The latex liner can be shortened, allowing creation of the latex bands used later.||The latex liner is fed through the inside of the AV.||The end of the latex liner is then folded back over the AV casing…||… levelled all around…||… and secured in place with a latex band twisted around tightly(typically twice).|
|The same thing is done to the other end…||… making sure there are no twists in the liner…||… pulling it tight and levelling it…||… and securing it with a latex band, again tightly.|
|We also secure each end of the latex with Duct tape.||Place the latex hood over the end of the AV. Start with it snugged up tight, and loosen to suit the individual stallion – but most like it snugged up.|
|Place a disposable bottle liner in a bottle. A gel filter can be placed in the bottle and folded back over the top of the bottle.|
|Twist the other end of the disposable liner tightly and feed it through the end of the latex hood…||Feed the disposable liner all the way through the AV and fold it back over the outside of the AV.||Although a tight fit, it is still advisable to secure the disposable liner with a latex band – although not as tight as the ones securing the latex liner.|
|Reverse a clean rectal sleeve over your hand, thereby providing a clean surface to the outside.||Pour about a tablespoon of gel onto the palm of your sleeve-protected hand…||… lubricate the inside of the AV…||… remove your hand from the sleeve and reverse it over the end of the AV to prevent accidental water or dirt access.|
|The AV is filled with hot water to give a final stabilized inside temperature between 45° and 54°Celsius (113° and 130°F). The actual desired temperature will be stallion-dependent. You will notice that we have an attachment on the hose from the sink that allows us to fill the AV more easily. We have removed the sprayer unit from the end of the hose and attached a smaller nozzle that will fit into the opening of the AV. We have also placed an on/off valve in the hose, which again makes it easier. You should release extra water to make the AV tight enough to provide stimulation for the stallion, but no too tight. Water is removed by placing the arm into the AV (inside the rectal sleeve), forcing the desired amount of water out. Replace the cap on the AV before removing your arm.|
|In cold weather we will put a warmed (37°C/99°F) cover over the baby bottle.||You are ready to collect!|
© Equine-Reproduction.com and Guy Delhomme, IMV Technologies