Elizabeth F. Martinsen, DVM, DACT
Over the last two decades, embryo transfer has grown in acceptance and is now performed in many horse breeds. The majority of embryo transfers in the United States each year are performed on Arabian and Quarter horses. The American Quarter Horse Association allows multiple foal registrations per year, and the high-dollar Quarter horses are boosting the embryo transfer industry. The embryo transfer technique has not undergone significant innovations for the past few years, but there has been an increasing trend to have embryos shipped to a reproductive facility that manages a large recipient herd. This trend has been supported by encouraging pregnancy rates following embryo transfers from shipped embryos.
Embryo transfer allows the production of foals from valuable mares that are not capable of carrying a foal to term.