Tips & Tricks to Optimize Breeding Success in Cats : Q&A from our last webinar !

We had yesterday our first webinar series of the year, focusing on feline reproduction ! And it ended being a great interactive & online conversation with passionate cat breeders from all over the world ! I can tell you I really enjoyed it a lot ! You guys were really active on the chat, and we got lots of questions ! As promised, you will find our our written answers below. And if you have more, don't hesitate to ask them on this forum ! 

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Can using the Qtip method to induce ovulation allow artificial insemination, thereby giving breeders access to male genetics that might otherwise be unavailable to geographical or other constraints?

 

The Q-tip will allow to induce ovulation in the queen. For artificial insemination in cats to be successful, there are still many other factors to consider (semen collection & semen quality, insemination technique, timing of the insemination…). It is still very complex, but the results I showed you during the webinar are definitely promising !

 

I totally agree with you that when artificial insemination will become available to cat breeders, it will definitely open new horizons in terms of genetic selection. That’s a certainty ! 

How soon does a queen stop calling once properly bred?

 

The queen usually calls for about a week, and it is important to know that breeding will not make her stop calling sooner !

Do you recommend we spay our breeding queens when their reproductive career is over?

 

Yes.

Many breeders suggest caging expectant queens a week or two prior to delivery to prevent jumping and such. What is veterinary opinion on this ?

 

I think what matters the most is that you should not stress the queen out, because stress can have terrible consequences on gestation and parturition.

 

I understand that accidents can always happen, however it is always important to weigh the pros and cons. The thing in cats to prevent is definitely stress.

What type of companion is best for housing with a stud cat--neutered male or spayed female?

 

I must admit I am not sure if there would be any difference. I think you need to find a cat the male gets along well with. That is what matter the most.

If you have more than one stud should they be housed in such a way that they cannot see each other or does it matter?

 

My opinion would be they should not see each other. There is usually competition between intact males and seeing their “rival” right in front of them could potentially stress some of them out.

Obviously all cats are different and might not react the same way, but again, decreasing all the potential sources of stress is essential in catteries.  

Is there a chemical way to bring her into season on a two year old, healthy, happy, queen?

 

Yes there are medical protocols available. Don’t hesitate to discuss them with your veterinarian.

If he does not know or has never used them, we are more than happy to share those protocols directly with them.

My boys can detect when the girls are ready one day BEFORE they start calling.  So, what day is considered day 1 of their heat?  When they start calling, or when the boys detect they are ready?

 

We usually consider day 1 of heat when the queen starts calling.

Do melatonin pills work to supress heats ?

 

Unfortunately no, you need a sustained release delivery of melatonin to obtain such an effect (which is why implants are usually used). Pills won’t work here.

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