Breeding stallions at Auburn present educational opportunities for students

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Auburn’s Equine Theriogenology program, in the JT Vaughan Large Animal Teaching Hospital, is recognized as one of the finest centers for reproduction in the country. It is that well-known expertise that has brought Tommy Bradbury, of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, and his prized Quarter Horse stallion, Frenchmans Maximum, to Auburn for the last four years.

Max, as his owner calls him, serves as a valuable educational tool while he stands at the college, allowing for the clinical teaching of equine theirogenology. With Max, students will have the opportunity to gain experience in every part of equine pregnancy, from breeding through pregnancy, to birth and foal care.

“We’re very fortunate to have such a high-dollar, very nice stallion standing here,” said Dr. Aime Johnson, a faculty clinician in the Theriogenology Service. “He’s a good horse to work with, has a great attitude and is a very safe horse to interact with. Our students love him.”

Max was welcomed to Auburn in February, right before the birth of his newest foal, a filly named AU Frenchmans Wicked Lil Rose.

Lil Rose was born Feb. 25 from college-owned mare, Betty Buy Rose, who was bred to Max during the 2015 breeding season. Bradbury gave permission for the breeding because of the excellent care and management that Max receives during his stays, and has done so for each year Max has been here.

“Normal gestation in a horse is 340 days, but they can go as many as 20 days before or after,” Dr. Johnson said. “She actually held on to Lil Rose for 371 days, so the students waited on this foal for a long, long time.”

Students have been learning a great deal about managing equine pregnancy while Betty Buy Rose was pregnant, and Lil Rose will continue to provide invaluable, hands-on educational experiences to students as she spends her first few months growing up at Auburn.

Rose was also recently confirmed pregnant with a second foal from Max and is due in 2017.

Bradbury, whose son, Marcus, graduated from the college in 2013, was aware of the excellent services provided by the equine theriogenology service, and decided to have him stand at the college and manage his breeding.

Frenchmans Maximum will remain at Auburn until June for the mating season, and horse owners can negotiate a contract with Bradbury to breed their mares with Max.

The foals from Auburn-owned horses, like Lil Rose, will be auctioned during the 3rd Annual Equine Educational Seminar, a day-long event that provides information to horse owners, continuing education credit for veterinarians, and a chance to purchase horses owned by the college.

“We’re just very happy that Max comes down to Auburn every year, and that we now have Lil Rose,” Dr. Johnson said. “Tommy Bradbury has been excellent to work with, and Max has such a great personality, we’re just very appreciative to have him.”

To learn more about the Equine Theriogenology Service at the college, click here.

(Written by Ed Brown)