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Reprod Domest Anim. 2009 Jul;44 Suppl 2:76-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1439-0531.2009.01451.x.

Plasma LH, ovulation and conception rates in cats mated once or three times on different days of oestrus.

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  • 1Department of Reproduction, Nippon Veterinary and Life Science University, Musashino, Tokyo, Japan. tsutsui@nvlu.ac.jp


Although cats are induced ovulators, the relationship between the day of breeding, the number of matings and the likelihood of ovulation and conception have not been extensively investigated. In this experiment, cats were mated either once or three times on day 1 or day 5 of oestrus to study the incidence of the LH surge, ovulation and conception rates. The percentage ovulating and the conception rates after a single mating on day 1 of oestrus were 60% (6/10) and 33.3% (2/6), respectively, and for cats mated once on day 5 of oestrus were 83.3% (10/12) and 40% (4/10), respectively. When cats were mated three times on day 1 of oestrus, the ovulation rates and conception rates were 70% (7/10) and 85.7% (6/7), respectively, and for those mated three times on day 5 of oestrus were 100% (10/10) and 100% (10/10), respectively. The concentration of LH did not increase in non-ovulating cats, and cats that were mated three times had LH concentrations that were numerically higher than those that were mated once. Litter size was neither related to the day of mating nor to the number of matings. Although an increase in the number of matings on day 1 of oestrus produced a numerically larger LH surge, it did not increase the ovulation rate, suggesting that plasma oestradiol concentrations were not sufficiently elevated to induce a high pituitary response to mating stimulation. The conception rate after a single mating was low, suggesting that the number of sperm per mating was not sufficient. These results suggest that mating more than once in the middle of oestrus is required to improve ovulation rates and conception rates in cats.

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