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Tag: first birth

First pups born from frozen fertilized eggs

A research team led by Prof. Hiroshi Suzuki  at Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine transplanted frozen fertilized ova of a Labrador retriever guide dog into another female of the same breed.

According to The Yomiuri Shimbun, the births could help alleviate the shortage of guide dogs in Japan. 

Potential guide dogs must be neutered before training to prevent them from becoming distracted by sexual urges. That, up to now, has meant those that excel at the work and have the best temperament for it are unable to produce offspring. Only about three of every ten dogs trained pass the test to become guide dogs.

Researchers said eggs taken from a female can be stored indefinitely before being fertilized and implanted in a surrogate dog.

Three puppies were born on Sept. 8., and though one was stillborn, the experiment was judged to have been a success. According to Suzuki, the survival rate of fertilized eggs after freezing is low, and there have been no other successful births to date.

The research was conducted in conjunction with the Sapporo-based Hokkaido Guide Dogs for the Blind Association.

About 8,000 people in Japan have applied to own a guide dog, but only about 1,000 such dogs are in active service.