Poodles/stud age


QUESTION: Which male dog do you think has more viable healthy sperm?
A 10 year old (who has had one litter a year since age 2)
or a 10 month old?

ANSWER: Hello Paula,
It would depend on the size of the male dog.  If he is a Standard Poodle, then his sperm count could be lowered due to his age.  The smaller the dog, the slower the aging process.  It would also depend on the dogs health.  If your dogs body is healthy, then he has a higher chance of producing healthy sperm.  
I talked to a Sperm Collection and Preservation unit 2 years ago at a dog show that told me they had collected healthy sperm on dogs as old as 17 years.  I would assume that these dogs are going to be smaller, but that would lead me to believe that a 10 yr old dogs sperm would still be viable and healthy, given that the dog was still healthy.

Now, that being said, as far as the 10 month old dog goes, it would also depend on the size and maturity of the dog.  It is said that males can produce sperm as young as 6 months old, but that is going to be immature and possibly unhealthy sperm.  However, if the dog is 10 months old and has produced sperm since the age of 6 months, the sperm might be healthy and mature enough to produce a healthy litter.  
There are alot of factors that will determine healthy sperm.  Health of the animal being the number one priority, then the maturity level of the animal.  Temperature and Climate play a part also as the sperm cannot survive in temperatures too cold or too hot. This can be more difficult to maintain depending on where the animal is kept.  The testicles have to depend on the warmth of the body to keep the temperature in the ideal range.  If the dog is kept in a cold or hot environment, this makes it more difficult to keep the sperm within the acceptable range.  Certain medications can have an effect on sperm also.  Activity levels can also have an effect because if the dog is very active, this can raise the body temp, which can affect the sperms health and vitality.  

I hope this helps you some.  Please feel free to ask me anything else about this topic or other questions about Poodles.  

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---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: The males are standard poodles. Both are in great health and up to date on vacs etc. Last year our 2 yr old female had 6 pups from our 9 year old male.
Now that he's almost 10 we just don't know if we would be better off breeding with him or our younger male.
This may sound sort of strange. But our older boy has always smelled hormones about 2 months before our girls go into heat. He acts as tho they are in heat for a couple days. Then he stops until its time. Our young man followed suit and also sniffed and mounted her off and on for a few days. (a stud in training :). About the climate, they live inside our home.

Hello again.  
I wasn't sure if these were your personal dogs or if it was a general question.  I gave a general answer.  I figured if these were your personal dogs that they would be well cared for.  In my opinion, I would say that your 10 yr old male would probably still have viable sperm if you chose to use him.  You can get your male tested to see if his sperm is still healthy and viable.  Your Vet should be able to get a sample and test it.  If he can't, there are other Vets that can.  It is basically extracting the sperm and looking at it under a microscope, and counting them.  
I know I wanted to use my male when he was around 12 yrs. old.  My vet said that he thought he would be ok to use as long as he was healthy.  We found that my male had one testicle that was larger than the other and my Vet thought that he could have had a tumor on the testicle, which would render any sperm not viable.  My vet said that he thought that if he hadn't had the tumor, his sperm would have been ok.

I would say to go with the dog you are wanting to use.  Either dog should be fine for breeding.  If you are unsure, check to see if your Vet can test the sperm health and count.  

Again, I hope this helps and Good luck with your Breeding.  If you have other Poodle questions for me, please feel free to ask.

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Kim Wingate


I can answer general questions about Poodles. My specific area of expertise is Standard Poodles, but I will answer all questions about Poodles and dog related questions if I can. If I can't answer your question, I will be able to find information or someone who can.


I am a Dog Groomer and Dog Trainer, who has raised Standard Poodles for over 25 years. I can answer Housebreaking questions, Obedience/Training questions, Grooming questions, Breeding questions, and General Dog questions. I can also give SUGGESTIONS about general Health questions, but as I am not a Certified Vet, I cannot and will not diagnose illnesses. If you think that your dog is seriously ill, please contact your own Vet.

I am a member of the American Kennel Club.

I have worked at several Pet stores in my area, worked for a year as a Vet Tech, was an apprentice for a Dog Trainer, and have also worked at a Grooming/Showing kennel for several months. I have also raised, shown, currently train, and groom my own Standard Poodles, and have for over 25 years.

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