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Repeat breeding is an expensive hitch at every level of dairy production from small scale to large scale. It affects the profitability of dairy cattle thus increasing the age at first calving in heifers, extending the inter-calving period, each time the insemination fails and decreasing the calf crop at the last. The underlying reasons for a cow becoming a repeat breeder could be many of which anatomical, functional, infectious, and managemental causes are the main.

When can a cow be called a repeat breeder?

A cow is called a repeat breeder when it

  • has failed to conceive even after three or more number of services

  • has a normal oestrus cycle length

  • no abnormality in the vaginal discharge

  • no palpable abnormality in the reproductive tract

  • has calved at least once before and

  • less than ten years of age

What are the main causes of repeat breeding?


Persistent hymen

Cervical problems

Ovobursal adhesions

Fibrous fallopian tubes

Uterine adhesions


Delayed ovulation


Luteal insufficiency

Failure of nidation of the fertilized ovum

Deficiency of Progesterone

Excess of estrogen


Specific and non-specific uterine infections associated with fertilization failure or early embryonic mortality

Clinical or sub-clinical endometritis

Bacterial or mycotic endometritis


Improper semen handling

Faulty AI technique


Incorrect AI time

Deficiency of energy

Aged sperm and ovum

Poor hygiene at the time of calving and A.I

Poor management and handling of frozen semen or poor quality semen

High ambient temperature and humidity, stress.

Genetic or chromosomal abnormalities- most prevalent in Jersey and Holstein.

Age- higher incidences of repeat breeding is seen in old cows

Nutritional- Mandatory weight of cows for the breeding of indigenous and jersey cross heifer is 240-275 kg and for HF cross heifer 260-290 kg. Underweight animals show poor rates of conception. Balanced feeding (energy, fat, protein, vitamins, and minerals) is a must to avoid the incidence of repeat breeding.

What are the different types of repeat breeders?

An early repeater is an animal in which the luteal function is shorter than the normal physiological oestrus cycle in a non-bred cow. In these cows, the most probable event could be either failure of fertilization (delayed ovulation, poor semen quality, etc.) or early embryonic death (delayed ovulation, poor embryo quality, unfavorable uterine environment, precocious luteolysis). The cows return to heat within 17-24 days after AI.

A late repeater is a cow in which heat is observed later than 25 days after AI. In these animals, the luteal function is observed to be maintained for longer than the physiological luteal phase in non-bred cows. Fertilization and initial recognition of pregnancy take place but for some reason (inadequate luteal function, inadequate embryo signaling, infectious diseases, induced luteolysis) luteolysis is induced and pregnancy is lost.

How can a repeat breeder be identified and treated?

Diagnosis of repeat breeding itself is a challenging task. Heat record maintenance is a must to find out whether a cow is an early heat repeater or a late heat repeater. Cows that have had three services and are not pregnant should be checked before serving again by a veterinarian. Various antibiotics, hormonal, and nutritional supplementation therapeutics are practiced for overcoming problems of repeat breeding. Antibiotic such as ceftiofur sodium @ 2.2mg/kg is recommended. In repeat breeding cases due to uterine infections, prostaglandins can be used at 13 days apart.

A combination of uterine lavage with PGF2 alpha is preferred for treating endometritis. Besides this, the maintenance of positive energy balance, especially during the transition period is the most influential factor for good reproductive health. Micronutrients and vitamin supplementation such as Se, Zn, Cu, Mn, and vitamin A, D, and E have also proved beneficial to prevent uterine infection postpartum.

As there is no single cause that leads to repeat breeding syndrome, the following guidelines are recommended if no specific cause has been identified.

Bringing the animal into positive nutritive balance.

Use of good quality semen having more than 50 percent progressive forward motility.

Insemination of the cow at the right time of the estrum. AI twice at 12 to the 24-hour interval.

Proper AI technique.

After AI, clitoral massage or 100 micrograms of GnRH or 1500 IU of the luteinizing hormone can be administered to stimulate ovulation.

Skip the AI; administer 1 million units of penicillin in saline twice at 12 hours intervals during estrum.

Flushing the uterus with normal saline with moderate pressure to remove cellular debris or mild blocks in oviducts.

Sexual rest for two consecutive cycles and breeding.

Homeopathic remedies and their recommendations

Alteris Ferinosa

Indicated in the case predisposed to uterine hemorrhages whether after an abortion, parturition, forceful expulsion of the placenta, or any other reason.

Aurum Met

It is well indicated in all sorts of disturbances observed in reproductive organs and is also useful in relieving bone or joint pains due to stress or excessive exercise.

Apis Mellifica

It is well indicated in any inflammatory, itchy, stinging, reddening, or painful conditions of ovaries.


The condition of leucorrhoea with clear, copious, or albuminous discharge can be treated with borax. It is well indicated in cases of sterility, distension in the clitoris with sticky discharge, and other related affections.

Calcarea Phosphorica

It is best indicated in cases of young animals that are deficient in calcium with poorly developed bones, fractured unhealed bones, weak muscle contraction, and other symptoms.


It is indicated in cases of any nervous symptoms or nerve deformities related to reproductive conditions.


It is an extract from the ovarian follicles, known by the name folliculin, the hormone secreted by the ovaries called estrogen. Indicated in hormonal therapy.

Murex Purpurea

Palpable cysts in the ovary are treated with this remedy.


It is an ovarian extract which is indicated in case of ovarian cysts.


It is an essential remedy for all the common ailments of the female reproductive organs and nervous systems like irregular estrous cycles, vulval itching, severe pain in the ovaries, and related symptoms.


Goel Vet Pharma Pvt. Ltd. is a renowned homeopathic pharma company that releases renowned products into the market each year which can be truly called a bliss to the poor livestock farmers of India. Homeopathy is one such best alternative to conventional treatments available due to their no side effect or no contraindications formula.

All the homeopathic formulations of this company are prepared by a renowned veterinarian with continuous guidance and references from homeopathy practitioners from all over India. These are truly feasible, economical, and definitely farmer-friendly. Over the years, they have gained the trust of many field veterinarians and livestock farmers. FERTISULE is one such wonder formulation specially formulated with all the necessary remedies that could relieve the animal from all the known causes of repeat breeding. It can even be recommended in animals where every other alternative has failed. Hence, think not to try this for the good of the poor animal and its owner as it is side effects and contraindications free.


Homeopathic treatment protocol recommended for repeat breeders

Protocol 1

  • Lycopodium 1m : Two drops once in a week : Start on 1st day.

  • Aurum muriaticum Natronatum 200 : Two drops 3 days interval : Start on 2nd day.

  • Sepia 200 : Two drops 3 days interval : Start on 3rd day.

  • Graphitis 200 : Two drops 2 days interval : Start on 4th day.

  • Continue treatment 21 days before and after artificial Insemination.

Protocol 2

This may be followed to overcome infections leading to retention of foetal membranes, endometritis, salpingitis, oophoritis, cervicitis, and anovulatory heat.

  • Alteris farinose 30

  • Aurum muriaticm Natronatum 30

  • Calcarea phos 30

  • Pulsatilla 30- Pulsatilla is a plant. The parts of the plant that grow above the ground are dried and used as medicine. Pulsatilla is used for painful conditions of the male or female reproductive system, skin conditions, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support its use.

  • Phosphorus 30 at the rate of 3 ml, made up to 120 ml with vimeral liquid @ 2-5 ml BID for 25 days.


To read more about homeopathy, visit our previous blogs:

  1. Homeocare For Bovine Mastitis

  2. Role Of Homeopathy In Treating Dermatitis In Pets

  3. Treating Arthritis In Pets With Homeopathy

  4. Homeopathy For Ameliorating Anorexia In Pets

  5. Homeocare For Symptoms Of Canine Distemper

  6. Emerging Role Of Homeopathy In Veterinary

  7. Treating Pseudo-pregnancy With Homeopathy



Every year farmers face huge financial losses due to repeat breeders, which is in terms of repeated insemination, cost of feeding without production, production loss due to delayed conception. Moreover, as there is no specific cause for repeat breeding condition, farmers choose to go for multiple antibiotics, hormonal, and saline therapy which in the long-run has an adverse effect on fertility and further reproductive loss. So considering the present scenario, treatments like Homeopathy can be seen as a better alternative for conventional treatment. It has many added advantages of being economically feasible, no known contraindications or side effects, easily available, and many others. Until the farmers are being benefitted and the animals are getting recovered why there is a need to judge which treatment is correct and which is wrong.


Chandel, B. S., et al. "Homeopathic treatment of repeat breeding in bovines in north Gujarat." (2009).


Shruti Mishra

MVSc. Scholar, ICAR-IVRI


Dr. Hemalatha Talluri

Dr. Amit Kumar Tripathy

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