The Early Years

Canine Cryobank was started in 1981 by myself, Carol Bardwick, and Steve Broder, a young cryobiologist, in Los Angeles. A small company, we always surprised ourselves and others. When recent canine semen companies talk about the millions of dollars spent in research to develop their extenders and techniques, Steve and I remember our first visit with the American Kennel Club representatives. Their mouths dropped when we told them we had spent three months and US$300 in research cost for our first litter. AKC had funded researchers with thousands of dollars for frozen semen research and was led to believe the procedures were expensive, complicated, and the technology secret. Six Cardigan Corgis were born from our first insemination done by Dr. Richard Martin in West Los Angeles.

Canine frozen semen was being pooh-poohed at the Theriogenology meeting in Denver in 1984. At that time we had a 100% conception rate. I was intimidated by all the learned academics saying frozen semen didn't work and didn't say anything! But, I'll never forget a veterinarian in the audience and telling the professor, who had just announced poor conception rates at her institution, "Gee, I just had a frozen semen litter with frozen semen from Canine Cryobank and I never handled the stuff before!"

Shipping cooled semen: a service
every small animal practitioner can provide
Within two months of the AKC announcement to allow cooled (not frozen) semen litters, we had a cooled semen litter of five Dachshunds in Hawaii. We had six out of eight litters in Japan using cooled Beagle semen. Our shipping kits are sent to any veterinarian wanting to provide this service for their clients. I take pride in the fact that our shipping kit was computer tested years ago and now other marketing companies use the same packaging kit.

Commitment to ongoing research
Research has been ongoing in spite of the fact that we are not funded nor joint ventured with any big money firms. Our research has always ended up helping breeders directly or indirectly. We were using progesterone testing (1988) before the in-house Elisa tests became available. Two firms now manufacturing in-house progesterone tests used our data to develop their kits. When we couldn't find institutions addressing our concerns we conducted our own research. Which mycoplasma species should we be concerned about? Does mycoplasma have any correlation to post thaw results? Does any bacteria affect post thaw results?

During our first decade, only one other
facility's frozen semen impressed me
Whenever I thawed semen from George Govette of C.L.O.N.E., I was thrilled! When I contacted him about changing our protocols to match those he developed, George in Pennsylvania had more non-surgical frozen semen litters on the ground than all frozen semen facilities combined . He had developed a freeze and thaw protocol that was much simpler than ours for the inseminating veterinarians to successfully master.

Also Govette shared my concern that due to lack of frozen semen litter success by a Smith Kline start up company, that company had started promoting surgical insemination of frozen semen to breeders and veterinarians. George and I were demoralized that due to lack of research of the "moneyed" company, bitches would be subjected to unnecessary surgery. We agreed to cooperate to try to promote the use of frozen semen with non-surgical inseminations.

Our goals of education and accessible service
Education and resources for breeders and veterinarians have a high priority. Besides lecturing all over the world, we hold seminars monthly. Our artificial insemination kits, videotape, books, are used in Universities, Colleges, and by breeders worldwide. Our seminars concentrate on reproductions assessments and treatments for the bitch and stud. It is our intent to make breeders educated consumers of veterinary reproductive medicine. We are seeing clients in our San Diego facility, and continue to provide unique and quality service for our clientele.

Our first decade was exciting, progressive and satisfying. Our next decade is proving to be more innovative and dynamic. If we can help your or your clients in any way, please contact us!

BISS/SBIS Ch. Tirarah's
High-Flying Victory

Frozen Semen
Litters Worldwide
Our techniques were proved time and again
over the years — litters from long-stored semen
We haven't had to change our extenders over the years. Steve Broder, our cryobiologist, always had a magic touch for single cell cryopreservation. Semen frozen by Priscilla, Steve, or me with his extender from 1983 was producing litters in 1991: An Irish Setter litter (Steve), a Belgian Tervuren litter (Priscilla), and a Great Dane litter (Carol).

Litters from semen shipped in

Our inseminations using semen from other companies is acceptable. We have produced frozen semen litters with every operating bank's sperm.

The litters keep arriving, no progesterone testing
or surgical inseminations in those days

After the first litter, we shipped semen seven times and had six litters. All litters were produced by veterinarians using whatever artificial insemination method they happened to know. Back then, the only training we offered was one page of written thaw instructions. Those were the days before progesterone testing and surgical inseminations. Now, of course, we have a videotape on artificial insemination equipment. In our clinic, we now place semen in the oviducts in a non-surgical procedure, do surgical inseminations, and us the "old method," intervaginal inseminations. Canine Cryobank, Inc. purposefully developed its Freeze/Thaw process and services so that a private practice veterinarian may successfully inseminate with thawed semen.

After realizing that we couldn't do it alone,
we found a reproduction specialist

Steve and I realized during the first year of operation that canine frozen semen was not going to be the multi-million dollar business that human sperm banking is today. First, dog people want a certain stud and nothing can dissuade them to switch dogs. Dog owners are concerned about inheritable genetic disease and phenotype. People going to a human sperm bank never ask about the genetic makeup of the sperm besides hair color, height, and race. They do often ask if the donor was a student in a professional discipline. Dog owners will decide on a particular stud and move heaven and earth to breed to that dog!

The other reason custom semen banking for dogs would always be limited: Not enough semen was capable of withstanding the processing. The incidence of infertility was dramatic in purebred dogs and we had no way of helping those dogs. We needed a reproduction specialist.

In 1984 after finding out there were very few small animal reproduction specialists, we convinced Priscilla Stockner to move to California and start her specialty practice in conjunction with the sperm bank. She was uniquely qualified for our growing business. Besides her veterinary degree, Priscilla had a Master's in Reproductive Physiology and an MBA. And, just as important as her research and academic background, she had been an active dog enthusiast, raising, showing and hunting several breeds.

Other veterinarians became licensees
including one from Europe and Japan
Priscilla wanted to educate other veterinarians in reproduction protocols for the serious breeder and fancier. She and I traveled all over the world lecturing on small animal reproduction for the practitioner. Over the years we trained nine veterinarians in reproduction assessment and secondarily, in frozen semen procedures. We always made it very clear to our licensees that frozen semen would be a limited "hook" for their practice. Any increased revenues would be generated from the much needed reproductive protocols.

Our licensees are enthusiastic, dedicated progressive veterinarians from all areas of the country, Japan, and Belgium. They traveled to California and spent two days training with Priscilla in all facets for reproduction assessment and treatment. All of our licensees have had frozen semen litters or have frozen semen that produced frozen semen litters.

Canada didn't have a frozen semen litter
we accepted the challenge of international shipping
International shipping of semen is complicated and, at times, frustrating. We were proud to have a litter in Sweden the first year in business, not realizing that one litter means people want you to send it again! The Canadian Kennel Club told us there had never been a litter in Canada. So, we gritted our teeth when working with the import regulations and Canine Cryobank had the first frozen semen litter in Canada --eleven Borzois. Licensee Dr. Betty Trainor sent semen to South Africa and Dr. Dan Bruke, licensee in New Mexico, sent semen to Australia. Betty's litter was eleven Rhodesian Ridgebacks and Dan's was seven Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers.


Since 1981, Carol Scott Bardwick has produced approximately 17,000 pups personally, either by artificial insemination with fresh, cooled, or frozen semen or natural breedings. Worldwide, many other pups have been produced by veterinarians and breeders trained by Bardwick including Dr. K. Kawase in Japan, Dr. Bogaarts in Belgium, Dr. Ian Gunn in Australia.

In the U.S. veterinarians instructed by Bardwick in collecting/ evaluation/ and frozen/cooled semen processing include Dr. Dan Burke, of New Mexico, Dr. Betty Trainor of Massachusetts, Dr. Nik of Oklahoma, Dr. Dan Jordan of Colorado, Dr. Jon Bettridge of Alaska, Dr. Dana Bliefer of California.

Bardwick also instructed Stanford University researchers in frozen semen protocols for use in a narcoleptic Doberman research colony and Dr. Steve Van Camp of North Carolina State Veterinary School for its research colony for investigating muscular degenerative diseases.

Partner Animal Fertility Clinic, Escondido, California 1983-1998
This veterinary clinic was the first in the country to specialize in canine and feline reproduction. Protocols for implementing small animal reproduction and purebred dog and cat specialty medical services into the small animal practice mix of other veterinary practices were developed and taught to veterinarians worldwide through seminars, lectures, at the yearly American Animal Hospital Association national meetings, the Theriogeneology Society Annual Meetings, American Veterinary Associations meetings, and various California Veterinary Association gatherings.

In 1982-1983 the need to precisely time inseminations was very urgent. Vaginal cytology was cumbersome and inexact. Using a large kennel of Malamutes, Bardwick investigated the possibility of timing inseminations with the rise in progesterone levels in the blood. Eventually, a company in England developed a test adequate to time inseminations in canines with input from our field data and thus assuring the future of canine semen industry.

A licensing agreement with the development team Dr . R. Hinkle and R. Herd for their intrauterine insemination technique enabled Canine Cryobank licensees to place through the cervix, non surgically, poorer quality frozen, cooled or fresh semen.

In 1981-1982, monthly seminars were offered to breeders to elevate their breeding skills in semen collection and evaluation, insemination and progesterone testing of the bitches.

Bardwick's articles reproduction have appeared in numerous magazines including Dog World, Dog Fancy, AKC Gazette, Canine Chronicle, Kennel Review, Doberman Reporter, Lhasa Apso Reporter, Great Dane Reporter, Dachshund Reporter, Mastiff Newsletter.

In response to international demand for updates on canine reproduction, cooled semen, and frozen semen, Bardwick has lectured to veterinarians and breeders in Australia, Tasmania, Japan, Canada, and France.

Executive Producer: Videotape Production 1991-present
"Artificial Insemination in Canines"

An instructional videotape that demonstrates the correct collection procedures for small, medium, and large dogs; intervaginal insemination, sperm counts, and progesterone testing, this tape has been purchased by Veterinary Technician Schools and is distributed by Camolet Farms Premate progesterone testing kits.

Editor, Reproduction Resources: Newsletter for Conscientious Breeders
Periodic reports from case files in the Animal Fertility Clinic files and summaries of reproductive lectures, posters, presentations from the Theriogeneology Society and International meetings on Animal Reproduction, etc. of interest to the purebred dog fancy.

Television, Radio, Print Media exposure
Due to the uniqueness of its business, Bardwick has been asked to explain and discuss the Canine Cryobank's business on many television shows including A Current Affair, an internationally syndicated telemagazine show , and every evening local news , including NBC, CBS, ABC, in Los Angeles and San Diego. Radio hosts Fred Harvey, nationally, and a multitude of local radio shows nationwide such as Monterrey, CA. Buffalo, NY. Phila. PA. Utica, NY , the Jeff and Jer Show in San Diego, CA.