Advanced Deer Genetics

Providing Top-Notch Reproductive Services

By: Gail Veley
Originally appeared in the Spring 2019 Issue of Whitetails of Louisiana

Dr. Jason Coe believes he and his crew are filling a great need in providing much needed reproductive services to deer farmers. “There are not enough veterinarians willing to help deer farmers with their problems,” his story begins. “These farmers have a significant amount of money tied up in their deer and depend on them for income. So, being “willing to work with this group is very important to the health and growth of this industry. If the farmers can’t get help, then they will not stay in the business long. I hope that my clients see what we do as an asset to their operation."

Because of Coe's beliefs, Advanced Deer Genetics has been in operation since 2011. Offering deer related medical care year-round, the crew is busiest October through January when they are on the road performing A.I. procedures, embryo transfers, and semen collection. Afterward, in the spring, vaccinations become the focus as fawning season grows near. “Fawning season always brings another upswing in our need to help out," Coe said. “We like to start with vaccination of the does prior to fawning, then we move right into the fawning season. Anymore, farmers are pretty handy at taking care of most of their problems. I do more phone consultations these days, but I do see some breached fawns or the need for a c-section. I also expect to see a lot of sick fawns that perhaps won’t nurse, or those that have leg deformities that need splinting. You just never know what this time of year will bring."

Although Coe and his crew are ready year-round to assist farmers as well as this coming spring, the fall season necessitates an increased focus on their mission. As October approaches, not one, but three trucks complete with living quarters and state-of-the-art laboratories are prepped for a four-month journey traveling to as many as 17 different states during their trek. “We travel to states such as Louisiana and all the way from Wisconsin to Florida and from New York to New Mexico,” Coe, 44, said. “It’s nothing for us to start our day in Kentucky and then be in Texas the next day.” His crew even travels by plane to places such as New Zealand, Spain, and Canada where they spend time with veterinarians in their labs assisting with reproductive procedures.

Coe truly takes his veterinarian oath to protect and care for the well-being of animals seriously, as he is part of two animal-related businesses, Advanced Deer Genetics caters to deer and the other, Animal Hospital PC located in Oneonta, Alabama, concentrates on dogs, cats, horses and cows. When he isn't on the road for the deer, he spends most of his time in Oneonta. Compared to horses and cows, deer are slightly more intricate to deal with as they “are always trying to commit suicide" anytime you work with them, Coe said. Therefore, he and his crew are careful to perform every procedure as patiently and thoroughly as they can. Strict protocol is part of every farm visit. The moment they are done, they thoroughly clean the lab before leaving for their next destination.

Coe credits (or maybe “‘blames") one of his close high school friends for getting him involved with deer. “When I graduated from Auburn College of Veterinary Medicine in 2001, the clinic I went to work for had a couple of hobby farmers that raised deer," he said “I would help them when I could, but It was never a serious business. Then this friend of mine decided to buy some breeding stock and get serious." In the beginning Coe and his friend focused mainly on herd management and learning how to keep them alive. But as things progressed, Coe became more interested in genetic advancements that could be made through A.I. procedures. He then realized the vast contribution he could make to the deer industry by offering reproductive services.

“I always enjoy the phone calls where you’ve helped someone with their A.I. and they let you know how well it went." Coe said. "I love working with the fawns as well. When they respond to treatments and go home healthy, that is always a win. I also love to get calls in the spring from people who tell me they've got fawns on the ground and everyone is doing well." Calls like the help to balance out the inevitable heartache that can come from working so diligently to save deer, only to have an epidemic sweep through the herd or to have other things beyond your control occur and claim them.

Another inevitably tough situation for Coe is his time away from his understanding wife of 20 years, Jennifer, and their sons Conner, 16, Spencer, 12, and Griffin, 11. Because as much as he loves deer “what matters to me the most is being a Dad and a husband," Coe said. When the family is all together, they spend time tending to 50 cows or with their eight quarter horses team roping or participating in junior rodeo events. They also own two blue heeler/border collie mixes and two dachshunds. And as much as he might like to, Coe does not own deer. He would rather help out everyone else instead.

“I thoroughly enjoy the deer industry and all the people in it,” Coe said. “It has afforded me opportunities to be recognized nationally and in the veterinary community. Deer farmers are some of the most rewarding and easiest individuals to work with. I‘m proud to be part of it"
Dr. Jason Coe
Phone: 205-446-9386