My Dog Is Bleeding from His Penis
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Seeing your dog bleed, however small the quantity, is always a cause for alarm and concern among pet guardians. If you notice your male dog is bleeding from his private area, you are likely to be worried. This is especially so when there is no sign of a wound and you cannot tell the source of the blood. Therefore, it is important to consult a veterinarian immediately. The vet can make a proper diagnosis and prescribe necessary treatment.
To give you some general information on the different causes, we at AnimalWised explain the possible reasons why your dog is bleeding from his penis. We also explore what you can do in each case, and the types of diagnosis and treatment you can expect at the veterinary clinic.
Blood coming from a dog's penis - a warning sign
Normally, unless your dog has had an accident or been wounded, the blood you see from coming from the dog's penis will be a few drops of fresh blood. They can appear at the beginning or end of urination, or you may observe blood dripping without urination.
Either way, if observe your dog bleeding from his penis and had not noticed a problem until then, look out for other symptoms of disease, such as:
- More or less frequent urination
- Signs of pain or difficulty urinating
- Loss of appetite
Take your dog to the vet as soon as you can. Providing the vet with as much detail as possible regarding your dog's symptoms will help in their diagnosis of the problem. We would like to stress that only a vet can determine the exact cause for the dog bleeding from his penis, and prescribe the necessary treatment.
Why is my dog bleeding from the penis? - Causes
When unrelated to trauma or injury, blood coming from a dog's penis is normally related to inflammatory diseases or infections caused by one of the following:
- Problems in the urinary tract:diseases affecting the urethra and bladder.
- Problems with prostrate gland: diseases affecting the reproductive system.
Of course, the dog's urethra forms part of both the urinary and genital systems, and disorders in one can often interact with or affect the other. In the following sections we will explain the conditions in each system that can affect a dog and cause penile bleeding.
1. Problems in the urinary tract
Canine cystitis is most often the cause penile bleeding that originates in the urinary tract. Related UTIs or bladder stones can also cause a dog to bleed slightly from his penis. Other possible problems in the urinary system include fungal or viral infections, diseases of the kidney, urethral prolapse or the presence of tumors.
Diagnosis and treatment
To see whether the blood coming from the dog's penis is caused by a urinary tract disorder, the veterinarian will first take a urine sample. Usually, a collection cup is used, as with humans. However, if this method is not possible, or the sample unreliable, the vet may take a direct sample from thebladder.
Infection is detected by the presence of bacteria and abundant lymphocytes (white blood cells that fight infections). If this is the cause of hematuria - blood in the dog's urine - the vet will prescribe antibiotic treatment. If the symptom is related to a different disorder in the urinary system, the vet will recommend the appropriate course of treatment.
2. Problems with the prostrate gland
The prostate is a male reproductive gland that surrounds the urethra. It secretes a fluid that help with the mobility of sperm. There are three conditions that can lead to prostrate enlargement, which is often the cause for a dog bleeding from his penis. These are:
- Prostatitis: this is a bacterial infection affecting the prostrate that can cause pain, difficulty urinating, and blood in the urine or bloody discharge or pus from the dog's penis.
- Prostatic neoplasia: this is the abnormal growth in gland tissues, which is often cancerous. Canine prostrate cancer, for example, can cause bleeding from the dog's penis, as well as traces of blood in urine and stools. For further symptoms and treatment options, take a look at our article on prostrate cancer in dogs.
- Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH): this is an enlargement of the prostate that is most often the cause for penile bleeding related to the dog's reproductive system. It is linked to the production of testosterone and often occurs in older male dogs that have not been spayed.
Since BHP is often the cause of bloody discharge in male dogs, we will discuss its diagnosis and treatment in the next section.
Dog bleeding from the penis - benign prostatic hyperplasia
As we have mentioned, BPH is hormonally dependent (caused by testosterone), which means that the disorder appears in non-neutered males of middle and old age. All intact male dogs eventually develop this condition, but more serious symptoms such as bleeding from the penis only occurs in a few. This may be accompanied by difficulties in urination and defecation. If your dog suffers from such symptoms, the veterinarian will consider castration or sterilization as treatment.
Diagnosis of BPH
The diagnosis prostrate conditions, including benign prostatic hyperplasia, begins with the vet carrying out a thorough rectal exam. Palpation allows them to determine the size, position and consistency of the prostate. If it is enlarged, this will explain why the dog has been bleeding from the penis. To determine the exact prostatic condition the dog is suffering from, other diagnostic methods such as a radiography, ultrasound, or biopsy may be used.
Treating BPH - neutering
Spaying or neutering is most often the treatment recommended for BPH that causes clinical symptoms. This is considered the most effective way to remove the stimulus that causes prostrate enlargement. This helps reduce prostrate size and associated problems such as bloody discharge. There are also other advantages to neutering male dogs, except in some specific cases related to behavioral problems.
It is also important to consider the risks of operations on older dogs, although this is possible if prior tests show that it is safe. In cases where castration is not recommended there are medical options such as hormonal suppression drugs. Your veterinarian will provide you with more information regarding treatment options and recommendations suited to your dog.
This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.
If you want to read similar articles to My Dog Is Bleeding from His Penis, we recommend you visit our Reproductive system diseases category.
- Christensen, B. W. (2018). Canine prostrate disease. Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice, 48(4), 701-719. Retrieved December 12, 2019.
- Renggli, M., et al. (2010). Benign prostatic hyperplasia: treatment options in the dog. Swiss Archive for Veterinary Medicine, 152(6), 279-84. Retrieved December 12, 2019.
- Sontas, B. H., et al. (2010). Blood dripping from the penis of a German Shepherd dog. Australian Veterinary Journal, 88(6), 242-4. Retrieved December 12, 2019.