My Puppy Dog's Testicles Have Not Dropped, Why?
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As occurs in males of most species, even in human beings, there is a stage in which testicles must descend from the abdominal cavity into the scrotal bag.
Sometimes we may have doubts regarding the correct timing for this, if it varies between species, quality of life or diet. Surely these and other factors will affect it, but how do I know if I should wait further or consult a veterinarian?
In this AnimalWised article we will try to respond to some of your questions on this topic and discover why my puppy dog's testicles have not dropped?
What is the cryptorchidism? Why does it occur?
Cryptorchidism, or the retention of both testicles, as we said in the introduction, is a fairly common condition amongst puppy dogs. These normally descend in the scrotum when our puppy is very young, which can vary according to breeds, but it is estimated that before 2 months of age they should already be there. In some breeds this can occur later, but never later than 6 months old.
Cryptorchidism may occur because of an incomplete descent, a single testicle descent or the lack of both in the scrotal cavity. When we detect that at 6 months our puppy dog has no testicles in place we must go to the vet to see what is happening with our little one.
Symptoms that can be observed
When the descent of one or both testicles does not happen we can infer that these are retained in an inferior part of the body. This is rarely accompanied by pain or any other sign of disease.
For example, they are sometimes retained in the inguinal canal, this is like a bridge that communicates the spermatic cord with the testicles. If they are there, the specialist can diagnose this through a physical examination. But in cases where these have not descended from the abdominal cavity, where they are at birth, we will have to resort to an ultrasound to see where they are located and their size. Often they have not yet developed correctly or they are excessive in size.
Miniature breeds, shepherds and boxers are those that have greater incidences of those pathologies. They are believed to be of genetic transmission, as a recessive chromosomal trait linked to sex. Although not associated to any symptom in particular, we must be mindful of some signs which may appear, among which you will find:
- Acute abdominal pain: this may be because the spermatic cord is tangled and cutting irrigation in the area. We shall see our puppy dog is depressed, perhaps with fever and pain when touching the tummy.
- Penis shrinking and growing breasts: this can be due to a lack of development of one or both testicles by an abnormal segregation of female hormones.
All of those problems can produce a high risk of testicular cancer, so you must go to the vet, especially on the onset of the mentioned symptoms.
Diagnosis and treatment
As we mentioned above, the veterinarian may diagnose the dog through a physical examination involving palpation of the area. Many times this will suffice. But other times, when complementary methods are needed, he or she will use an ultrasound.
There is a great variety of treatments that the veterinarian may recommend. They will depend on the severity of the case in which the diagnosis is found. Very few cases respond to medication, but sometimes it is worth trying a hormone injection if physiologically everything is normal. Normally castration is drawn upon, for many reasons:
- They can develop tumours in the testicles that have not descended.
- Avoiding genetic transmission to their descendants.
- Decrease the reactivity (very common in dogs with a single descended testicle).
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.
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