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11 May 2016
Bobby was presented to Will, one of the primary clinicians at Willows, one afternoon for a pre-operative consultation to discuss the options regarding a problem he had had since birth.
He was suffering from a condition called cryptorchidism, otherwise known as an undescended testicle. What made Bobby’s case more unusual was that he was affected on both sides. After a discussion of the pros and cons of operating compared with not operating, it was decided that he would be booked in for surgery. When Bobby was anaesthetised a brief ultrasound examination was carried out to try and locate his missing testicles. Luckily for Bobby they had made part of the journey themselves from the abdomen to the scrotum and were located outside of his body. We are pleased to report that Bobby is now doing very well and has fully recovered from his operation without any problems.
Cryptorchidism is a condition that is thought can be genetically passed on to offspring, so it is not advisable to breed from affected animals. The main concern with the condition is the testicles are exposed to higher temperatures than a normal animal and this makes them much more likely to develop a tumour than a normal testicle. If the testicle hasn’t descended by two months of age it is very unlikely that it will after that time. If you think your dog or cat may be affected by this condition please seek advice from your vet.
Neutering male dogs is recommended for the following reasons:
- Entire male dogs can have a tendency to roam and look for bitches on heat. This increases the risk of them becoming lost and/or involved in road traffic accidents.
- Some un-castrated male dogs develop aggressive behaviour towards other male dogs when they mature. Castration prevents or reduces this behaviour. Other forms of aggression are not reliably stopped by castration, however, and in these instances it may be necessary for the dog to be taken for a behavioural consultation.
- Entire male dogs can develop medical problems with their testicles or prostate. Castration can prevent or often cure such diseases.
- A number of un-castrated male dogs show hypersexual behaviour towards people or objects, which can be problematic for both the owner and the dog! This problem usually significantly reduces and may even disappear several weeks after castration.
There is a small risk associated with performing any operation under general anaesthesia. Castrated dogs generally need fewer calories, which means that there can be a tendency for them to put on weight if they continue to be fed the same amount as they did prior to the operation. Simply reducing their food intake following surgery can prevent this issue.
The first step in having your dog castrated is to arrange an appointment with one of the primary vets. During that appointment we will discuss the operation, post-operative considerations and answer any questions you may have at that time.