Where's the Beef?

A Service of the FoxNest Veterinary Hospital....Seneca, South Carolina...and the AnimalPetDoctor.com

Home:Animal Pet Doctor

On This Page:

Undescended Testicles

On Other Pages:

Introduction to Reproduction in Dogs & Cats

Whelping or Delivering Puppies

Alternatives to Spaying and castration for birth control

Newborn Care for Puppies and Kittens

Momma Dogs who won't nurse.  Agalactia (no milk) 

Mastitis (infection of the mammary glands)

Pyometra (infection of the uterus)

False Pregnancy

Dystocia or Problems giving Birth

Birth Control Alternatives to Spaying
and Castration

Brucellosis This disease causes abortions.  This serious disease is also contagious to humans and other mammals.

Reproductive Surgery:

Spays (Ovariohysterectomies) in Dogs, Cats, and Other Pets

C Sections
Includes an interesting short history about a women doctor pretending to be a man performing the first modern C Section

Castration in Dogs, Cats, and Other Pets.  Includes recipes for Rocky Mountain Oysters, Montana Tendergroins, and Swinging Beef.  What Viagra is made from.

On Other Pages about other topics:

Declawing Cats

Ear Cropping


Cancer and Mass Removal

Fracture Repair

Abdominal Surgery

Using the Omentum

Soft Tissue Surgery

Referral Veterinarians, Specialists, and Veterinary Colleges at your service

Hernia Surgery

About the Treatment of Injuries, Abscess', ETC

Tuberculosis, Plague, and Brucellosis. Pasteurella, Encephalitis, Samonella, e-coli, and Cryptosporidium: a brief review of these zoonotic diseases that you can get from pets

Diseases people get from pets from mosquitos, fleas, ticks, and lice
malaria, yellow fever, encephalitis, plague, heartworms, Rift Valley Fever, Lymes Disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Tick Paralysis, Monkey Pox, etc

Denistry: why oral hygiene and health is so important and what you can do about it

Dermatology: How I treat skin diseases in pets

Orthopedics: How I treat arthritis, pannus, hip dysplasia, and other problems of the bones and joints

Ear problems and the miracle treatment Zymox

Ophthalmology: Eye Problems discussed

Diseases of the blood

Metabolic Diseases like Diabetes, Cushings Disease, Addison's Disease, and Thyroid Disease

Cardiology: Heart problems in cats and dogs

History of Veterinary Medicine in the United States

Diseases of the:

Intestinal System
Respiratory System
Joints & Bones

Diseases People get from Pets

Training and Behavior

The Human Animal Bond

The Pharmacy Page; about the medicines we use as well as information about alternative medicines

The Poison Page

Our Wild Life Page

Our Nutrition Page

Undescended Testicles (Cryptorchids)

Every once in a while a male puppy will have only one testicle in the scrotal sac instead of the normal two.  Or none.

In the normal pup, the testicles develop in the abdominal cavity but within a few months (usually just days) they descend through the inguinal opening and make their way into the scrotal sac.

This is more common in toy breeds and is an inherited trait.  For this reason alone, we encourage castration; to prevent this trait from being passed on.  But there’s another reason: Dogs with an undescended testicle are much more likely to develop future testicular cancer.

The only problem with castrating these guys, though, is sometimes we can’t easily find or get to the undescended testicle... at least not without making an incision into the inguinal ring and going into the abdominal cavity ... a much more involved surgery than the typical castration.

Here’s the deal:

If you don’t do anything at all, you may luck out and the second testicle will eventually come out.  This is a reasonable approach for pups up to 6 months of age, but after that, forget it.  You risk both future testicular cancer and passing the problem along to future generations.

If you castrate the descended testicle, but leave the undescended one ... usually because your vet couldn’t find it without doing major abdominal surgery...it’s safe to assume that the undescended testicle will be sterile, but it may very well produce testosterone and all the behavioral problems that goes with it.  And again, there’s a higher chance of future testicular cancer if an active testicle is left in the warm environment of the abdomen. 

Sometimes the undescended testicle is not active ...apparently it just never developed much... and there’s no problem with leaving it alone.  One way to tell is to wait until after puberty and see what happens.  If your pet starts lifting it’s leg and marking every tree and so forth, despite having had it’s one exposed testicle castrated, then it’s a good bet there’s an active testicle in the abdomen and you should consider surgical removal despite your frustration in “having to pay for the same surgery twice”!  I guess you have to expect imperfections in life...I know my wife does.

In any event, your vet will give you several choices, but in general, it’s best to get the job done, despite needing more extensive surgery, to prevent future problems.