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Medical Cases

Why Neutering Your Dog Is Wise

All dogs should be neutered if they are not being used for breeding. Intact males can be more aggressive, tend to roam more, and may develop a hernia. They are more likely to have prostate problems and can develop tumors around the rectum as well as testicular cancers.

Andy a Miniature Schnauzer that was eight years old, was obtained from a Humane Society and the owners were told that he was neutered. I first saw him because of a severe skin problem. He was losing fur from his back legs and belly. Tests indicated that he had a low thyroid  level. When he didn’t seem to respond properly to thyroid supplementation, I became suspicious of another cause for this fur loss. I submitted a blood sample to test for excess hormones. He had an estradiol level of 26, with a high normal value in an intact male being 20. When the testicles are retained in the body, they can start producing excess hormones due to the extra heat they are exposed to. They can even start to produce estrogen!

I had Dr. Deb Darien perform an ultrasound examination. She was able to identify one testicle under the skin but couldn’t locate a second one. I did a surgical proceure to remove the testicle in the inguinal canal and then found and removed the second testicle, when I did an exploratory surgery into the abdomen. It was this second testicle that was abnormal and causing him the problems. Three months after the surgery he had significant fur growth in the bald areas and the fur was black instead of gray like the rest of him.

Andy’s current owners were not responsible for his condition and they had him neutered as soon as they knew the cause of his problems. A situation such as this can be averted by having your dog and cat neutered at a young age and removing these hormone factories.

These two pictures show Andy before sugery.

These two pictures are three months after surgery.