Having retained testicle removed but leaving the other? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 07-28-2011, 02:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Having retained testicle removed but leaving the other?

Benny has one retained testicle and is now 27 months and I know neutering is recommended for dogs with a retained testicle because of the increased risk of testicular cancer. My last GSD, Eli had both retained testicles and at the vets recommendation he was neutered at 6 months. He died in 2009 of hemangiosarcoma 5 weeks before his 9th birthday. 6 weeks later we lost my sons 5 year old Pit Bull who died after neutering from undiagnosed hemophilia type B. We only have the Pit neutered because it is a law in our town that all Pits be neutered. We do not breed our dogs, they do not get out. I prefer not to mess with nature when possible, and want to avoid any unnecessary surgery. . I know that it is much more invasive surgery when the testicle is retained

I have read studies that show that neutering, while decreasing the risk of testicular cancer, increased the risk of hemangiosarcoma
Research ; neutering and spaying WebCanine.com
Because Benny is related to Eli on the dam’s side hemangiosarcoma is in his bloodline as well as the retained testicle. I did not hesitate to purchase a pup from the same breeder, thinking the retained testicle n Eli was a fluke and Eli’s mom lived to be 15 before cancer took her. I knew absolutely nothing about bloodlines diseases in German Shepherds two years ago, because my childhood one was so healthy.
I thought that in Benny’s case the best decision was to remove the retained testicle to reduce the risk of Testicular Cancer, but keep the other testicle to reduce the risk of hemangiosarcoma so I I called the vet yesterday to make an apt for Benny for this, along with an xray or ultra pre surgery to find the retained jewel. A breeder told me that occasionally it is reabsorbed by the body and may not eve be there.

The vet tech I spoke with seemed to think I was nuts to just have one testicle removed, even though I explained my reasons and implied they would not do it. I made an apt for a consultation with the doctor for next Friday.
The breeders at Covy Tucker ( who someone recommended I write to) told me that in all theire years they have never had a case of testicular cancer in a cryptorchid dog and said I should just leave Benny alone.

Would love to hear any experience or insight others have had
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Last edited by Debbieg; 07-28-2011 at 02:41 PM. Reason: miz pel
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Old 07-28-2011, 03:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't think they ever really get reabsorbed by the body, unless the testicle dies - then the tissue might. That's how they castrate livestock sometimes - crush the blood vessels leading to the testicles and the body re-absorbs them.

If you're confident in your ability to keep him from breeding (since cryptorchidism is genetically inherited) I'd go ahead and just have the retained one removed. I think the cancer risk is high enough to warrant the surgery, and considering its location it would not have the same kind of extremely good prognosis that testicular cancer normally has. Easy for it to metastasize and with testicular cancer IIRC a popular metastasis location is the bones.

So, I'd leave the good one there - on top of the general benefits of letting a male keep his hormones, you've got a family history of a disease whose risk is increased by castration (and leaving one testicle leaves him fully hormonally intact - one can take over the same job that two do).

If your vet refuses work with you on this one start searching for a new vet. There's no reason you can't leave the good testicle where it is.

Last edited by Draugr; 07-28-2011 at 03:18 PM.
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Old 07-28-2011, 03:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Except for the fact they will most likely have to go in and find the little bugger, if you request only one testicle removed, then that should not be a problem. Sometimes the little buggers are no bigger than your thumb, so usually ultrasounds might find them, but had to say. Our vets can say which testicle is down and then look on the side of the retained one and usually find it pretty easy.
I wonder if she misunderstood you. We have had folks want to neuter their chryptorcid dogs, but they only want us to take the testicle that is in the scrotum, they do not want to spend the money for the other surgery to find the missing one. We won't do that for an ethical standpoint, the dog is not really neutered, even though they can't reproduce and the testicle that could go cancerous is still inside the belly.( Like gelding a horse with one testicle, they will still act like studs, breed and everything, but can't reproduce. In a horse, it can be dangerous to think you bought a gelding and in fact it acts like a stud.)
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We have done vasectomies on dogs, the ranchers want to keep the testicles, but not produce puppies.
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Old 07-28-2011, 03:34 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I had the same issue. One descended testicle, and I only wanted the retained testicle removed. My vet thought I was insane and (I think) nearly refused to do it. I had to quote statistics of the benefits before she believed that it was really an educated decision.
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Old 07-28-2011, 04:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I would remove the one inside and leave the one thats down. You hire the vet, its not up to the vet to make decisions about your pet. If he wont do the surgery find one who will.

Maybe have them do a vasectomy on the one thats down as well? So there is no chance of puppies even tho the chance is pretty slim to begin with.
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Old 10-06-2014, 02:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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my gsd got neuter and cannot find the second one. after two month my gsd has an ultra sound to find the other, unfortunately "none". i tried to have the other to avoid ssuch "caner" in the future. the vet said, htey cannot figure it out, definitely one testacle is one of a kind and its possible. What do you think?
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