Before being born, a puppy’s testicles are located within the abdomen. The testicles will start to descend into the abdomen upon birth and complete its descent when the puppy is approximately two months old.
An undescended testicle is usually non-functional and underdeveloped. Removal of this underdeveloped testicle is usually indicated to prevent future problems, particularly cancer. The testicle may still be located within the abdomen or it may be embedded in the tissues of the inguinal region.
Cryptorchidism is believed to be congenital. Thus the abnormality could be passed on to the offspring if the dog is allowed to get pregnant and give birth to puppies.
A surgical procedure known as Bilateral Castration involves the removal of both testes. This procedure is highly recommended in all dogs with Cryptorchidism.
Oftentimes, the presence of Cryptorchidism remains undetected until a healthy young dog is brought by its owner to the veterinarian for castration. It is often diagnosed when palpation of the scrotum yields the presence of only one testicle or the absence of both testicles.
Other steps that can be taken to accurately diagnose the condition include an abdominal ultrasound and measurement of blood testosterone levels. Laboratory tests are usually not indicated.
The recommended line of treatment for Cryptorchidism involves castration. An incision is made, the location of which, depends on the location (whether inguinal or abdominal region) of the undescended testicle. As for the normally descended testicle, it is removed using the regular surgical method.
Home care in the form of supportive therapy is very important for your pet to quickly recover from the surgical procedure. It is best to keep him indoors and prevent him from getting excited. The next two weeks after surgery is very important for your dog’s recovery, thus “rough-housing” should never be allowed.
Care should also be taken that the surgical incision will not be licked or chewed by your pet. Be quick to spot signs of swelling, redness, or the presence of any discharges. An Elizabethan collar may be fitted around your beagle’s neck to prevent him from licking or chewing on the incision. The surgical sutures are usually removed within 10-14 days post-surgery.