"Cryptorchism in Canaan Dogs
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"Cryptorchism in Canaan Dogs

Dogs
Health & Safety

Canaan Dogs are finding a fanbase in the UK and the breed is Kennel Club recognised although not many puppies are bred and registered every year in the UK. The good news is that their numbers are slowly rising which is not surprising because these charming dogs make wonderful companions and family pets. On the whole, Canaan Dogs are robust and healthy with many living full and happy lives without suffering from any hereditary or congenital disorders. However, some dogs can develop a condition known as cryptorchidism which means that either one or both of their testicles fail to descend as they should into their scrotums.

The condition explained

Should a Canaan Dog suffer from the condition, they retain their testicles in their abdomens although sometimes they can be retained in a dog’s inguinal canal too which is the passage where they should in normal circumstances descend into the scrotum. Occasionally, a testicle can remain just under the skin in what is known as the subcutaneous tissues around a dog’s groin in-between the scrotum and the inguinal canal. Should a testicle be located in the abdomen, it is not possible to feel it when physically examining a dog and as such a vet would need to carry out an ultrasound or take X-rays to locate exactly where it is. In most instances, a dog would only have one testicle retained which is referred to as them suffering from unilateral cryptorchidism.

The causes

A dog’s testes first develop close to their kidneys in their abdomens and would typically descend by the time a dog is 2 months old although sometimes it could be a little later, but rarely later than when they are 6 months old. A retained testicle or testicles can occur in other breeds with some being more predisposed to developing the disorder than others which includes the following:

  • Toy Poodles
  • Pomeranians
  • Yorkshire Terriers

It is worth noting that in around 75% of the time only one testicle is retained whereas in 25% of dogs both testes fail to descend as they should and that studies have found that the right testicle is more likely to be retained than the left one. Research also suggests that cryptorchidism could be an inherited condition that can affect specific lines. However, more research needs to be carried out to find out the exact cause of why some Canaan Dogs and other breeds appear to be more predisposed from suffering from retained testicles.

Symptoms associated with the condition

Dogs suffering from the condition rarely show any signs of being in pain unless there are complications that is. Should both testes be retained, very often a dog is infertile although testosterone is still produced. However, should there be any sort of complication which includes spermatic cord torsion which results in dogs suffering from very severe abdominal pain. Another complication is as follows:

  • Retained testicles can become cancerous

It is also worth noting that specific congenital abnormalities can also occur when a dog suffers from cryptorchidism which includes the following:

  • Patellar luxation
  • A kinked or short tail
  • A life-threatening heart condition known as tetralogy of Fallot
  • Tarsal deformities
  • Microphthalmia
  • Upper eyelid agenesis

Treatment options

Should a Canaan Dog be found to have one or two retained testicles, a vet would recommend neutering them as soon as possible no matter where they are located whether in a dog’s abdomen or inguinal canal.

Prognosis

The prognosis for Canaan Dogs that undergo surgically removing one or two retained testes is very good providing they are removed early bearing in mind that the procedure is not that invasive and the recovery time is relatively short.

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