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How to Make a Dog’s Testicle Drop: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Make a Dog's Testicle Drop: A Step by Step Guide

Dog owners may not know this, but canine testicles essentially drop from the abdomen down into the scrotum soon after birth. Some male dogs, however, may develop undescended testicles, which can cause a series of health problems down the line if left unaddressed. In this article, we’ll explore the process of canine testicle descent and the importance of it happening correctly.

We’ll walk you through the steps for checking and, if necessary, making a dog’s testicle drop. Read on for a comprehensive step-by-step guide.

Understanding Canine Testicle Development

Before we dive into the specifics of making a dog’s testicle drop, let’s take a moment to understand how it develops in the first place. Puppies are born with their testicles up in their abdomen. These testicles are not visible from the outside of the puppy’s body. As the puppy grows, the testicles begin to develop and make their way down into the scrotum.

This descent is important for two reasons: not only do properly descended testicles help identify a dog’s sex, they’re also exposed to temperatures that are a few degrees cooler than their internal body temperature. This drop in temperature is critical for sperm production; overheated testicles can lead to infertility or other reproductive problems.

The Stages of Testicle Descent in Dogs

There are typically two stages of testicle descent in male dogs. In the first stage, which can happen soon after birth or by three weeks of age, the testicles drop from the abdomen into the top of the scrotum. During this stage, the testicles are still small and not fully developed. In the second stage, which can happen between six weeks and six months of age, the testicles descend the remainder of the way to the bottom of the scrotum. During this stage, the testicles continue to grow and develop until they reach their full size. Both stages are necessary for proper testicle development and function.

Factors Affecting Testicle Descent

Several factors can affect testicle descent in dogs. Genetics plays a significant role in determining when a dog’s testicles will drop. Smaller breeds of dogs tend to drop their testicles sooner, while larger breeds can take longer. Hormonal imbalances can also affect testicle descent. Testosterone, a male sex hormone, is necessary for proper testicle development and function. Nutritional deficiencies and imbalances can also play a role in testicle descent. A diet that is lacking in certain nutrients can inhibit proper testicle development and function. It’s important for dog owners to pay attention to any potential factors that may be inhibiting their dog’s testicle drop.

When to Be Concerned About Undescended Testicles

If a dog’s testicles don’t properly descend, they may be considered undescended. An undescended testicle can cause problems with a dog’s reproductive health down the line. A dog’s testicles should have descended fully by six months of age, so owners should keep an eye on this timeframe. If you suspect your dog’s testicles have not dropped within this timeframe, it’s important to seek professional help to address the issue. Your veterinarian can perform an examination and determine if there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

In conclusion, understanding the development of a dog’s testicles is important for their overall reproductive health. Proper testicle descent is necessary for sperm production and identifying a dog’s sex. Factors such as genetics, body size, hormonal imbalances, and nutrition can all affect testicle descent. If you suspect your dog’s testicles have not dropped within the appropriate timeframe, it’s important to seek professional help to address the issue.

The Importance of Testicle Descent in Dogs

As we mentioned earlier, there are a few good reasons why proper testicle descent is important for dogs. Firstly, it’s important for accurately identifying a dog’s sex, which is relevant information for health concerns like veterinary treatments. Secondly, properly descended testicles promote optimal sperm production by exposing the testicles to cooler temperatures. Lastly, undescended testicles can cause a variety of reproductive health issues in male dogs.

However, the importance of testicle descent goes beyond just reproductive health. Proper testicle descent can also affect a dog’s behavior. Dogs with undescended testicles may exhibit aggressive or dominant behavior, which can make them difficult to train and handle. This is because undescended testicles can cause an imbalance in testosterone levels, leading to behavioral issues.

Health Implications of Undescended Testicles

One of the primary health implications of undescended testicles is an increased risk of testicular cancer. Testicular cancer is already relatively common in dogs, and dogs with undescended testicles have a much higher risk of developing it. In addition, undescended testicles can cause torsion, which is a painful twisting of the testicle that can lead to tissue damage and even death of the testicle. Dogs with undescended testicles are also at greater risk for inflammation and infections, which can cause discomfort and require veterinary treatment.

Breeding Considerations for Dogs with Undescended Testicles

Since male dogs with undescended testicles are infertile, they cannot breed, and they cannot sire litters. This can be a disappointment for breeders who were hoping to use a particular dog for breeding purposes. However, it’s important to select appropriate breeding pairs to avoid health issues and decrease the chances of undescended testicles appearing in future generations.

It’s also important to note that breeding dogs with undescended testicles is not only unethical, but it’s also illegal in some countries. In the United States, the Animal Welfare Act prohibits breeding dogs with hereditary health issues, which includes undescended testicles. Breeders who violate these laws can face fines and even imprisonment.

Legal and Ethical Concerns in Dog Breeding

It’s also important for breeders to be aware of the laws and ethical concerns surrounding dog breeding. Breeding dogs with hereditary health issues can contribute to the spread of those issues, as well as lead to unnecessary suffering for the dogs involved. Breeders should prioritize the health and well-being of their animals, and seek to avoid contributing to overpopulation and genetic problems.

Furthermore, breeders should consider the impact of their breeding practices on the wider dog population. Overbreeding can lead to an excess of dogs in shelters and rescues, which can result in overcrowding and euthanasia. Responsible breeding practices can help to reduce the number of dogs in need of homes and improve the overall health of the dog population.

Consulting a Veterinarian

If you’re concerned that your dog’s testicles haven’t descended as they should have, the first step is to consult with a veterinarian. A veterinarian can conduct an exam and perform a variety of diagnostic tests to help determine the issue and plan a course of treatment. It’s important to seek professional help as soon as possible as undescended testicles can lead to serious health issues like testicular cancer and infertility.

When you take your dog to the vet, they will likely conduct a physical exam to check for any signs of swelling or inflammation in the scrotum. They may also perform a rectal exam to check for the presence of the testicles in the abdomen. If the testicles are not palpable, your vet may recommend diagnostic tests like ultrasounds, X-rays, and blood tests to assess hormone levels. These tests can help determine the location of the testicles and whether they are functional or not.

When to Seek Professional Help

As we mentioned earlier, if a dog’s testicles have not fully descended by six months of age, it’s important to seek professional help. However, there are other signs to look out for that may indicate a problem with your dog’s testicles. For example, if you notice any lumps or bumps in your dog’s testicles, it’s important to get them checked out by a vet. These could be signs of a tumor or other growth. Additionally, if your dog is exhibiting abnormal behavior like excessive licking or discomfort in the area, it’s important to bring them in for an exam.

Diagnostic Tests for Undescended Testicles

Diagnostic tests for undescended testicles can include ultrasounds, X-rays, and blood tests to assess hormone levels. During an ultrasound, high-frequency sound waves are used to create images of the inside of the body. This can help the veterinarian locate the testicles and determine their size and condition. X-rays can also be used to locate the testicles and assess their condition. Blood tests can be used to check hormone levels, which can indicate whether the testicles are functional or not.

Treatment Options for Undescended Testicles

Treatment for undescended testicles generally involves surgery, specifically a procedure called orchiopexy. Orchiopexy involves surgically repositioning the undescended testicle(s) into the scrotum and securing them in place. This procedure may be performed as early as six months of age, or earlier if there are other problems like inflammation or infection in the area. In some cases, if the testicle is non-functional or there is a high risk of cancer, it may need to be removed entirely.

After the surgery, your veterinarian will likely recommend limiting your dog’s activity for a period of time to allow for proper healing. They may also prescribe pain medication to manage any discomfort your dog may experience. It’s important to follow your veterinarian’s post-operative instructions carefully to ensure a smooth recovery for your furry friend.

At-Home Monitoring and Care

After surgery, it’s important to monitor your dog at home and care for them appropriately to ensure a safe and healthy recovery. Below are some tips for at-home monitoring and care:

Regularly Checking Your Dog’s Testicles

After your dog has undergone surgery for testicular cancer or neutering, it’s important to monitor their testicles to ensure they remain in their proper location. Checking your dog’s testicles once a month can help you catch any potential issues early. You can do this by gently feeling for their testicles and making sure they are both present and in the correct position. If you notice anything concerning, such as swelling or lumps, it’s important to seek veterinary help right away as this could be a sign of infection or other complications.

Providing a Healthy Environment for Testicle Descent

In addition to getting professional help and keeping an eye on your dog’s testicles, you can also provide a healthy environment for testicle descent. This includes making sure your dog has a proper diet with all necessary nutrients, as well as keeping them at a healthy weight. Obesity can lead to a variety of health issues, including difficulty with testicle descent. Therefore, it’s important to ensure your dog is getting enough exercise and is not overeating.

Furthermore, it’s important to keep your dog’s living environment clean and free of any potential hazards. This includes removing any toxic plants, chemicals or other dangerous items that your dog could accidentally ingest. Providing a safe and healthy environment can help prevent any unnecessary health issues from arising.

Supporting Your Dog’s Overall Health

Lastly, supporting your dog’s overall health is important for their testicle health and the prevention of other health concerns. This includes regular vet check-ups, proper vaccinations, and monitoring their activity levels. Regular check-ups can help catch any potential health issues early on, and vaccinations can help prevent a variety of illnesses. Additionally, ensuring your dog gets enough exercise and mental stimulation can help keep them healthy and happy.

Overall, providing proper at-home monitoring and care for your dog after surgery is crucial for their recovery and long-term health. By regularly checking their testicles, providing a healthy environment, and supporting their overall health, you can help ensure your dog lives a happy and healthy life.

Surgical Intervention for Undescended Testicles

Undescended testicles, also known as cryptorchidism, is a common condition in male dogs where one or both testicles fail to descend into the scrotum. This can cause a variety of health issues, including an increased risk of testicular cancer and infertility. While some cases of cryptorchidism may resolve on their own, surgical intervention is often necessary to correct the issue and prevent further complications.

The Process of Canine Orchiopexy

Orchiopexy is a surgical procedure that involves bringing the undescended testicle down into the scrotum and securing it in place. The procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia and involves the following steps:

  1. The first step in orchiopexy is to make an incision in the dog’s flank. This allows the surgeon access to the inguinal canal where the undescended testicle is located.
  2. Using careful dissection techniques, the surgeon will locate the undescended testicle and gently bring it down through the inguinal canal and into the scrotum.
  3. Once the testicle is successfully in place, the surgeon will secure it in place with one or two stitches to prevent it from retracting back up into the abdomen.
  4. After closing the incision with stitches, your dog will be monitored closely as they recover from anesthesia and the surgical procedure.

Post-Surgery Care and Recovery

Post-surgery care is crucial for ensuring a smooth and healthy recovery for your dog. Your veterinarian will provide you with detailed instructions for caring for your dog at home after surgery, which may include:

  • Ensuring a stress-free environment for your dog to promote healing and reduce the risk of complications
  • Administering appropriate pain medications to keep your dog comfortable during the recovery process
  • Limiting your dog’s activity level to prevent them from injuring themselves or disrupting the surgical site
  • Monitoring your dog closely for any signs of complications, such as excessive swelling, bleeding, or discharge from the surgical site

Most dogs recover well from orchiopexy surgery and are able to resume their normal activities within a few weeks. However, it’s important to follow your veterinarian’s instructions carefully to ensure the best possible outcome for your furry friend.

Potential Complications and Risks

While orchiopexy is generally considered a safe and effective procedure, there are potential complications and risks associated with any surgical procedure. These can include:

  • Surgical site infections, which can cause pain, swelling, and fever
  • Excessive bleeding, which may require additional surgery or blood transfusions
  • Issues with anesthesia, such as allergic reactions or respiratory problems

If you’re considering orchiopexy surgery for your dog, it’s important to discuss any potential risks with your veterinarian and weigh the benefits against the potential complications. With proper care and monitoring, most dogs are able to recover well from this procedure and enjoy a long and healthy life.

Preventing Undescended Testicles in Future Generations

Finally, it’s important to take steps to prevent undescended testicles from appearing in future generations of dogs. This includes:

Responsible Breeding Practices

As we mentioned earlier, responsible breeding practices are important for preventing reproductive health issues in dogs. This includes avoiding breeding dogs with hereditary health issues, following ethical breeding practices, and prioritizing the health and wellbeing of the animals involved.

Early Detection and Intervention

Early detection and intervention can help prevent undescended testicles from causing health problems down the line. This includes regularly monitoring your dog’s testicles and seeking veterinary care if you suspect any issues.

Educating Others About Canine Testicle Health

Educating others about canine testicle health can help spread awareness of the importance of proper testicle descent and the risks associated with undescended testicles. Share this article with others to help spread awareness and knowledge about this important topic.


Canine testicle health is an important topic for all dog owners to understand. Proper testicle descent is critical for reproductive health, as well as identifying a dog’s sex. If you suspect your dog’s testicles haven’t descended as they should have, it’s important to seek professional help. Orchiopexy is a common and effective treatment for undescended testicles, and responsible breeding practices can help prevent these issues from arising in future generations. Remember to keep an eye on your dog’s testicles, provide a healthy environment, and seek veterinary care if necessary to ensure your dog’s reproductive health.

shawn min


Shawn is a pup fanatic with over 10 years in the pet business. He knows the in's and out's of doggie training, habits, and even rescue missions! When they're not busy cooking up a storm of dog-friendly recipes, he's most likely out adventuring with his own pack.

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