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One small testicle.

Species: Dog
Breed: St Bernard
Age: 3-6 months
I have a 25 week old male pup who had 2 normal testicles at 8 weeks old. At about 10 weeks, one of his testicles became very swollen. My vet suspected he had been nipped by one of his litter mates and prescribed a one week course of anti-biotics and anti-inflammatories. This appeared to do the trick and the swelling subsided.
Now aged 15 weeks, one testicle is noticeably smaller than the other. I think the small one was not the one that was bitten/nipped but am not certain.
The reason for my concern is that he is a show prospect but will need to have 2 "normal" testicles.
Do you think this problem will correct itself or could the inflammation have done some permanent damage ?


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

What an interesting question! I don't think I have ever seen a case like this in 12 years of practice.

It's possible that the testicle that was injured or infected previously has been damaged. If the blood supply to this testicle has been damaged then it will not grow to its normal size.

It is not uncommon, however, for a puppy to have one testicle smaller than the other and then eventually after a few more months it can catch up in size.

There is controversy amongst veterinary specialists as to whether or not having one testicle smaller than the other is a genetic trait.

I'm not a conformation expert, so I won't be able to tell you whether the judge would dock him for having a smaller testicle. But, I can tell you that it's unlikely to affect his health at all.

Dr. Marie.



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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Thanks I can't be 100% sure but I think the inflammed testicle is the one that now appears normal and the other one appears small. I think I will leave well alone for now and check again in a few more weeks.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Interesting. I think your plan is a good one. There really is no medical reason for the injured testicle to be larger. If it was sore we could say that maybe it is abscessed, but this should be very obvious.

Let's hope it is just a slight variation that will normal out in time!



Customer reply:

Thanks I can't be 100% sure but I think the inflammed testicle is the one that now appears normal and the other one appears small. I think I will leave well alone for now and check again in a few more weeks.


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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.