Dog ate chocolate?

ask a vet

Chemical castration of dogs.

Species: Dog
Breed: Labrador Retriever
Age: Less than 3 mon
What would be the benefits of Zinc neutering using Zinc Gluconate offered by Ark Sciences? Is it worth waiting for a few months to avoid surgical castration?




Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

The product that you're talking about is one formerly called Neutersol and now called Esterisol. The idea of Esterisol is that it is a chemical that is injected into the testicles in order to produce castration. There are pros and cons to this as compared to surgical castration:

Pros
  • A full anesthetic is not needed. (Most times deep sedation is given).

  • It may be less expensive than surgery (provided that there are no complications).



Cons
  • The injection can be painful. (However, if proper sedation is given this is reduced. Some vets have reported that dogs actually tolerate the injections well.

  • There is a higher risk of complications as compared to surgical castration. Some dogs will get extreme swelling of the testicles or scrotal ulcers afterwards and many of these dogs require surgery in order to remove the entire scrotum. I read of several cases of shelter vets who had used this method of castration and ended up euthanizing dogs who had severe reactions.

  • It takes a few months to weeks for the testicles to completely shrink.

  • Dogs who have had neutersol injection do not have as low testosterone levels as surgically neutered dogs. Because of this we don't know if chemical castration will have the same benefits in reducing prostate problems and other testosterone related issues later on in life.

  • One study showed that many dogs who had chemical castration were later on neutered surgically because they had too many "male" behaviors such as mounting and peeing on things.



In doing some research for you I found out that Neutersol was taken off the market a few years ago. In 2009 the product came back on the market again under the name EsterioSol.

In my opinion there may be some benefit for vets to use this method of castration in situations where surgery is just not possible. For example, in third world countries or in remote places overrun with stray dogs. In these situations the benefit of being able to castrate hundreds of dogs in a short period of time probably outweighs the risk of the side effects.

However, I would not recommend it for any of my patients.

*ADDED*
I was recently contacted by Ark Sciences about my answer to this question. They directed me to this FAQ on the use of Zinc Gluconate for nonsurgical castration. I'm linking to it here so that readers of my website can read their information as well.

I applaud Ark Sciences for continuing to develop and approve a product that will be quite helpful in a number of situations. At this point, I don't feel comfortable recommending the product to my clients, but I can see places where it could be helpful (such as high volume shelters and remote communities).

The FAQ discusses a number of things that can be done to reduce the risk of a reaction. They state this, "As new organizations embark on the use of Zinc Gluconate neutralized with Arginine, they should expect to treat 1-2 dogs with topical ointment for every 100 dogs sterilized and handle one scrotal ulceration needing scrotal ablation and possible castration." In my opinion, 1 scrotal ablation for every 100 dogs is too much, and as such I won't be recommending this product to my clients at this time.

I will be keeping an eye on the product though.

---This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.---


Do you have a pet website? Interested in learning more about SEO for Wix?


Check out our dog age calculator and cat age calculator.

Want to receive pet coupons, vet advice and info on new pet products in your inbox?

* indicates required

We'll only send you great stuff, never spam. Unsubscribe any time.

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.

Search for similar questions:

ask a vet

Popular questions...

Irregular heart rhythm. MY 12 year old lurcher ran into a car and broke a leg and a few ribs he is in... (8949 views)

Thin after back injury. A friend found a dog years ago on the side of the road with an broken back. Break... (11703 views)

Dog suddenly paralyzed. My beloved Pug, Newt, passed away last October.She was 12 years old. She developed a... (45229 views)

Cat losing weight Hello, I took my 15 year old neutered cat to the vet the other day because he was... (13338 views)

Swollen ear flap. i have a dog named shiloh and something is wrong with his ear and i just need to... (11747 views)

Shaking after grooming. Millie is an otherwise healthy 8 year old Bijon Poo. Don't know if this is related,... (40933 views)

Questions about anesthesia Hi my name is Jazmin. I'm currently in college now in vet tech school. i have a... (7225 views)

Hind end pain in beagle. I'm wondering if we need a set of fresh eyes about this ongoing situation, perhaps a... (19215 views)

Peeing in house. We live in a 2 story 5 bedroom house. I have a male 14 year old pure bred Ragdoll... (8863 views)

Contagious diarrhea? please bare with me as this is gonna be kind of long... about 2 weeks ago i had... (7637 views)

See all questions...

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.