Dogs can experience swelling in different parts of their bodies. Unfortunately, this includes their testicles. A variety of reasons can trigger this problem, but how do you treat a dog with a swollen testicle?
The veterinarian is always the best person to call if your dog has swollen testicles. Prompt veterinary attention will save your pet from pain and potential infections.
To help you out, I will share my knowledge as a pet owner when it comes to this health problem. Take note that the points below are purely based on my experience as a pet owner and my limited discussion with my dog’s veterinarian.
Why is my dog’s testicle swollen?
Testicular swelling can be triggered by a slew of causes. The following are the most common scenarios:
- Physical trauma. If a dog falls from elevated spaces, gets hit by a car, or is hit by a blunt object at the rear, it can suffer from testicular swelling. Take note that animal bites on your dog’s balls can also lead to swelling.
- Hormonal imbalances. An imbalance in your dog’s hormones can also trigger swelling in the testicle area. It’s important to get your dog checked, so the vet can diagnose the exact problem.
- Bacterial infection. Bacterial infections like brucellosis can cause testicular swelling. Take note that this is contagious and can be passed from one dog to another. Usually, dogs with brucellosis will also develop a sexually transmitted disease and infections in the reproductive system.
- Prostatitis. The inflammation and swelling of the prostate gland can also lead to testicular swelling among male canines. This is a painful condition that will also make urination unbearable. Aside from testicular swelling, prostatitis can also trigger flu-like symptoms.
- Scrotal dermatitis. The skin on your dog’s scrotum is thin and quite prone to dermatitis. This dermatitis can be triggered by environmental allergens. It can also be a secondary condition.
- Scrotal hernia. Indirect inguinal hernia or scrotal hernia will compress the spermatic vein and artery. In the process, the scrotum will become swollen. Take note that this hernia can also include parts of the small intestine, which will trigger gastrointestinal symptoms.
- Spermatic cord torsion. This condition is rare in dogs, but it can occur on canines with other testicular conditions. Dogs with this condition will suffer from acute pain and flu-like symptoms.
- Sperm granuloma. A sperm granuloma is a lump that forms when the sperm is being forced out of the vas deferens’ cut end. This is often a congenital condition and will only be diagnosed once the dog is in the puberty stage.
- Neoplasia. Neoplasia is an abnormal growth in different parts of a canine’s body. It can be benign or malignant so it’s important to get your dog checked if you suspect this condition. Aside from the testicles, neoplasia is more often formed in the abdomen, breast, lungs, and even the dog’s bones.
How do you treat a dog with a swollen testicle?
The treatment of testicular swelling in dogs depends on what caused it in the first place. This is why bringing your dog to the vet is crucial to ensure that your canine is diagnosed and treated properly.
At the vet’s clinic, your dog will undergo a series of tests, which starts through a physical examination. The vet will check your dog’s testicle color, size, and firmness. You should also expect the veterinarian to palpate your dog’s balls to detect any lumps or abnormal growth.
If the physical examination proved inconclusive, your dog’s vet will perform an ultrasound. This way, the vet can see what’s inside your dog’s testicles.
Aside from that, the vet can also conduct bloodwork to check for your pet’s platelet and blood cell count. This is because an abnormal increase in white blood cells is indicative of ongoing infection in the body.
Further tests will be performed to see if your pet has hormonal imbalances, unusual electrolyte levels, and excess proteins. The vet can also perform a semen evaluation through mycoplasma culture to see if there’s a more serious problem with your dog’s reproductive system.
Most of the time, treatment for swollen testicles includes the use of antibiotics to curb any infection. The worst-case scenario is the castration of one or both the canine’s testicles.
Take note that you should never self-medicate your dog. Doing so will only make its condition worse. By the time you decide to go to the vet, your pet’s condition will be more expensive to treat.
How to prevent testicular problems on your dog
Testicular problems aren’t always preventable as the genetic factor is always at play. But to ensure that your dog won’t suffer from prolonged pain, here are the things you should consider doing:
🐶Get your dog neutered
If you don’t plan to breed your dog, the best course of action is to get it neutered. You can do this even if your pet’s reproductive system is perfectly fine.
Aside from cutting the risk of testicular cancer, neutering will also help calm your male dog. Humping can still happen, but the canine will no longer have an intense drive to pursue female dogs in heat.
Also, neutering your dog is a responsible move. It will reduce the likelihood of new puppies ending up in rescue shelters.
Pet owners and experts also observed that neutered dogs tend to be less aggressive than intact ones. However, neutering must be done at the right time to ensure that you won’t mess up your pet’s hormones. In general, neutering is recommended between the ages of 6 to 9 months.
🐶Schedule regular vet checks
Take note that vet visits aren’t reserved for emergencies. You should also take your dog to the veterinarian for regular checks. This way, the vet can check your pet’s reproductive system and diagnose a problem before it gets worse.
This is a wise move for pet owners who don’t want to get their dogs neutered. It will also ensure that the canine is in the perfect shape to sire puppies.
Depending on your dog’s health, the vet may recommend performing periodic ultrasound and blood work. Nevertheless, this is rarely necessary for most healthy canines.
🐶Always supervise outdoor activities
When taking your dog outdoors, make sure that you keep an eye on him. This is to ensure that your pet won’t get hit by a car, which will cause intense swelling all over its body.
Take note that many outdoor hazards could cause not just testicular swelling, but also other injuries.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can a swollen testicle of a dog heal on its own?
A: If the cause of your dog’s testicular swelling is a minor injury, it will likely heal on its own. However, if the swelling isn’t going away for weeks and is already accompanied by infection and foul smell, you should get your dog tested right away. It’s always best to have your dog’s condition diagnosed properly for immediate veterinary treatment.
Q: Why are my dog’s balls so big?
A: If your dog’s balls are unusually big, you should get them checked for a potential health problem. This is much so if your dog’s testicles are discolored, firmer than usual, and painful. Most of the time, this can be caused by trauma, but other conditions are still possible.
Q: Why do my dog’s balls look raw?
A: If your dog’s scrotum is red and raw, it might be suffering from an infection. Conditions like cancer, brucellosis, dermatitis, granuloma, and so on can be potential culprits. In the end, the only person that can give you the right answer is your dog’s veterinarian.
Q: Why does my dog have red bumps on his balls?
A: The red bumps on your dog’s testicles might be abscesses that are waiting to burst. Also, it might be a case of scrotal dermatitis. Take note that most causes of red bumps are painful and require immediate treatment.
Q: Can dogs get cysts on their balls?
A: Yes, dogs can form cysts on their balls called spermatocele. This causes low-level inflammation that’s often associated with a condition called a sperm granuloma. These cysts are palpable and can be detected by the veterinarian almost right away. But for confirmation, X-ray or ultrasound tests will be needed.
Q: Is one swollen testicle normal for dogs?
A: Whether it’s one or both of your dog’s testicles, it’s important to bring it to the vet. A swollen testicle can be a lot of things, so it’s better to rule out any possible problems. Also, being proactive will save your dog from further pain. It will also save your pocket from expensive vet bills once your dog’s condition gets worse.
How do you treat a dog with a swollen testicle? In this case, the veterinarian is always the best person to contact. Home remedies aren’t advisable since you don’t really know the cause of the swelling.
Proper diagnosis is necessary to ensure that your dog will receive the proper treatment. Only licensed vets should and could do this.