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Prostatic Neoplasia in the Intact and Castrated Dog: How Dangerous is Castration?

By Magdalena Schrank, Stefano Romagnoli

Category Journal Articles

Elective gonadectomy in the dog is a topic of interest for clinicians, pet-owners, and society. Although canine prostatic neoplasia (CPN) has a low incidence (0.35%), reports of an increased risk for castrated dogs attract attention and cause concern in pet-owners. Our aim is to provide professionals and non-professionals with a detailed description of this possible side effect of gonadectomy in the dog. The mean age at diagnosis of CPN ranges from 8.5 to 11.2 years. Medium to large size breeds are more frequently affected. Symptoms and findings of non-invasive examinations are not pathognomonic, therefore, cytological or histological examinations are needed for diagnosis. Overall, the incidence of metastasis reaches up to 80%, yet lung metastasis reportedly has no negative impact on median survival time (MST). It has been reported that castrated males have a significantly higher MST than intact males. Differences in inclusion criteria for studied populations make a comparison of studies difficult. Citation of odds ratios without consideration of the context of the reference may result in premature conclusions. We conclude that elective gonadectomy of adult male dogs under six years of age cannot be excluded from the veterinary practice due to concern of causing CPN until clear and strong evidence is available.


Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2020
Publication Title Animals
Volume 10
Issue 1
Pages 17
Publisher MDPI
DOI 10.3390/ani10010085
Language English
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal roles
  2. Cancer
  3. Castration
  4. Dogs
  5. open access
  6. Pets and companion animals
  1. open access