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Hi everyone, I'm wondering if anyone has had this situation before. Our 7yr old male is recovering from prostatitis. It's the first time he's had it and it came on quickly. He had to be sedated in order to be checked as he wouldn't allow the vet to do a rectal examination (he has always hated his bottom being touched!). He's recovering well and we've been advised to get him castrated asap. He is not an aggressive boy but is sensitive and has been attacked several times in the past usually by other full males.  With other intact male dogs, I now know the regulars in the park so if we see one where we know there could be an issue, I always put him on his lead just in case there are a few handbags at dawn. Our previous vet said that he is a nervous dog due to being attacked before and that we shouldn't have him neutered as it will make him more nervous and the potential for him to become aggressive could be heightened. We also have a 4 yr old make Irish Setter. He is very sweet and looks up to the older dog, allowing him to be boss, allowing him to be served his food first and eat any treats first, and accepts being told off if he's getting too boisterous. My concern over having the castration is not just about the coat being wrecked (health is more important than vanity) but I'm concerned about the current relationship between our two boys being disrupted and the harmony in the house being changed as the less dominant dog will be the one with more testosterone, plus the potential for his personality to change radically. Has anyone seen any changes in relationship between their male dogs where the dominant one has been done and the other hasn't been done? Thanks for your thoughts.

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My opinion always was, and remains that I would never do this unless it was medically required to save his life! I'm quite sure from reading your post that you don't want to do it, so my advice is don't! I simply don't believe in putting a dog through something unnecessary and I don't always take a vet's opinion on things!

Thanks James. You're right, my husband and I really don't want to castrate and there is no link between prostate cancer and prostatitis but we don't want him to have to go through sedation and lots of bouts of pain/antibiotics if it keeps reoccurring. Our thoughts are to leave alone and see if it happens again and then make a decision. However in the meantime the future concern is the relationship between the two boys and his own sense of confidence / 'emotional stability' - if dogs have such as thing (and I suspect they do - just like humans!). Thanks again.

Hi Jayne sorry for the delay !

we went through a prostate problem recently with Oberon (7years old!), last june. You are right there is no link with cancer, but he had a prostatis attack , in just two days he went from showing one occasional blood drop now and then to bleeding full time (at the point that I had to follow him around the house cleaning) from his penis. we rushed to the hospital and the prostate was 8cm long (should be ~3ish) and with bad (=dark and irregularly shaped) cysts inside. the only option was (sob) to castrate him immediately, After castration , just in few days since the operation the prostate began shrinking . we did 3 more US at regular interval, to monitor it, and now is 2.5cm and the cysts inside disappeared and resolve themselves without drainage.  To be honest, I didnt want at all to castrate Oberon, but all his symptoms disappeared and it was the best and only thing to do in his case.. no other option..

i posted a discussion `blood spots` when this happened, but let me know if you wish some more info on our experience since at that time I was a bit hectic ;)

regarding the behavior I have not seen changes in him or in other dogs respect to him. I think at this stage the character is fully formed (once he has also shown interest for a female on  heat, as well, but maybe is just coincidental ; ).

I see him much more playful, for sure, to the point that I start wondering if he was in pain when jumping or running (he didnt show signs, but for sure now he is jumping more..). the only difference is that the urge to mark his terrain with pees is less: he does a long wee instead of several ones. I guess the instinct has change, but to be honest is not bad ; )

regarding the coat: has changed for sure, but not (yet) on the wholly and orange type. I am still monitoring: for now is less dense (he has lost a lot of fur) and bit more curly. but still same color and shiny so ... i cant say what is happening, let's see.. good luck and let us know how things will go!!! all the best silvia

Hi Silvia, thank you so much for taking the time to respond. I did see your post and was interested to see Oberon (great name by the way) was exactly the same age. Red is feeling so much better now but we are keeping a close eye on him. And at the merest hint of it happening again then it's got be be the chop I'm afraid. I know you may think we should do it straight away but we just want to be certain that we are not rushing into anything. I'll keep you posted and thanks again. Jayne

Hi Jayne

absolutely no !!! I think if there is a chance that the situation resolves itselves is much better if an IS is not  castrated. In our case we had no choice: a) Oberon was bleeding A LOT, b) when the vet visited him and  pushed a particular part of his body, nead the hip, Oberon gasped (= there was the pain) while he was absolutely normal if the movement was done on the other side, and c) the two cystis were really bad and the prostate was 3times the normal size.. In the end, we had no choice really, but as you see from my other posts i am still moaning that the coat seems on the verge to change and monitoring him - let's see, it will be sad of course. Apart from that, at least I can tell you that we saw no change at all in the behaviour with other dogs (so maybe this can help you with your other worry, regarding the interaction with the other dog...) .. 

as i said, Oberon -if any- is even more playful and the character is the same : )

good luck, hope it was just an isolated episode !!!!!!! cheers


I hope it won’t happen again. I’d hate to lose his lovely fur. They did an ultrasound on him an no cysts etc so fingers crossed it was an isolated incident.

Oberon in the Swiss Bernese Alps two weeks ago.. it was very cold and he was wearing a jumper JJJJ

so you cant see much of the coat, but for now is not bad - let's see : )

best of luck to Red, I am glad he 's feeling better : ))


oh wow, what a handsome boy! His coat looks great. I'd love to take ours away more but our youngest boy is so naughty and runs off after deer, pheasants etc and when we moved to the coast they both loved running along the beach together but we had to put a stop to it, as the naughty youngest used to chase seagulls up the cliff faces and ran off over the top! He always comes back but it's just not safe now and we get so many disapproving looks! Plus the farmer threatened him once too. We unfortunately have to take them to the same country park which is away from roads and cliffs and the same beach which has no cliffs - which is a bit boring for us and a shame for Red as he knows how to behave. They still get a great run, but the idea of jetting off to the Swiss Alps with them  would be fab.





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