bizarre neutering behavior - Answered by Dr. Van Lienden
I had both my 5 yr old male goldens neutered 9 days ago. One has a swollen scrotum as a result, which the vet said is normal when he rechecked him. Everything else was fine until yesterday when my other golden started going nuts over his brother with the swollen scrotum. He sniffs the scrotum--and his pee on the grass--and then goes crazy like his brother is a female in heat. Panting, whining, and trying to hump him. He NEVER did this before. Ever. I can't even leave them alone together. I have never heard of such a thing. Has anyone? I am at my wits end. Is this what neutering can do? The vet didn't detect any signs of infection, but said that sometimes a scent can be given off by something else going on in the dog and the other dog may be confusing it with a the female hormone. Because of the truly bizarre behavior exhibited by my one dog, he gave me antibiotics in case there was an undetected infection. My boys used to be best friend and now I can't even leave them in the same room. Has anyone ever heard of this kind of reaction?! Please tell me it is not permanent!
I would go back to the vet, or get a second opinion. I have never heard of such behaviour after a neutering...:shrug:
<i>"I have never heard of such behaviour after a neutering"</i>
Well, now you have : )
Actually today I am feeling cautiously hopeful that this will pass. The dog with the swollen scrotum seems to be improving, and the crazed desire of the other dog "seems" to be waning. I think what I found so frustrating is the lack of information about complications on neutering. It is almost like everyone is afraid to talk about it for fear it will be a blemish on the practice. Complications DO happen. It is better to talk about them so pet owners are prepared for them. The possible swelling of the scrotum for instance, was never mentioned. As far as my other dog suddenly becoming a sex craved Romeo, I do need to mention that he has the best "nose" of any dog I have ever owned. He tracks every step a bird takes in our yard. And so if the vet's theory was correct, he would very likely be able to catch the scent of something wrong with our other dog, and possibly misinterpret it.
Another theory I had was that the testosterone levels of "crazed dog" hadn't dropped yet, while the other dogs had and he was no longer sensing that he was another male. But when I asked the vet about testosterone and how long it took to get out of the system, he said instantly but then back tracked and said he didn't really know for sure. And then I read a comment from an online article from a vet who said that it can takes weeks or months. Information like this might be very helpful to know, but there doesn't seem to be a definitive answer.
Anyway, I thank you very much for your reply.
Swelling is not uncommon after neuter surgery and your vet certainly should have warned you about that. It is usually gone within 2-3 weeks.
What I have been told is that testosterone levels actually can peak after surgery, so a dog that was normally well-behaved can start jumping, mounting etc. We see this infrequently, but it does happen. Testosterone levels slowly go down and level off in 3-4 weeks. Hang in there, and you should see improvement in your dog's behavior!
What I have been told is that testosterone levels actually can peak after surgery[/QUOTE]
This is very interesting--and enlightening--and would certainly explain our experience. Do you work at a vet's office? I'd love to have some information to pass along to my own vet since he said he had never seen this before.
Our sweet boy seems to be himself again. By last night his panting and interest in our other dog seemed to be gone--which is a huge relief. I am also wondering if the anitbiotics the vet gave my other dog kicked in. It could have been we were dealing with a double whammy: peaked testosterone levels plus an infection giving off false signals.
Thank you very much for your input. If anyone else I know ever goes through two male dogs being neutered, I will pass along this very helpful insight.
This is an unusual presentation. Some urinary tract/anal sac infections can mimic certain pheromone odors. Another possibility is that the production of testosterone has been reduced by neutering (castration) and this allows the estrogens produced by the adrenal glands to predominate.
The adrenal glands produce a combination of male and female hormones in both sexes. I can not answer if this is a permanent situation for your two dogs, my impression is that it should clear up in four to six weeks, and simply because of habituation.
Dr. Van Lienden
Dr. Raymond Van Lienden DVM
The Animal Clinic of Clifton
12702 Chapel Road, Clifton
Virginia, U.S.A. 20124
[QUOTE]Do you work at a vet's office?[/QUOTE]
I work at an animal shelter. We work with 3 different vet's offices, and we've had hundreds of animals spayed/neutered since I've been working at my job (and we've had almost no major complications with these surgeries!)
To be perfectly honest, I can't remember which vet told us this theory, but we have seen a lot of young male dogs that have an intense increase in energy and inappropriate behaviours following surgery, and they've all gone back to normal after 3 weeks. It's very interesting!
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