Continued from last week
Testicles usually descend before birth in most dogs. In some, the testicles may descend as late as five to six months of age. If a testicle can be felt at one time but not at another, there is no need for concern. Testicles can retract back up into the groin when a puppy is cold, excited or actively playing. Both testicles should be fully descended before six months of age. Consult your veterinarian if the testicles have not come down by that time.
The testicles should be of similar size and feel rather firm. Since much of the testicles size is due to the sperm-producing tissue, soft or small testicles in the sexually mature dog are likely to be deficient in sperm.
Monorchid dogs, those with only one testicle in the scrotum, may be fertile. However, they should not be used as stud dogs, because the condition is inherited, and you don’t want this deficiency to be passed on to future generations. I strongly advise that such dogs be neutered (castrated). Cryptorchid dogs, those with no testicles in the scrotum, are sterile.