+1 Recommend
0 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Correlation of neuter status and expression of heritable disorders

      Read this article at

          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.



          Gonadectomy, or neutering, is a very common surgery for dogs having many positive effects on behavior, health, and longevity. There are also certain risks associated with neutering including the development of orthopedic conditions, cognitive decline, and a predisposition to some neoplasias. This study was designed specifically to identify if a correlation exists between neuter status and inherited conditions in a large aggregate cohort of dogs representing many different breeds.


          Neutered dogs were at less risk for early and congenital conditions (aortic stenosis, early onset cataracts, mitral valve disease, patent ductus arteriosus, portosystemic shunt, and ventricular septal defect) than intact dogs. Neutering was also associated with reduced risk of dilated cardiomyopathy and gastric dilatation volvulus in males. Neutering was significantly associated with an increased risk for males and females for cancers (hemangiosarcoma, hyperadrenocorticism, lymphoma, mast cell tumor, and osteosarcoma), ruptured anterior cruciate ligament and epilepsy. Intervertebral disk disease was associated with increased risk in females only. For elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, lens luxation, and patellar luxation neutering had no significant effect on the risk for those conditions. Neutering was associated with a reduced risk of vehicular injury, a condition chosen as a control.


          In this retrospective study, several conditions showed an increased risk associated with neutering whereas other conditions were less likely to be expressed in neutered dogs. The complexity of the interactions between neutering and inherited conditions underscores the need for reflective consultation between the client and the clinician when considering neutering. The convenience and advantages of neutering dogs that will not be included in a breeding program must be weighed against possible risk associated with neutering.

          Electronic supplementary material

          The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s40575-017-0044-6) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

          Related collections

          Most cited references 64

          • Record: found
          • Abstract: not found
          • Article: not found

          Inference from Iterative Simulation Using Multiple Sequences

            • Record: found
            • Abstract: not found
            • Article: not found

            Prior distributions for variance parameters in hierarchical models (comment on article by Browne and Draper)

             Andrew Gelman (2006)
              • Record: found
              • Abstract: found
              • Article: not found

              Prevalence of obesity in dogs examined by Australian veterinary practices and the risk factors involved.

              A study was undertaken to determine the prevalence of obesity in dogs examined by veterinary practices across Australia, and to determine the risk factors involved; 1700 practices were asked to complete a veterinarian opinion survey, and of the 428 practices that responded, 178 were selected to complete an RSPCA Australia Pet Obesity Questionnaire, together with additional practices selected by Australian State and Territory RSPCA societies. This questionnaire was sent to a total of 209 practices which were asked to record details of eligible dogs, and the reason why they had been examined during the previous month. Fifty-two (24.9 per cent) of the practices responded and provided data on 2661 dogs, of which 892 (33.5 per cent) were overweight and 201 (7.6 per cent) were obese. A further 112 dogs (4.2 per cent) were classified as thin or very thin, but these were excluded from subsequent analyses. Of the remaining 2549 dogs, approximately half were female and 1905 (74.7 per cent) were neutered. The dogs' weight category was influenced by several factors. Breed influenced the importance of sex and neutering as risk factors. The prevalence of overweight and obese dogs combined was 41 per cent; the prevalence increased with age up to about 10 years old, and then declined. Rural and semirural dogs were more at risk of obesity than urban and suburban dogs.

                Author and article information

                530-752-1252 ,
                Canine Genet Epidemiol
                Canine Genet Epidemiol
                Canine Genetics and Epidemiology
                BioMed Central (London )
                26 May 2017
                26 May 2017
                : 4
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 9684, GRID grid.27860.3b, Department of Animal Science, , University of California, ; One Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616 USA
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 9684, GRID grid.27860.3b, Department of Population Health & Reproduction, School of Veterinary Medicine, , University of California, ; Davis, CA 95616 USA
                © The Author(s). 2017

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2017

                neuter, dog, inherited disease


                Comment on this article