Canine Urethral Prolapse is a health condition characterized by extrusion of the tail end segment of the urethra through the external urethral opening. It occurs most commonly in English bulldogs and Boston terriers.
Young to middle aged male dogs are more prone to urethral prolapse.
The condition is thought to be idiopathic, but can also be cause by
- Increased pressure inside the abdomen
- Abnormal development of the urethra
- Prolonged sexual excitement
- Urinary tract infection
- Urethral calculi
Clinical signs may be asymptomatic but may include:
- Bleeding from the urethra when not urinating
- Blood in the urine
- Frequent urination
- Straining to urinate
- Urinary blockage
- A red, pea shaped structure visible at the tip of the penis
The diagnosis is usually made based of history, clinical signs and visualization of the prolapsed. Additional tests used in the diagnosis of urethral prolapse include:
- Abdominal radiographs
- Abdominal ultrasound
- Urine culture
Treatment may not be required if the prolapsed urethra is asymptomatic or only associated with occasional bleeding. Castration is recommended in all cases prior to attempting surgical removal of the prolapsed tissue. A Small prolapse can be treated by reducing the prolapse, placing a urinary catheter and temporary purse string suture. This procedure may be sufficient, but surgical correction is the treatment of choice in most cases as there is less recurrence. Urethropexy involves surgical resection of the prolapsed part of the urethra with a urinary catheter in place. Post-operatively, an Elizabethan collar is placed to prevent licking of the wound. Urinary tract infections are be treated with antibiotics according to culture and sensitivity results. Prognosis is generally good depending on the chronicity of the condition.