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What is Prescrotal Urethrostomy?

A prescrotal urethrostomy in dogs is a surgical procedure that involves creating a permanent opening for the urethra through the prescrotal region of a male canine. The urethra is part of the urinary system, described as a tube which carries urine from the bladder organ. It, therefore, makes sense that a prescrotal urethrostomy procedure would be used in cases to correct a urine flow obstruction. A complication to the urinary system is a life-threatening condition that, if left untreated, can lead to loss of bladder muscle tone and infections of the urinary tract. An experienced veterinary surgeon will be required to relieve the obstruction caused by scarring, tumors, trauma or stones through the creation of a permanent opening referred to as a urethrostomy. 

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Prescrotal Urethrostomy Procedure in Dogs

Prior to conducting the prescrotal urethrostomy in a dog, the general health of the animal will be assessed to ensure the pet is well enough to complete the surgery. Common preoperative tests for a dog undergoing this type of procedure may include a complete blood cell count, biochemical profile, urinalysis, abdominal ultrasound and possibly, radiographs. 

On the day of the surgery, the canine will be given a pre-sedative drug to provide initial relaxation, followed by a gas anesthetic. An endotracheal tube will be placed, which is a tube that is placed in the windpipe to allow oxygen to reach the patient’s lungs. Once the patient is stabilized, he will be taken to the surgical area where he will be laid in dorsal recumbency and prepped for surgery. The area around the prescrotal area will be shaved, scrubbed with an antimicrobial solution and draped. The veterinary surgeon will make the incision in front of the canine’s scrotum, dissect surrounding tissues and locate the urethra. Once the urethra is located, an incision will be created and the veterinarian will proceed depending on the found cause for the urine flow obstruction. The total surgery time for a prescrotal urethrostomy in dogs is roughly 45 minutes, but can be longer if severe trauma or complications have been noted. 

Efficacy of Prescrotal Urethrostomy in Dogs

Prescrotal urethrostomy in dogs is a highly effective procedure for correcting male dogs with urethral obstructions. The possibility for an obstruction to recur is possible and the procedure may need to be performed more than once. 

Prescrotal Urethrostomy Recovery in Dogs

Following a prescrotal urethrostomy, the dog will be allowed to return home under strict exercise restrictions. An Elizabethan collar will be worn to prevent the dog from manipulating the incision site. If your dog has had non-absorbable sutures, a follow-up appointment will be required to remove the stitch work approximately 10 to 14 days after the date of the surgery. 

Cost of Prescrotal Urethrostomy in Dogs

The average cost of a prescrotal urethrostomy in canines can range from $200 to $2,000. The total cost of the procedure varies depending on the underlying cause of the urinary obstruction. 

Dog Prescrotal Urethrostomy Considerations

Complications in relation to a prescrotal urethrostomy in dogs are rare, but possible. When considering the procedure, dog owners should consider the risk for hemorrhage, dehiscence or wound breakdown, post-operative infection and, in the case of scaring, repeat closure of the urethra. 

Prescrotal Urethrostomy Prevention in Dogs

The need for prescrotal urethrostomy cannot always be prevented, but the best way a pet owner can avoid this type of surgery is to provide a healthy diet paired with regular veterinary check-ups. A dog that is prone to bladder stones can prevent urethra obstructions by sticking to a strict, balanced diet and can treat a current obstruction through prescription medications given by the veterinarian. 

Prescrotal Urethrostomy Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

English Bulldog
5 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Weight Loss

Medication Used


Hello! Boogie had prescrotal urethrostomy surgery 10 days ago, and is still bleeding. We took him home after 9 days of post surgery care. The biggest issue is defecating - thats when squirts of blood coming out of incision sight. It also gets worst in the morning - every time he gets up the blood starts dripping. Is there a way to make it heal faster, what are the complications associated with hemorrhage? Will it just take longer time to heal, or does it put him in some other risks? Will he more likely get infection because of it?
Also, I noticed a lump on his "armpit" (outer side by front "elbow') where the lymph nodes are. Does that mean he has infection?
Thank you!

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3320 Recommendations

Some bleeding and dripping is normal after surgery and this type of surgery takes a while to heal; however if you are seeing blood squirt out during defecation, this is something to visit your Veterinarian immediately for. There is no quick way to heal, although after ten days it should be well on its way; keeping the area clean is the most important. But go back to your Veterinarian if there is blood squirting out. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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