Cryptorchidism: An uncommon disorder

Sa'ida Maryam

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Hi to everyone onTCS
I hope to start a thread that will foster a discussion about the issues ,I have discovered regarding the condition of Cryptorchidism

Please keep all discussions clean and only use medical terminology when referring to the anatomy of cats and kittens. Any SLANG or INAPPROPRIATE WORDS used in references to the male cat anatomy Will BE REPORTED.

I start this thread to educate, assist and inform .No intent is meant to discredit any breeder or veterinarian.

I just found out from my vet. that my new 3 month old kitten has unilateral Cryptorchidism. What is that? I asked myself.

When I asked the breeder why this was not listed on the pre sale Health Certificate, The breeder gave no explanation .
I think I will have to contact the breeder’s vet to discover why that vet failed to list the condition on the initial exam. I will keep TCS posted on what I discover.
When I asked the breeder did they know about this problem with the kitten before the sale. They said, YES. THEY KNEW !!

What reason did they have for not disclosing this information to the buyer before the sale. Well, they described it as a condition that often corrects itself within the kitten’s life ,usually before 6 months of age.

At that point, I became very skeptical about the ethics of the breeder .
Only, because all the literature on-line, describes Cryptorchidism is not likely to self correct . The research has shown that by 2 months of age the testes of the male kitten are normally positions in the scrotum.
So, I ask has anyone had this problem self correct in their pedigree kitten ? Mine is a Maine Coon.

Cryptorchidism can be bilateral or unilateral , in either case the testes are mal positioned some where within the pelvis area within the soft tissue and surrounded by ligaments or muscular tissue. The fine venous and arterial supply can become twisted and painful in some cases. There may even be a risk of the development of cancerous tumors surrounding the undescended testicle. All of which occur later in the life of the cat.
Sterility is possible and most likely in bilateral Cryptorchidism. In fact, the male cat with this condition should not be used in a breeding program. As, the research is finding cryptorchid cats have a gene that can be passed to off-spring.
And the most common problem is that the kitten will need surgical neutering verses the common neuter.
Costly, and recommend early by some vets or at 6 months by other vets. I see the vet will take into account the breed of the kitten.
 
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GoldyCat

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Did you buy the kitten with breeding rights? If so, the breeder should have told you about the condition. You cannot show a cat with an undescended testicle, at least in CFA. However, that should not affect his ability to sire kittens.

If you don't have breeding rights it's not a huge issue. It will probably cost more to have him neutered because the surgery is more complicated than neutering two descended testicles.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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I bought him as a pet and specially wanted a male because I had read the process for neuter is much simpler than the gonad hysterectomy of the female.
Now, I feel the breeder should have told me before the sale that I might be faced with surgical neuter. They require the animal be neutered prior to dispensing the Pedigree papers.
And should I be totally wrong in expecting them to pay for the neuter surgery, They said they will guaranteeing to one year that the animal is free from any genetic problems .
Has anyone had a kitten that developed a normal reproductive tract after being abnormal at birth?
 

lutece

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If the breeder was aware that he didn't have both testicles descended before placement, they should have told you. In my opinion it's unacceptable for a breeder to withhold information like that.

However, it is true that it can sometimes take a little longer for the testicles to descend. I have seen it take longer than 4 months in some cases. Give it a couple of months... if your kitten isn't going outdoors and has no access to intact female cats, it won't hurt to wait until he is 6 months old as the breeder suggests.

In the meantime, talk to the breeder, and discuss what will happen if the other testicle doesn't descend. I would suggest that you ask them to pay the difference in cost between a normal neuter and a cryptorchid / monorchid neuter, if that turns out to be necessary at 6 months. For example, if a normal neuter costs $300, but his neuter costs $500 due to searching for the other testicle, it would be fair for the breeder to contribute the $200 difference. Get cost estimates from your vet for both procedures and discuss it with the breeder.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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If the breeder was aware that he didn't have both testicles descended before placement, they should have told you. In my opinion it's unacceptable for a breeder to withhold information like that.

However, it is true that it can sometimes take a little longer for the testicles to descend. I have seen it take longer than 4 months in some cases. Give it a couple of months... if your kitten isn't going outdoors and has no access to intact female cats, it won't hurt to wait until he is 6 months old as the breeder suggests.

In the meantime, talk to the breeder, and discuss what will happen if the other testicle doesn't descend. I would suggest that you ask them to pay the difference in cost between a normal neuter and a cryptorchid / monorchid neuter, if that turns out to be necessary at 6 months. For example, if a normal neuter costs $300, but his neuter costs $500 due to searching for the other testicle, it would be fair for the breeder to contribute the $200 difference. Get cost estimates from your vet for both procedures and discuss it with the breeder.
Yes, thanks for understanding .I just sent a text to the mentor breeder. I said ,(even the shepard in the hills of a third world country will inform a buyer that the sheep for sale has a unilateral descended testes and give the buyer a fair price.)
HONESTY at pre-sale is a key . Since the mentor demanded the price of a show kitten, it is not likely she will come 'round and adit omisson of pertinent information. The mentor holds the web site and pedigree info for herself and a few small catteries which exchange breeding rights.

In all fairness the breeder/owner of the kitten did admit he knew about it and looked into the cost and sent me an estimate. Of course , I have my vets documents which one should send to any mentor/co-breeder.etc.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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To <GoldyCat>
I did tell the mentor , that that condition is not acceptable amoung show cats in CFA.
BRAVO
thanks for that tip.
Because,the mentors /breeders do not tell all, leaving buyer in the dark. Why Has breeding become full of dark secrets?
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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Now, can someone say for sure that cryptorchidism is a GENETIC condition.
The Cat DNA test , is my go to place to answer this question.or Cornell University .
 

lutece

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Now, can someone say for sure that cryptorchidism is a GENETIC condition.
The Cat DNA test , is my go to place to answer this question.or Cornell University .
There is no genetic test for cryptorchidism to my knowledge. I don't think that the genetics of cryptorchidism have been extensively studied in cats.
 

GoldyCat

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To <GoldyCat>
I did tell the mentor , that that condition is not acceptable amoung show cats in CFA.
I should expand my comment on that. An undescended testicle in the Championship classes is a disqualifying fault. You can still show him in Premiership after he's been neutered.

In my first response I was focusing more on the premise that you might be intending to breed him.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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<GoldyCat>
Thanks for clarity of CFA qualification for showing a cat. I bought the kitten as a pet. and wanted a male because I found the neuter of a male is less invasive than the spay of a female. This was important to me , personally. Now, with the strong possibility of having my red boy surgically neutered, just frightens me, having to put him under anesthesia, at any age. I am taking the most recent advice and waiting until he is 6 months.
For these reasons,
My vet. says, (The Maine coon cat grows to such a large size,which also includes the reproductive tract and it is possible the undescended testes will self correct) .
The mentor breeder says, ( We need to wait and that Cryptorchidism is absolutely NOT genetic).

Yet, I am still researching this and comments are welcome .It is going to be a Loonnng 3 months.
 

Willowy

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ust frightens me, having to put him under anesthesia, at any age
While neuters are generally less invasive, they still have to be put under anesthetic. I heard that old-timey farm vets used to stuff a tomcat headfirst in a long boot (so they couldn't move) and snip-snip them without any anesthetic, but I've never heard of it happening without anesthetic in any other context. So that's something you would have had to deal with anyway. Modern anesthetics are quite safe, and you can have bloodwork and a heart exam done beforehand if you're really worried.

My cousin's cat was fully cryptorchid. The vet made us wait until he "acted like a tomcat" so he was 10-11 months before he was done. He had to be cut in 3 places for the vet to find both testicles :/. But he healed well and is fine now, about 11 years old. It cost about twice as much as a normal neuter, back then.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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I was reading that some of the sweetest kitten can turn into “macho maniacs” when the testosterone is secreted ,it is going to be something I’l defiantly be ...watching.
In the mean time I found that I can NOT agree with the mentorbreeder who said, this is (absolutely )not genetic.
Verified vets. All say this is genetically passed through the cats’ genes line.
A study from a vet in Ontario, Canada, 2003. They studied hundreds of pedigree and non pedigree cats . Male Rag doll and Persian cats had the highest % of cryptorchid , then.
An other study from vets. In UNIV of California , 2018 .They definitely found the disorder passes through the bloodline. I will try to post a link for those who are interested.

And it only makes sense, that is why every breeder will say these kittens/cats can’t be used in a breeding program.

<Willowy>Was your cousin’s cat from the general population or breed for specific characteristics? Wow ,he was 10 months old. And did the vet do so kind of pre-echo graphy ?
 

lutece

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As far as I know, cryptorchidism is like many other things -- it is certainly possible for it to have a genetic cause, but can also happen randomly. The testicles normally find their way into the scrotum, but occasionally it doesn't happen for both testicles.

I once sold a kitten as a stud male, he had two descended testicles when my vet examined him at three months of age, then a month later when the buyer's vet examined him, he had only one! We were all very disappointed! He was neutered, but was the only cryptorchid male I have ever produced (or even heard of in my breed). My vet told me that sometimes it takes a while for the testicle to be firmly in the scrotum, sometimes there is a period of time when the testicle can move in and out of the body and might get stuck on the wrong side.
 

lutece

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I also once heard a story from a CFA judge that might be relevant, giving an example of a cat that was a late bloomer.

When judging males in the show classes for intact adults, judges always check to make sure they have two testicles. Apparently one time a judge was checking a male's testicles, and found the cat had three! The judge called up the owner, who then had to admit that the cat had initially been monorchid and they had an artificial testicle implanted so that he could be shown... but then apparently the other testicle finally descended in adulthood, so the cat ended up with three!

The cat was disqualified, of course. It is against the rules to show a cat or dog with an artificial testicle in the classes for intact adults, but I guess people sometimes do it... there is a product that comes in a range of sizes for cats and dogs called "neuticles" (strange but true, you can look it up)!
 

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Was your cousin’s cat from the general population or breed for specific characteristics? Wow ,he was 10 months old. And did the vet do so kind of pre-echo graphy ?
He was a stray, found on the street with his umbilical still on and bottlefed after that. I suspect his cryptorchism may have been caused by early malnutrition, because they didn't bottle feed him properly, although he managed to survive at least.

Most toms don't show any tommish behaviors until 9-10 months, of course some are early bloomers and some are late bloomers but I'd say that's average.

No, the vet didn't do any ultrasound or anything. One cut was midline, I assume that's what he used to look around, and then the other 2 cuts were right about where the back leg meets the body, which I assume is where the testicles were hiding on each side.
 

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From what I have been reading (not an expert, but figured I would share what I have found), cryptorchidism is an autosomal recessive condition. So in order for a male cat to have cryptorchidism, they would need to receive two copies of the defective gene (one from each parent).

Because of lack of available testing there really is no way to tell for sure if a cat is a carrier or not. A male cat that has 1 normal gene and 1 defective gene will have regularly descended testicles, and obviously a female can be a carrier with zero outward signs because they don't have testicles.

I would think then, due to its rarity in cats, that this condition can be carried through lines for a significant amount of time without being expressed, if a carrier is always mated with a non-carrier.

So it's completely possible that this breeder had zero idea that the mating between both of your kittens parents would produce kittens with cryptorchidism. It's also possible that both parents have had previous litters with other mates and all male kittens had normally decended testicles.
 

lutece

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From what I have been reading (not an expert, but figured I would share what I have found), cryptorchidism is an autosomal recessive condition.
That's in dogs. In cats, it is believed to be heritable because there is a higher incidence in certain breeds, but I am not aware of any studies showing its mode of inheritance. If you found a study showing mode of inheritance in cats, I'd like to see it.
 
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Sa'ida Maryam

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The discussion of the uncommon condition of Cryptorchid has blossomed and included some real serious thinking and comments. My thanks to everyone .
I have to follow the comment left by <ameezers>
(Cryptorchidism is an autosomal recession condition.)
“An autosome is any chromosome that is not a sex chromosome (an allosome).[1] The members of an autosome pair in a diploidcell have the same morphology, unlike those in allosome pairs which may have different structures. The DNA in autosomes is collectively known as atDNA or auDNA.[2]

For example, humans have a diploid genome that usually contains 22 pairs of autosomes and one allosome pair (46 chromosomes total). The autosome pairs are labeled with numbers (1–22 in humans) roughly in order of their sizes in base pairs, while allosomes are labelled with their letters.[3] By contrast, the allosome pair consists of two X chromosomes in females or one X and one Y chromosome in males. Unusual combinations of XYY, XXY, XXX, XXXX, XXXXX or XXYY, among other allosome combinations, are known to occur and usually cause developmental abnormalities.
Autosomes still contain sexual determination genes even though they are not sex chromosomes.” Wikipedia

So, an array of disorders can be found when one wants to find causative factors.
One might argue that human DNA has no comparison to Feline DNA, let me
Quote “The cat also serves as the model for many human genetic diseases, and both species have benefited greatly from research into these problems.” www.catdnatest.com
I found some breeders do get involved with DNA testing, some even list their concern on their websites.
I would only add that breeders and veterinarians might start looking beyond the “common disorders found among a particular cat’s linage and contact their labs. And insist that more DNA sub factors be included on the screening panels.
I know it’s a lot to ask, but, I think we gotta start somewhere.
 

lutece

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I am not completely sure what your point is? Are you saying people should do more DNA testing?
I found some breeders do get involved with DNA testing, some even list their concern on their websites.
I would only add that breeders and veterinarians might start looking beyond the “common disorders found among a particular cat’s linage and contact their labs. And insist that more DNA sub factors be included on the screening panels.
I know it’s a lot to ask, but, I think we gotta start somewhere.
Many of us already use DNA screening panels such as Optimal Selection, which bundle together pretty much all of the DNA tests available for cats: Optimal Selection™ Feline

However, even though these panels have an impressive looking list of tests, the fact is that MOST disease mutations have simply not been found and therefore cannot be tested. This includes many serious conditions that affect health.

Cryptorchidism would not be anywhere near the top of my "wish list" for researchers to study. It's not a very serious condition compared to many others, and a cryptorchid male can be easily detected and neutered... he's not going to be siring kittens. The neuter surgery is a little more complicated than usual, but after the hidden testicle is found, you can simply remove it and that's that.

Let's compare with, for example, HCM (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy). HCM cannot be detected in a young adult cat without going to a specialist vet for an expensive ultrasound (and often cannot be detected in a young cat at all), so a stud male might sire many kittens as a young adult, before suddenly being discovered to have a serious heart condition that will then affect many of his kittens. He may even have grandchildren and great grandchildren before his condition is detected. This can spread heart problems far and wide through the breed's gene pool. A genetic test stops this cycle. So, this is the sort of health condition that is more important to study.
 
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