Stud Dog Issue: Blood in a Dog's SemenWhen you are collecting semen from a dog, sometimes blood is seen in the semen. Finding blood in a dog's semen is not normal, and you don't want to see blood in the collection because it is toxic to the semen. Males over five-years-old with blood in their semen usually have a prostate issue.
Prostate Issues or InjuryWhen collecting semen, you first get the pre-seminal fraction which is usually clear. Then you get the sperm fraction which should be milky white, and lastly the prostatic fraction which adds volume to semen and pushes the sperm forward. The prostatic fraction is the last fraction given and is put in during the tie. In the case of a prostate issue or infection, this fraction often contains blood.
Injury, usually from fighting, is another cause of blood in a dog's semen. However, this is usually temporary and we worry more about scar tissue in the testicle than infection. When dogs come into heat, they can become grouchy. Some will snap or fight with friends that they normally get along with. If a male dog gets bit, we need to prevent any infection, especially if the scrotum is damaged. These males should be started on an antibiotic and monitored to be sure they recover.
DiagnosisWhen diagnosing the cause of blood in the semen, first we rule out Brucellosis for our own peace of mind.
- If the testicle itself is sore, Brucellosis must be ruled out. Often the RAST test is ran in the clinic to confirm Brucellosis negative.
- Examine the scrotum for any signs of trauma or damage. These males must be monitored to be sure they recover without infection.
- On males five-years-old or older, the vet will do a rectal exam and feel for prostate enlargement and tenderness.
- Lastly, your vet will examine the semen for blood, bacteria, and white blood cells, indicating infection as a cause.
TreatmentTreatment depends on the cause but usually includes long-term antibiotic for four weeks and then re-evaluating the semen for blood and fertility. Trimeth-sulfa or Enrofloxacin (Baytril) are your best choices for antibiotics. Once cleared, relapses of prostate issues are common so monitor for reoccurrence. It is not enough to just have semen; we want these males to have normal numbers of sperm and no blood in any of the collection.
If you have cleared the blood in the semen but are still seeing low sperm count, give Oxy Stud to recover fertility and support semen production. I prefer to keep them on Oxy Stud while treating; males are a valuable resource and we want full recovery. Keeping sperm counts high fertilizes all the eggs and is the key to normal litter size!
If you need help, call us at 800.786.4751.
Don Bramlage, DVM, Former Director of Veterinary Services at Revival Animal Health
The materials, information and answers provided through this website are not intended to replace the medical advice or services of your personal veterinarian or other pet health care professional. Consult your own veterinarian for answers to specific medical questions, including diagnosis, treatment, therapy or medical attention.