Retained Testis in Stallions/Colts

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Well-Known Member
Aug 4, 2005
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Hi I am new - just joined this forum!

Was wondering if anyone has had anyting to do with a stallion/colt with retained testis. If so has it ever dropped or did it have to be removed?

What is the oldest age someone has seen a second testis drop?

Has this passed to progeny?

Any info would be appreciated!
I once rescued a stallion that was a 3 year old, with only one testicle dropped. I kept him on the opposite side of a fence were he could see/smell my cycleing mares. He did drop the other testicle in the heat of the summer 2 months later, so he was able to be finally gelded, by his new owners. Some colts dont drop til a year, and even one and a half.- and "usually" in the warmer months... (In the winter they can pull them back up, I have noticed)
I add to that- since I am a stickler for this- no colt that drops that late should be used as a stallion!!! I KNOW lots will disagree BUT it is a HUGE fault and it will be passed on. We are far too tolerant of this fault in Minis for some strange reason- I say again since you are new (HALLO!!! WELCOME!! I'm not always this crabby
) My colts are always born with two fully descended testicles. If they are not, I am worried!!! If you are worrying you will not be able to have the colt gelded- you really need to have an expert check him, or have him sedated by a Vet- I have a two year old at the moment who was absolutely FINE last year, but one has obviously strangulated over the winter because now he has one huge one and one that you would definitely not find unless you really knew how to look (Incidentally, this is NOT something for which I want to gain a reputation!!
We recently gelded a chryptorchid 2 year old stallion. Luckily the tesicle was not very far into the abdomen so it was easily removed.

I definately agree with rabbitfizz that these stallions should NOT be used for breeding. This condition is generally genetically predisposed.

I had a colt that did not drop both till he was nearly two. The second was tiny when it finally dropped, almost like a grain of corn. I know large horses are supposed to be dropped by one year, but research I did on minis said they can be up to 5. Sometimes the vet can find the other if the colt is sedated. I do not think it is a desireable trait, though I am not sure it is heriditary. My colt always acted immature and silly. He was a beautiful pinto, but NOT a temperament I would have wanted passed on. I had him gelded as soon as I saw the corn!

Marsha this is a self perpetuating myth- and the exact reason we should not be breeding form these "late bloomers" My Minis drop at birth- I have NEVER had one that did not drop at birth drop at two years old, not Arab not Welsh, not Mini, not in over forty years!!!
I am new at breeding, and owning, but all my colts so far over the age of one, are all dropped. My 3 two year olds (two of which are scheduled to have a day at the vets) all dropped in the winter before their two year old year. My yearling, on the other hand, dropped both of his within two days of each other when I had one of my mares in heat across the way in another stall. He now has one dropped most of the time, and occasionally both are down. I'm keeping an eye on him, as I won't breed a cryptorchid either. If my boys aren't down by two and a half, I will geld them. The world can use more geldings, and there will always be another colt (or stallion).
My yearling stallion can suck his up tight at will. I've been trying to keep an eye on him and make sure all is well. I can definitely see one, but when I've tried to physically find out, he sucks them up tight. He's across the fence from a 2 year old filly and she keeps him on his toes. I'm pretty sure he has both decended, but he makes it hard to be sure.

Last year, before gelding my AQHA yearling, the vet asked if I could palpate him to be sure they are both there before she comes; no problem, he didn't mind one bit and they were definitely there. This little mini stallion is definitely "protective" of his jewels.
I'm afraid mine have no choice in the matter- they are personhandled from birth
rabbitsfizz, are you saying that the late dropping IS hereditary? I know chryptorchid is, but delayed dropping also? My sister had a full brother to the colt I had and he dropped normally. I had another full brother to the colt and he was normal also, so I wonder if it is always an inherited thing. I know I would not want to perpetuate undesireable attributes, such as viciousness, but whether a testicle dropped or not by a certain age doesn't seem critical. Would you say the immature temperament of my colt was related to the testicle condition? The temperament was a significant reason to geld him.

I breed my entires at two years old, therefore all the entires I have ever used - and they get well used
- are dropped and ready for work at age two- actually from birth but that is beside the point. The point is it would be no use to me if a colt dropped at three, four or five. Since my entires are ready for work at a young age, I seem to have no problem with late dropping testicles. It would make a HUGE difference to me as I also geld my foals!!! Yes, I think the problem is hereditary, as I had never even heard of such a thing before I came on here!! In all the years I have been breeding- over forty now- I had NEVER heard of such a thing. Monorchidism?? Yes, I'd heard of it- never experienced it, though. The problem, as I see it, is that people keep "stallions" they do not breed- not done in almost any other breed- so it is of not importance if the Crown Jewells are late putting in an appearance. Or they breed one mare a year- same difference. I have always bred a minimum of ten mares a year- the Arabs covered up to thirty sometimes more a year, there would have been little point in telling a mare owner- "Oh th either one will be along soon" They will not breed from a stallion with a hereditary defect and he would not get a license anyway. I think Mini breeders need to be far less tolerant and far more picky.
thanks for all the feed back. Good to hear some other opinions on the topic. The horse I am concerned about only had 1 testi as a yearling but by the time he was a 2yr old there was a second testi though a bit smaller then the other I felt it easily on a few occasions. I got the vet out to do a vet check and no testi. Since then I have not been able to feel it. - He has defenitely not been gelded. Maybe he does 'suck' it up very very well. I don't know. maybe a sedative would help!
The latest I had one drop was 19 months. Now, oddly, this colt had both testicles when I checked for the first time, which was four months old. Shoulda had him gelded, then!

After he was 6 months, when I was going to get it done, they had disappeared, both of them.

When he was 19 months old, first one, then a week later, the other dropped. They were very small when they dropped, but quickly grew quite large.

Yes, the single testicle that has just dropped can be very small and hard to find, especially at birth as they are like tiny beans or tubes in there.

I had one stallion that had one testicle from the time I got him (4 mo.) and never got the other, not when he was 4.5 years old, even, so I had him gelded. The visible and palpable testicle was fairly small about the size of a walnut til he was 2, and then it grew about the size of a large plum. My vet agreed this was a problem, and he palpated him several times. One came off normally, but the other was quite deep in the abdomen and required extensive and invasive surgery.

None of his sons had the same problem, they all three had their testicles at birth and were gelded normally (yes, I bred my monorchid/cryptorchid and I would not do it again now that I have learned what I know now, but I was honest and I did geld his babies).

In the case of purchasing an older stallion, I guess you are at the mercy of the breeder as to whether he dropped early or late, but I would choose one that had dropped before by the time he was a yearling and no later, if I had to do it again.

Liz M.

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