Ovarian and testicular function in the domestic cat: Clinical management of spontaneous reproductive disease

Shirley D. Johnston, Margaret V. Root, Patricia N.S. Oison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Vaginal cornification and/or serum progesterone concentration may be used as indicators of follicular and luteal function in the cat in diagnosis of estrus, induced or spontaneous ovulation, ovarian remnant syndrome, and prolonged gestation. Feline sperm may be collected by electroejaculation, ejaculation into an artificial vagina, cystocentesis of the male following ejaculation or by vaginal wash of the bred female. Normal feline seminal plasma contains high concentrations of alkaline phosphatase, and may contain more than 10 000 colony forming units (CFU) ml-1 bacteria, most of which are normal preputial flora. Serum testosterone concentration, often undetectable (less than 0.02 ng ml-1) in the normal male, increases 1 h after gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) or 4 h after human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) administration in the tom. Presence of penile spines is an indicator of testicular tissue or testosterone administration. Gonadectomy performed at 7 weeks or 7 months of age in male and female cats is associated with increased length of long bones due to delayed physeal closure, decreased heat production, and increased risk of obesity, and not with decrease in urethral diameter. Normal penile extrusion was not possible in 6/6 male cats neutered at 7 weeks of age or 2/5 male cats neutered at 7 months of age, owing to persistence of the balanopreputial fold, which normally undergoes dissolution under the influence of androgens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-274
Number of pages14
JournalAnimal reproduction science
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Apr 1996

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Dr. Dennis F. Lawler, Research Associate in the Division of Pet Nutrition and Care Research of the Ralston Purina Company, and Ralston Purina, St. Louis, MO, USA, for funding portions of this work. Supported in part by the University of Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station Project No. MIN-62-055.

Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Cat ovary
  • Cat reproduction
  • Cat testis
  • Prepuberal gonadectomy


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