Understanding the Effects of Persistently Elevated Luteinising Hormone in Castrated Dogs

What you didn't learn about in veterinary school — adverse health effects resulting from chronically elevated luteinising hormone concentrations.

Routine surgical sterilization removes the dog's gonads, which eliminates the normal negative feedback provided to the anterior pituitary gland regulating luteinising hormone (LH) synthesis and release. As a result, LH concentrations can be over 30 times higher than intact dogs.

When LH binds to its receptors, it causes nitric oxide secretion and cell proliferation. Following gonad removal, LH binds to receptors in the bladder, skin, thyroid, adrenal cortex, ligaments, subchondral bone, blood vessels, lymphocytes, and behavior centers of the brain to cause a whole host of non-neoplastic and neoplastic health problems for the remainder of the dog's life. To reduce the risk of these health problems, veterinarians should provide dog owners with surgical and non-surgical sterilization options that do not involve removing the gonads..


  • Learn about the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis is dysregulated following desexing

  • Learn about the role of luteinising hormone on several non-neoplastic disorders that occur more commonly following desexing

  • Learn about the role of luteinising hormone on several neoplastic disorders that occur more commonly following desexing

Kindly sponsored by Virbac

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Live CPD Session with Dr Michelle Kutzler
Tuesday 5th December
8.00pm - 9.00pm GMT


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About the speaker:

Dr. Michelle Kutzler grew up on a small hobby farm in Washington State, USA. She graduated from Washington State University veterinary school in 1993 and worked in private practice for four years before pursuing a theriogenology residency at Cornell University, before completing a PhD here as well.

Since 2002, Dr. Kutzler has been at Oregon State University. She has published widely in the area of non-surgical sterilization as well as the long-term adverse health effects of spaying and neutering dogs.

Since 1999, Dr. Kutzler has been an active member of the Society for Theriogenology and the American College of Theriogenologists serving as a board-member and on several committees. Dr. Kutzler is also on the Reproduction Control Committee for the World Small Animal Veterinary Association, Scientific Advisory Committee for the Alliance for Contraception in Cats and Dogs, and the Chair of Scientific Committee for the 2026 International Symposium on Canine and Feline Reproduction.


We would like to extend a massive thank you to Virbac for sponsoring this live CPD session.

Virbac bring you Suprelorin - a sustained release implant that contains deslorelin acetate (a GnRH super agonist). It is used in healthy, sexually mature dogs and ferrets that have not been neutered to make them temporarily infertile.

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