What Is Your Position On Vulvoplasty?

For dogs.

No friends, not a joke. Recessed vulvas affect approximately 23% of female puppies born these days.

Ok I totally made up that statistic but I’m sure there is some credible clinical data mine out there containing the real answer.

I broach this topic with sensitivity (but mostly jocularity) because it afflicts one dog near and dear to my heart.


I met Scully and her owners, Renee and James, at the dog run. They hired me to walk Scully while Renee was out of town over the holiday season and we have been bestees ever since. I tend to see one or both of them with Scully every day at the Tompkins Square Dog Run.

I can’t believe I just used the “word” bestees. Twice. AND I italicized it the second time. Moving on!

Now dog owners and walkers alike will understand how not weird it is that the topic of Scully’s vulva has come up in casual conversation. People with children may understand having been accountable for keeping someone else’s junk clean but for those of you who do not own a pet nor are responsible for the upbringing of any carbon-based life form, take heed. And proceed with caution.

Renee has been concerned about the appearance of Scully’s hoo-ha for a while now. “It just doesn’t look…right.” Unfortunately she was correct. At Scully’s most recent checkup, she was indeed diagnosed with a recessed vulva.

Now I may have learned a lot about dogs during my tenure as a dog walker but this is definitely not one that has come up yet. Only one thing left to do.

Google search.

So I typed in recessed vulva and was immediately bombarded with web articles on the topic. There are…a lot. The top hit was one titled In’s and Out’s of Puppy Vulvas.

Ok sure. Click!

Oh boy…pictures. Side by side pics of a healthy vulva and a recessed vulva.

After I was able to tear my eyes away from a shade of pink I will from this day forth no longer find attractive, I read the first sentence. “I hope this subject and page didn’t cause your jaw to hit your keyboard.” Pretty close, friend. Pretty close.

I read on to find out that it can be pretty serious, at least according to the article’s very…passionate author. Judging by its tone and verbiage, one might deduce that he/she is a dog breeder/enthusiast rather than a health care professional. Just saying.

SIDENOTE: Upon further investigating the source of this site, I discovered its menu. A random sample of pages include but are not limited to: Animals in Heaven, Being Diagnosed with a Possible Brain Aneurysm, Breeding Responsibly, Spreading His Word and Top Ten Reasons Not To Get A Lab. Yeah. So while it appears to focus on dogs, the site owner has managed to throw in some personal health anecdotes and some Jesus. Credibility…SHOT DOWN!

Upon reading other more reliable articles from online veterinary forums and journals, I was able to learn that the condition does indeed make Scully susceptible to frequent UTIs and dooms her poor owners to wiping her peesh from now on to help prevent them.


Of course, this is the more labor-intensive yet cost effective way of treating her condition. The vet…recommended a vulvoplasty.

What’s a vulvoplasty you ask? I’ll tell you!

A vulvoplasty is, “the surgical excision of the redundant perivulvar skin folds. This reconstructive procedure provides better ventilation of the perivulvar area.” Click here for source material. Careful…this site shows vulvotastic before and after pictures.

In short, it’s turning one’s innie into an outie. A surgical HVAC adjustment, if you will.

A very, very expensive adjustment.

After scanning a few message boards looking for an approximate cost, I found a few. Let’s just say it would cost me a couple of iPads (new ones, not refurbished) and a month’s rent and utilities. Ouch.

I wonder if they had doggie health insurance, would it be covered? Is there even such a thing? I’ve gone on way too long on this topic and don’t really see a proper conclusion forming. I’m going to go now…and not think about dog junk. At least until Tuesday.


One last thing…I would be remiss to not mention that it is indeed Race Day and as usual I have no idea who is competing today. But as someone NOT in Indianapolis right now I have the luxury of checking its progress on TV. Not that radio isn’t fun. It totally is.

148 of 365 for postaday2011


3 thoughts on “What Is Your Position On Vulvoplasty?

  1. Thanks for your thoughts on this subject… My pup is scheduled for this surgery tomorrow… and yes she does have pet insurance (thank goodness) and yes it is covered (and they covered all of the previous appointments for urinalysis and antibiotics once we had it diagnosed) Pet Plan. Really. Saved my booty and allowed me to choose the best option for my pup.

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