Do you catch your dog scooting their adorable little behinds all over your favorite carpet? Have you noticed your pet excessively licking their privates? As cute as your furry friend may be, exhibiting these symptoms unfortunately could mean your pet is in dire need of an anal gland expression.
You and your dog’s anal glands
While it may not be a part of your dog’s anatomy you enjoy thinking about often, it is an important part of their physical care that merits closer attention. Anal gland problems are quite common in dogs and are often the root cause of dog scooting.
If your pet is overweight and or have a lack of fiber in their diet, they are at a higher risk of having anal gland problems. Hyperthyroidism, food sensitivities, and environmental allergies have also been linked to probable causes of anal gland irritation.
While most dogs are able to express their anal glands themselves, in certain cases human intervention may be needed. When dogs do their regular bowel movements, usually their stool can empty the anal sac naturally, but if your pet has had trouble defecating, the gland may need to be expressed manually.
Other symptoms include swelling in the rectum, diarrhea, swelling in or around the skin of the rectum, painful bowel movements, and/or blood or pus in their stool or in areas they have been lying around in.
If your dog displays any of the symptoms mentioned, we advise you to take them to a licensed veterinarian or vet technician immediately to receive a proper diagnosis.
How often do I need to express my dog’s anal glands?
Both cats and dogs often are able to express their glands by themselves naturally during their bowel movements. However, if your pet has had a history of anal gland problems, they made need to be expressed manually more often.
There are a number of things to consider regarding this topic, including, but not limited to, if they have had a medical history of obesity, allergies, hyperthyroidism, or recurring anal gland problems.
It is important to note that whilst it is important to have your pet’s anal glands expressed, there is such a thing as overdoing it, too. Whilst anal gland expression is not harmful to your pet, expressing a healthy anal gland too often can cause irritation or scar tissue when performed unnecessarily.
Let us take care of the mess for you!
While it is possible to express your pet’s anal glands yourself at home, there are many downsides to it. It can make quite the mess, not to mention awkward! Here at the Brooklyn Pet Spa, our staff are trained to make the experience as painless and care-free as possible for both you and your pet.