Tips For Expressing Dogs Anal Glands

Examining your dogs anal glands while grooming and regular dog baths is
imperative to make sure the glands are in ideal health. It is in all probability one of the least pleasant tasks for canine owners, although for years many people that had pets did not know that dog anal glands existed.

How a Dogs Anal Gland is Cleared

Dogs will drain these sacs while eliminating. As the stool passes out of the anus, the pressure will usually drain the anal glands; however, because of the domestication of dogs, some of our canine friends have trouble clearing their sacs. Impacted anal glands are most common in small breeds and are exhibited by your canine friend scooting on the ground or licking and biting at his rear and you will possibly notice a dog odor.

Why Expressing Dogs Anal Glands is Important

When emptying of the glands does not occur, they can become impacted and it is very distressing and painful for your dog. They must be expressed or infection and abscess can follow if the impact isn’t relieved. The regular size of the sacs is that of a kidney bean but when they are full the sacs will become larger and feel hard. Normally, the impacted glands will be extremely sensitive and your canine friend may react as if in pain when you touch near that region.

Where to Find a Dogs Anal Glands

Anal sacs are located on both sides of the lower half and just within your pet’s anus. They are lined with cells that regularly exude a very strong smelling discharge. If you look closely, you will most likely see the tiny ducts through which a foul smelling liquid seeps. In the wild the secretions are used to mark territory, but in the domestic canine they have little use apart from the attention they get from other dogs, who (for reasons humans find difficult to understand) find it appealing. There is no obvious scent to humans when your pet is washed regularly and your dogs anal glands are otherwise healthy. Other canines on the other hand have no difficulty[/spin [spin]detecting the odor.

Expelling the Sacs

To get around the cost of having the sacs expelled, you can do this yourself; however, some dog owners feel it is well worth having a veterinarian carry out this service, at least the first time . To express the sacs, wear a throw away latex glove. Holding a tissue, place your thumb and forefinger on each side of the anus and press gently. Anal sack material should release from the ducts without much pressure and you will likely feel the glands decrease in size as you carefully squeeze. If you are hesitant about doing this or observe anything curious, consult your veterinarian. It is best to have someone hold your pet still, while you do this.

A Change of Diet

Your veterinarian may recommend a diet high in fiber if you find your dog is having regular problems with clogged anal sacs. The extra fiber will help to express the anal sacs when your pet defecates.

If Infection Occurs

If anal glands become infected they will become larger and may rupture through the skin by the anus. This will produce a painful draining abscess and will need appropriate veterinarian care and most likely manual expressing of the sacs until the abscess has gone.

Re-occurring Impacted Glands

If the impacted anal sacs become a chronic issue for your dog, they can be surgically removed. This can often result in a more enjoyable relationship for you and your furry friend.

This is considered routine surgery but there are potential problems because of the many nerves in that area and fecal incontinence may arise if too much damage occurs. Additionally, if your dogs anal glands tissue was not entirely removed, they have the potential to keep on secreting fluid. When this accumulates, the effect could be an abscess and perhaps a persistent
draining tract from the sac to the skin. If this occurs the veterinarian will need to go back and remove the sac tissue to have a desired outcome.

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