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Old March 3rd, 2007, 08:09 PM
joeysmama joeysmama is offline
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Dog Anal glands - Answered by Dr. Van Lienden

Cooper had the stinky fishy anal gland smell about 3 weeks ago. I took him to the vet who expressed his anal glands and said that it's just one of those things. He said that nothing causes it and nothing prevents it.

Okay, tonight my little buddy was climbing all over us on the couch and sure enough he reeks again. It's Saturday night and the vet isn't in again until Monday and I really really don't want to pay emergency vet prices for something that's less of a health issue than it is a gross out factor.

The vet talked about 4 o'clock and 8 o'clock positioning but I'm kind of worried about doing anything that might cause harm. Any tips, hints suggestions? Is it really alright to do this ourselves? We were out ice skating all afternoon and I'm pooped and not looking forward to this and the bath afterwards.

And I'm also a little bummed because I'm thinking he's going to be prone to this if it happened again so soon.

Anyway, enough of my whining. Thanks in advance for any help you can give me !
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Old March 3rd, 2007, 08:19 PM
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Spirit Spirit is offline
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I'd reccommend an alcoholic beverage of your choice, and a surgical rubber glove. LOL

My cat has this problem when she was younger, and a change of diet seemed to fix it completely. I forget exactly what the vet said causes it, but I do remember it was something to do with the stool not being excreeted properly. Maybe do a search?
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Old March 3rd, 2007, 08:21 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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This is not necessarily a bad thing--if the anal glands are 'going off' (so to speak) by themselves, they at least aren't going to get impacted. We had a male dog with impacted anal glands and only surgery eventually fixed the problems. Did the vet think Cooper's anal glands were inflamed or infected?

All six of our dogs have times when their anal glands 'go off' (so to speak ) periodically. I've found that dampening some paper towels and using them to wipe off under the tail goes a long way in controlling the odor. (Use more paper towel if you don't want to get any on your hands ...or use latex gloves.) If Cooper is expressing them well by himself, that may be all you need to do when you catch a whiff of 'tuna butt'.
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Old March 3rd, 2007, 08:40 PM
joeysmama joeysmama is offline
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Thank you both so much. I'm going to take the advice and pour myself a drink AND use the wet paper towel trick.

The vet didn't think they were impacted or infected and the first vet I called seemed to think that he was expressing them naturally and that it was ok--for the reasons that Hazel gave.

I thought I read something about diet playing into it but can't remember where I read that but it sounds like a good thing to tell my husband when he's giving him too much people food.
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Old March 3rd, 2007, 08:48 PM
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One Beagle Girl One Beagle Girl is offline
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Here's a site with an animated 'how to'. It's easier than seeing real pictures! I found it when my guy was having problems (I did take him to the vet in the morning) and I found it was really helpful. I know my dog was relieved that I found it (nasty pun intended)!


Good luck!

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Last edited by One Beagle Girl; March 3rd, 2007 at 08:49 PM. Reason: Edited to add
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Old March 3rd, 2007, 09:10 PM
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mafiaprincess mafiaprincess is offline
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Miss Cider had a one time issue near a year ago. They were expressed and I've been paro ever since about 'what if'. They were fairly full, and the liquid was no longer liquidy, therefore she couldn't express them.

Since then she likes to play with her bum, like she didn't know she had one prior to her anal gland issue. And I've caught fishy bum a few times. But.. no problems causing excessive bum munching.

At our evil horrible yearly vet appointment with a tool who wasn't our normal vet he tried to push 19% Hill's nasty fiber food on me. And was super mad when I called it crap.. Said more fiber.. firmer stool.. less anal gland issues.

But.. her poop is fairly firm. I've dropped a teaspoon of bran buds into her kibble now and then, doesn't seem to change much. Thankfully lately she's thinking less about her bum.
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Old March 4th, 2007, 07:48 PM
Boubou Boubou is offline
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If your smelling them, I wouldn't worry too much about it. He has the 'gift' of being able to empty them herself. Usually there is a problem when the dog is scooting his bum around constantly and there is none of that lovely anal gland smell. That's when you should get him to a qualified groomer or a vet to have them emptied.....
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