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  #1  
Old July 19th, 2013, 04:14 PM
xcaer xcaer is offline
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Anal gland question(s)

Okay, so I have a 2.5 year old Shepherd/Akita mix, Eli.
He was recently on antibiotics for a skin issue, and it caused soft stool for awhile and in turn, I ended up having to express his anal glands. He started getting the tell tale fishy smell really bad, but no obvious signs of discomfort. I got a bit of the lovely smelling fluid out, and the smell went away. I did not completely empty them though as I was fairly new to the manual express thing.

Now, I just recently expressed them again (3-5 weeks after the first I think?) because he's had terrible gas, and he's been on a newer, much better quality diet, however it's not very high in fiber so I've been supplementing with 2.5 tsp of ground flax twice per day which has bulked his stool up quite nicely, but it's still not as firm as I think it should be in order to express naturally.
Again, he had no obvious signs of discomfort. No scooting,licking/chewing,not super smelly, but just smelly enough that when I was checking his tail(where his skin issue was, as it requires regular cleaning still) I could smell it. Got quite a bit of fluid out, but again, not completely empty.

Now my questions;

How empty should a dog's anal glands be exactly? I know the fluid is meant to aid in lubrication while having a bowel movement so I'd assume they shouldn't be completely empty, but how much is too much, or how little is too little?

Also, what can I give him to firm up his stool?
I don't want to create MORE stool which is what the flax(and fiber in general) does, I just want to firm up the poop so he can express his glands naturally. His stool isn't loose or anything by any means, it's well formed and such, but it's clearly still too soft for him to express naturally.
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Old July 19th, 2013, 04:44 PM
Jull Jull is offline
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aaah antibiotics, this is exactly what happened to me and my first anal gland experience lol.

I would cut down on the fiber, because as you mention that creates more pooping, which can affect the glands as well.

There is a video I really like from Dr. Becker and I always recommend everyone with this issue to watch it.

http://youtu.be/yA9SeHAEyQ4

Now, I can tell you that when my little guy first had his fishy smell, I had no idea what it was, I took him to the vet and they expressed the glands and the Dr. told me to bring him in every time it happened and she could express the glands for us but the more she did it, the more it happened... so that is when I saw this video

I feed him raw, and that has made a difference as well. Bones are also key, the food I use the most has the bone in it (not powered but ground because I can see the little pieces of bone in it) which helps at the time of pooping to naturally express the glands. I also have some meat that has no bone in it, so I have just recently bought chicken necks to try, tonight will be our first time!

I cannot tell you how full or empty they are supposed to be... but I know that if for some reason my dog's are a bit full, he will sort of chew on them him self and express them... then he will just smell a bit But I do not express the glands my self any more, nor let the groomers or vet do it. You just gotta watch for any other symptoms to make sure its not an infection.

Here is also a link about anal glands from another holistic Dr. I like to read a lot.

http://peterdobias.com/community/2012/09/5661/
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  #3  
Old July 19th, 2013, 05:05 PM
xcaer xcaer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jull View Post
aaah antibiotics, this is exactly what happened to me and my first anal gland experience lol.

I would cut down on the fiber, because as you mention that creates more pooping, which can affect the glands as well.

There is a video I really like from Dr. Becker and I always recommend everyone with this issue to watch it.

http://youtu.be/yA9SeHAEyQ4

Now, I can tell you that when my little guy first had his fishy smell, I had no idea what it was, I took him to the vet and they expressed the glands and the Dr. told me to bring him in every time it happened and she could express the glands for us but the more she did it, the more it happened... so that is when I saw this video

I feed him raw, and that has made a difference as well. Bones are also key, the food I use the most has the bone in it (not powered but ground because I can see the little pieces of bone in it) which helps at the time of pooping to naturally express the glands. I also have some meat that has no bone in it, so I have just recently bought chicken necks to try, tonight will be our first time!

I cannot tell you how full or empty they are supposed to be... but I know that if for some reason my dog's are a bit full, he will sort of chew on them him self and express them... then he will just smell a bit But I do not express the glands my self any more, nor let the groomers or vet do it. You just gotta watch for any other symptoms to make sure its not an infection.

Here is also a link about anal glands from another holistic Dr. I like to read a lot.

http://peterdobias.com/community/2012/09/5661/
I'm REALLY not interested in feeding raw, so I'm just looking for something I can add to his current food. I'm following just a vet recommended dosage for the flax, so I don't really want to cut it back too much as his stool IS much more satisfactory than it was before, but I mean, he was on a junk brand food before and he NEVER had these issues.

Other than the glands though, this dog is fairly healthy and exhibiting no symptoms.
He's happy, get's a good amount of exercise, no allergies, nothing.
He is slightly overweight, but only by a couple pounds and we're remedying that currently, but even when he had his first anal gland problem, he NEVER scooted,NEVER licked/Chewed at it, never seemed uncomfortable at all. He just stunk really bad.

Can I buy bone somewhere that's already ground?
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Old July 19th, 2013, 09:29 PM
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Loki Love Loki Love is offline
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In my opinion, you're better off finding a food that does not require extra supplements for stool production. You want a food that can do it all for you, ideally. What are you feeding now?
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Old July 20th, 2013, 09:26 AM
xcaer xcaer is offline
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Originally Posted by Loki Love View Post
In my opinion, you're better off finding a food that does not require extra supplements for stool production. You want a food that can do it all for you, ideally. What are you feeding now?
Right now we're feeding lifetime large breed chicken and oatmeal and we finally JUST got both dogs on it exclusively and they love it. If I switch at all, it will be to another one of this brand because it's been the only one that one dog or the other won't turn it's nose up at.

http://www.nutreco-pet.ca/brands/lif...large-breed/2/

EDIT:
Also, not looking to break my bank account. My boys eat about 30lbs of food per month EACH.
Lifetime brand is much better than the dog chow we were feeding before, and it fits into our one income/stay at home mom budget.
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Old July 20th, 2013, 09:46 AM
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Loki Love Loki Love is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xcaer View Post
Right now we're feeding lifetime large breed chicken and oatmeal and we finally JUST got both dogs on it exclusively and they love it. If I switch at all, it will be to another one of this brand because it's been the only one that one dog or the other won't turn it's nose up at.

http://www.nutreco-pet.ca/brands/lif...large-breed/2/

EDIT:
Also, not looking to break my bank account. My boys eat about 30lbs of food per month EACH.
Lifetime brand is much better than the dog chow we were feeding before, and it fits into our one income/stay at home mom budget.
It's pretty grain heavy - I'm not sure how much you're paying so it's hard for me to say if there are comparable options out there

What other brands have you tried? Costco does sell a good grain free food for a relatively decent price (if that's an option?)
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  #7  
Old July 19th, 2013, 09:44 PM
Jull Jull is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xcaer View Post
I'm REALLY not interested in feeding raw, so I'm just looking for something I can add to his current food. I'm following just a vet recommended dosage for the flax, so I don't really want to cut it back too much as his stool IS much more satisfactory than it was before, but I mean, he was on a junk brand food before and he NEVER had these issues.

Other than the glands though, this dog is fairly healthy and exhibiting no symptoms.
He's happy, get's a good amount of exercise, no allergies, nothing.
He is slightly overweight, but only by a couple pounds and we're remedying that currently, but even when he had his first anal gland problem, he NEVER scooted,NEVER licked/Chewed at it, never seemed uncomfortable at all. He just stunk really bad.

Can I buy bone somewhere that's already ground?
My kid never scooted, licked or anything before either, he learned how to take care of it now but when it happened the first time it was like out of nowhere... one time at the Drs office he got scared and next thing we know fear turned into fishy smell

I dont know if you can buy ground bone, you could buy the bones and ground your self maybe? But not sure it would be good to add it into a dry food... do you feed kibble? you could try just giving him chicken or turkey necks. Omega oil suplement is also good to add a few times a week into a diet.

One thing to keep in mind too is that if you smell them once in a while it means they are working. Not often though...
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Last edited by Jull; July 19th, 2013 at 10:00 PM. Reason: horrible phone spelling...
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  #8  
Old July 20th, 2013, 02:10 AM
MaxaLisa MaxaLisa is offline
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Food allergies can cause anal gland issues too. Yes, what are you feeding?
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