Expressing your dog’s anal glands

bathing a small dogThere are many different breeds of dog that have anal glands that never need expressing, however there are quite a few dogs that suffer from their anal glands or ‘sacs’ as they are sometimes referred to by veterinary surgeons.

These organs can be found beneath the skin inside the anal opening and, if they are left full, they can cause a build up of bacteria that are likely to become considerably smelly.

Anal glands look like a small kidney bean; in some cases they can become enlarged to the point that you will see your pet dragging his bottom along the floor in an attempt to reduce the discomfort. This sight is often misdiagnosed as being worms. However, most dogs that do drag themselves along the floor do not have worms, they are instead suffering from painful anal glands.

When you bathe your dog in warm bath water you are able to express the anal glands yourself. It is important to wear latex gloves when washing your dog’s bottom.

While talking to your pet in a calm voice, clean and squeeze gently the anal area in the hope of eliminating some of the fluid, to make him feel more comfortable.

It can be an advantage to both parties if the squeezing is done while the dog’s bottom is just under the water.

Do NOT attempt to put your finger inside the dog’s anal opening, this can tear the sensitive skin tissue and cause permanent damage.

If your dog is prone to having trouble with anal glands then ask a professional dog groomer to release the fluid or, better still, take him to the vets on a regular basis.

Doggie tip: When bathing your dog always use a dog shampoo which is manufactured for the tender skin tissue that covers a dog’s body.