Is Your Dog Anal 4 Reasons Dogs May Drag Their Bottoms

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Is Your Dog Anal 4 Reasons Dogs May Drag Their Bottoms

by Joanell Hutchinson

Many dogs scoot (drag) their bottoms across carpets, ground or other rough surfaces making it appear as though they are wiping their rear. The real causes can be much more serious and may warrant a trip to the veterinarian for an examination. Some of the most common reasons for this behavior are discussed below.

Anal Sac Disease is common in small dogs but rare in large dogs. It occurs when the anal sacs become impacted, infected, abscessed or neoplastic (abnormal tissue formation).

Impaction is when the anal gland fluids become too thick to be easily expressed.

Infections will result in the production of a yellow or bloody pus-like substance.

Abscess around the rectum area will become swollen and will be hot and tender to the touch. If the abscess erupts it will produce pus and blood.

The anal glands are two tiny sacs located inside the dog?s bottom. They are believed to be scent glands because they accumulate a fluid substance that, when released, produces a strong, foul odor.

The sacs are packed with a thick and pasty brown substance which, when secreted, is like a thin ribbon. This substance can be expressed (released) as a thin ribbon only with a great amount of pressure usually produced by the act of defecating.

The anal fluids may fail to naturally express during defecation. When dogs defecate the fluid from the anal sac generally releases leaving the scent of the dog on his stools, thereby identifying him to other dogs.

If the dog is obese he may have poor muscle tone and may not have the ability to cause the release of the anal sac fluids on his own. If the dog is unable to express the fluid himself, it may have to be done manually by the owner or by a veterinarian.

The retention of these fluids can lead to bacterial overgrowth, infection, and inflammation of the anal sac area. Signs of anal sac fluid retention are pain while sitting, scooting or dragging the rear end, licking or biting the anal sac area and pain during defecation.

If your dog is showing any of these signs have your veterinarian examine him to see if the sacs are impacted. If there is Impaction and the fluid is not expressed, the glands could rupture. Your veterinarian may choose to manually express the sacs or, if the area is infected, he may choose to flush the sacs and fill them with antibiotics. Surgical removal of the sacs is also possible on dogs with chronic problems.

Diagnosing the problem is usually done by a digital rectal examination. If the sacs are found to be impacted, they can be manually expressed but must be done very gently. While some dog owners prefer to express the glands themselves, it may be best to have your veterinarian do the procedure.

Generalized seborrhea or the production of glandular hypersecretion may also cause the retention of the fluids.

Round worms or tape worms may also cause your dog to scoot his bottom or bite at the area around the rectum.

Allergies to flea bites can make the area around the rectum itchy.

Article written by JD Hutchinson

Information for this article is from a number of sources including the Merck Veterinary Manual, Ninth Edition, and Taber?s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary.

Copyright ? 2006 Is Your Dog Anal Retentive? This article may be reprinted on the condition that the writer?s name and web address are prominently displayed, and left intact.

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