Pet Anal Glands

Learn more about our pet anal glands services below.

Pet anal glands

Pet Anal Glands

Dogs are frequently seen rubbing their back ends on the floor, while cats lick at the tail area, but both may be suffering from anal gland problems. The anal glands are structures that are located at 4 and 8 o’clock in relation to the rectal opening. Their function in wild animals is most likely scent marking, and while wild animals can express their anal glands voluntarily, our dogs and cats cannot. When they are scared, they will express the anal glands, but most of the time, they will empty with bowel movements and walking around.

The material found in the anal glands is typically a thin liquid with a fishy odor. The anal glands may become impacted and possibly infected if the material thickens and is not expressed normally. Infected anal glands are painful and can occasionally open and drain purulent material mixed with blood, giving the impression that your pet is bleeding from the rectum. Fortunately, anal gland infections are usually treatable with antibiotics and pain relievers.

If your dog frequently has anal gland problems, we can sometimes help with diet changes or food supplements. You could either learn how to express the glands yourself or have us do it for you. The anal glands can be removed in severe cases. The good news is that most pets’ anal glands are never a problem.