Anal gland expression
Hi everybody, we cover EVERYTHING on Boogie’s blog and today’s post is about anal gland expression. Warning: this may gross you out.
I know that it’s time for a vet visit when I smell that familiar stinky fishy odor coming from his butt, when I see him obsessively licking his butt or dragging it on my rug (ew). This happens every few weeks. It is said that some dogs can empty their own glands when they do a poop, but others need to have this done for them.
According to this blog post (and I have heard this theory before), it could be a matter of feeding the right food with enough fiber. Boogie eats really well and has firm poops. I have also tried adding extra fiber to Boogie’s diet, assuming that harder poops = natural pressure on the anal glands, alas … this made no difference.
I know some vets charge for anal gland expression and the costs could add up. Thankfully the clinic that we go to does it for free… but there is a long wait to see the Dr. and the simple 2-second task of squeezing Boogie’s glands sucks several hours out of my day.
A year ago, I asked Dr. R to show me how to do it myself, at home. He made it look so easy. I also watched several YouTube videos.They made it look so easy too.
So I put on some latex gloves and attempted to express Boogie’s glands myself. It was NOT EASY!
1. I couldn’t feel the anal glands. I tried the 4 c’clock and 8 o’clock positions; I felt all around the anal opening… Seriously, I could not feel anything! Nothing at all. No pea-sized sacs, nothing.
2. I even stuck my fingers inside his butt (with gloves on of course!) – NOTHING. I couldn’t feel anything to squeeze.
3. With my thumb and forefinger around Boogie’s butthole… I squeezed upwards, downwards, inwards,… I tried all kinds of squeezing, used all kinds of pressure… nothing came out.
That was about 2 months ago. I gave up and took Boogie in to see Dr. R who had the stinky fluid squirting out of Boogie’s butt with ONE precision squeeze.
Last week I brought the subject up again, told Dr. R that I had trouble doing it myself at home. He showed me again but honestly, I couldn’t see what he did differently.It looked the same as what I did.
Dr. R’s advice: “Just keep practicing”.
Two nights ago, sitting on the couch with the pumpkinhead on my lap, I caught a strong whiff of that familiar stinky fishy odor. What the heck… we only had his glands expressed ONE WEEK AGO! I carried the Boogs to the bathtub, grabbed some toilet paper and once again, tried to locate his anal glands. NOTHING. I couldn’t find them. (sigh) Boogie was so patient with me. He stood there calmly, head turned in my direction … waiting, waiting.. Three minutes later I was still squeezing and squeezing (Poor Boogie)… nothing came out.
I threw down the toilet paper and used both hands… squeezing inwards on either side of his butthole. A pale brownish fluid oozed out of his butt. OMG. We have a breakthrough! I grabbed the toilet paper and wiped it off.
Could I do this again? I have no idea. I know now to use two hands but I think I fluked it…
Do any of you do anal gland expression at home? Did you get it right the first time? I am open to advice!
P.S. No, I am not going to illustrate this one :)