Search Results for 'anal glands'

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    Ryan K

    My dog has recently been having issues with his anal glands and I have been constantly having to have them expressed at the vets office. This is no problem to me but I am wondering if there is a better food I could put him on that might alleviate those issues and make him more comfortable for longer periods between those expressing sessions? He is currently on California Natural’s Grain Free Salmon Meal & Peas. I do not know of any specific protein allergies although he does get itchy with some foods *lamb, chicken*. Please let me know if there is a brand or food that is recommended for better anal gland health in pups.


    Hi Melissa, boiled pumkin fixed my boys anal gland problem, I just give him some boiled pumkin daily about 20 grams a heap tablespoon & he has stop rubbing bum on my carpet & I havent had to have his glands express by vet… a vet on TV recommended it, he also said to add pumkin for dogs that eat their own poo..I boil a heap of pumkin & freeze little sections about 2 days worth & pull out the night before…


    I second the Nut’s food recommendations.

    I would also agree that anal gland issues can be related to food intolerance.

    I have a two year old Golden with food intolerance issues. Flax is one of his problems. Recently I have him some treats, maybe one or two per day, just to see how much flax he could tolerate. After several days, I started to get the faint whiff of small gland and knew he had his fill.

    Was the protein in your old food chicken? What about the new food? If you’re not feeding chicken now, try eliminating the chicken & rice that you prepare and see if that helps. Food intolerances are tricky to figure out. Mine can’t have fish in any form including fish oil, chickpeas, lentils, beans, garlic or flax. Any of those things could cause him to have strong smelling anal glands. So while the primary animal protein/s could be the problem, it could be something seemingly far more innocuous.


    These are great references! Lily is not free-fed but was when we got her, before she was spayed(or had her anal glands expressed, not sure which) she did not want to eat in the mornings, and was not accustomed to a schedule. We have since been able to transition her to scheduled feeding times, but the first thing we did was make sure she did not eat more that the amount she was supposed to each day. She often ate less than this. I am wondering: is it detrimental to free-feed if the amount the dog eats is controlled? I am not planning on doing it, just wondering.


    In reply to: DinoVite

    Stacey F

    Did you dog have any issues when you first started feeding Dinovite. My minpin became extremely constipated and his anal glands blew up. Our shih tzu developed an eye infection. Just wondering if we should stick with the very expensive product.


    Hi Dori,

    I hope I didn’t come across as rude, that was definitely not my intent!

    My point was that I frequently hear, from lots of folks, that allergy / intolerance, yeast or skin issues can be helped by fish based foods. I think that for many dogs that don’t have an intolerance for fish, that may well be true. Heck, if you search limited ingredient foods on any of the pet food shopping sites, you’ll find lots of them are fish based or have fish meals or fish oils added for the omega 3’s, and its often stated that it’s for skin and coat health. I wish Sam could eat fish, because he could surely benefit from the omegas. I think fish intolerance / allergy isn’t terribly uncommon, as far as those issues go.

    I’m trying to find some kibbles Sam does well on before I start adding an algae oil to his food. He is not a fan of raw and I’m having trouble with canned foods as a result of his sensitive tummy. He does like raw, green tripe, so that’s one of the few toppers I use. In addition to fish, he can’t have garlic, flax, chickpeas or lentils. He also gets fresh eggs at least a couple times per week.

    He does great on Nature’s Variety Instinct LID Duck – he likes it OK. He did fine on California Natural Lamb and Rice, but he didn’t really seem to care for it. And, while I hate to even admit that I tried it, he did well on, and liked, Canidae Pure Sky; although his anal glands started smelling a little strong near the end of the bag, his ears started clear. Right now, we’re in the process of trying Go! GF Turkey, and I’m really hoping this works. In the past, he hasn’t done well on foods with lots of fruits and veggies and this food has them. And, the Go! contains lentils, but they’re pretty far down the list of ingredients and the fiber is within a good range for him; so I’ll see pretty quickly if it gives him gas. I have big bags of NVI LID Turkey and Duck on deck to use next, or in case we have to make a quick departure from the Go!

    I’m constantly searching for foods for him. I get a little frustrated at the lack of options for him. I wish that limited ingredient foods contained only one animal protein.

    Thanks for asking, Dori! Sorry for the hijack, Lori!


    Hi BRT. I had a dog once that always bit her nails. I didn’t give it much thought really. I just thought, well people bite their nails so why not dogs. The vet at the time had no suggestions as he’d never had a dog that bit their nails. Anyway, long story short. For other reasons I switched my dogs to grain free, corn free, white potato free, soy free, poultry (all fowl) free. Of course, any and all issues cleared up but it wasn’t until a long time later that it occurred to me that that dog I hadn’t seen her bite her nails in the longest time. So I looked at all her nails and sure enough, she had stopped.

    As to the anal glands. That’s also an allergy issue. I went on line to check out the Wellness Bars that you give them and they contain grains so maybe give them something else instead. Carrots, string beans, a little apple (without the skin), fresh veggies and fruits are great for treats. That’s what I give all my dogs.

    If it were me I would make sure to feed a grain free, also free of all the things I mentioned above. No more Wellness Bars. Also as to the aggression. There is some theory that was out there in the universe somewhere (Melissa knows about these theories lol) that white potatoes may feed aggression in some dogs. Is it true???? Who knows???? But it’s worth a shot. You never know.

    A lot of what you’re saying really sounds like it’s being fueled by intolerances to what he’s eating. Definitely. Same for the nail biting. Food intolerance and stress. Food intolerances also may one stressful. This I know to be true because I myself have food intolerances and when I start getting really stressed or just downright unpleasant to be around I can almost always track it back to something I ate that I shouldn’t have.


    BRT- Dogs usually lick their butts and scoot when there is a problem-such as anal glands or worms. Paw/nail bed fixation tends to be allergies. Imagine an itch that you can’t scratch-kind of sucks, lol. I would make sure that he is worm free and his anal glands are not a problem. Tapeworm can not be seen on a fecal, so check around his butt very very carefully for anything that looks like hard dried up rice-those are the worm segments. You can try rinsing his feet to see if that helps-the other option, if the vet has already looked at him and said no issue-is to try a squirt of an anti chewing spray. If its merely behaviorally, he should stop after a few licks of bitter apple or something of that nature.


    Hi BRT, I never knew about expressing dogs anal glands until I rescued Patch 20 months ago, when I first got him he was always scooting along the carpet, at first I thought worms so I wormed him again, then vet said anal glands need expressing, Patch would have his anal glands expressed every 2 months by the vet, then in March I started to give Patch Boiled Chicken breast with boiled pumkin for breakfast cause of his Pancreatitis, I give Tuna in spring water drained & pumkin now, but since starting him on the boiled pumkin back in March he stopped scooting along the carpet & I havent needed to take him to the vet to express his anal could always try some pumkin & see if it works..also 1 month ago I started feeding Patch “Wellness Simple” Duck & Oatmeal kibble & Patches poos are more firmer then when he eats his Vet prescription Eukanuba maybe you’ll need to change their diet…


    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems

    Elisa C. R

    Hi everyone!

    I have been having problems the past few days with my dog Zoey. I went out of town last Sunday, she was fine with the pet sitter Sunday-Monday. However on Tuesday and Wednesday, she pooped in her kennel and got it all over her and her blankets. This is NOT like her AT ALL! She is house broken, and I have never had the problem the entire 8 months that I have had her. (she is about 9 1/2 months old). The vet thought it was due to her routine being disrupted with me being out of town and she was stressed. I returned last Thursday night, and noticed some blood in her stool. I looked at her anal glands and very red and swollen. She has been “leaking” on the blanket the past few nights. I called the vet today and she said that she might have a possible anal gland rupture. (her stools have been soft on/off for the past month – after swimming in a creek – fecal came back fine). She is eating Dr. Tim’s grain free food, and her stool was great with it until the creek incident. I am taking her to the vet this afternoon to get her checked out. My girl is very sensitive for sure, since I brought her home in January, she has had mites (inherited from her Mom – had to be dipped once a week for 5 weeks), incision where she was spayed came open (dissolvable stitches) hookworm from walking daily in the city park, skin rashes, and now the issue with her anal glands. Hoping for the best, I will keep you posted. Glad this forum is here, a great help!


    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems


    After I brought my Newfypoo puppy home I realised that he was having anal gland problems – which was super gross for me to find out about. I tried to call groomers to ask about expressing his glands, but no one would do a puppy.

    I read stuff online and found out about pumpkin puree. You have to be careful and not by the sweetened canned stuff that people use for pies. You have to make sure it’s simply pumpkin puree. I gave him a tablespoon that day and I can say that I was amazed with results. The nasty smell, the itching, biting all went away by the next day. So, I continued feeding him a tbsp of pumpkin puree everyday for about two months. He loved the stuff, licked it right off the spoon.

    I stopped cos I ran out and then I realised that he was now expressing his glands on his own. But I always have a can handy just in case. I even gave some to my neighbour once for his little dog and it worked for them as well. I only hear good things as far as I see it no harm in trying.

    His poop didnt get fixed with the pumpkin puree though – for that I had to start giving him digestive enzymes with his food.


    Hi, Betsy. It very well may be seasonal….Laverne has started with some itching and anal glands again, even though her stool is normal!? She was just at the vets this past Thurs. because I noticed a bump on one of her front legs. The vet expressed her glands and said they were bad, ugh. Vet said it’s probably staph and could even be caused by shampoo being left on and not drying properly or fully (this was said because of where the infection is located). She gave me some muricin salve to rub on the bump. But I may call and get an oral antibiotic for her, as well. Don’t usually like them but want to be sure this doesn’t turn into something even more difficult. Laverne is mine that has allergies, of course, and who snores a lot. She also does reverse sneezing at times. She has a murmur, about 3-4/6, (came on about 2 years ago) but doesn’t cough . Her nose runs sometimes (again allergies). She is eating Wellness Small Breed Simple for kibble and Wellness Stews or Weruva or Simply Nourish for canned topper. I have been giving the Firm Up, but was wondering if she has become intolerant of it? It could be lots of things. I do also give them coq10 3 times a week (30 mg). Right now I decided to not change anything in her diet except removing the Firm Up for awhile, and switching probiotics up. Hazel was checked as well and the vet could barely hear her murmur and rated it a 1/2…..she’s had a murmur since birth with no meds. She has no symptoms of anything and doesn’t snore at all. Rupert, who is on enalapril twice a day and has heart disease (MVD) and a grade 5/6 murmur is doing great. He snores occasionally but not that bad and does not cough at all. He has no other symptoms. I would say this is probably seasonal, but if I were you, I would have your vet or Cardiologist (if you have one) check things out thoroughly. I don’t want to scare you, but I think these things can come on suddenly. According to Rupert’s breeder his came on suddenly, but not really sure…maybe just wasn’t caught before now. I also decided to not really try to reduce the sodium (just making sure it’s not on the too high range). Like I said before, the only heart supplement I have been using regularly is coq10. You could also try adding other things, like fish oil, hawthorne, l-carnitine, coq10 and of course taurine, if you’re not doing so already. There are some all inclusive supplements like Bio-Cardio by Thorne, Vetri-Science Cardio Strength. Also Standard Process Cardio is one my vet likes (but they always prescribe Standard Process). I’ve used the all inclusive ones in the past, but recently have been trying to keep things as simple as I can. I’ve probably not answered your question but hope I’ve helped some.

    • This reply was modified 7 years, 2 months ago by Mom2Cavs.
    Brenda M

    Hi there. I have a 4 yr old Cavalier King Charles/Papillon mix. He’s been on California Natural Grain Free Venison for a couple years & was doing great on it. And now California Natural has changed the ingredients on this food. We’ve tried other foods b/c of recalls, etc. I’ve found that my dog is sensitive to certain dog foods, his stool gets soft if the food is too rich, possibly high in protein (Acana, Orjien, Blue Buffalo Wilderness). Soft stool then seems to cause issues with his anal glands not emptying as they should. The new formula for CA Natural is making the stool softer. Anyone have any recommendations? He isn’t a picky eater & while I’ve always gave him grain free, I really have no reason for that…

    Thank you!

    Michelle B


    I have a 3 year old lab/hound mix who chews his feet raw, needs me to express his anal glands manually monthly, is prone to ear infections, and commonly has dandruff. I have concluded this is due to food allergies (his littermates have diagnosed food allergies). I know I should get it officially diagnosed, I just want to do my own research before I have a vet tell me to buy Royal Canin or Hills for money making purposes.

    Here’s my dilemma:
    He has eaten lamb and rice food, chicken and potato, and now salmon and sweet potato. I have revisited previous ingredient culprits in the “grain free”, “filler free”, and “no by-product” versions no avail. I want to avoid hydrolyzed foods as long as possible because I’m just not comfortable with the high level of processing and chemicals.

    Should I try a holistic kibbles made from kangaroo (etc), attempt a raw diet, or just cut to the hydrolyzed chase?

    Also, if I start a raw diet, should I avoid previous allergens, or should I revisit them in hopes that naturalness of it would avoid a reaction?

    Thank you so much!


    Some dogs just have chronic problems with their anal glands and require regular expression, Some have a problem once, they get expressed and all is right in their world forever. If he was scooting, expressing them was the right thing to do. If left untreated, there is the potential for them to completely impact and then “explode”-they basically abcess and then drain. Nasty for the dog. My doxie had the problem once in her life when I fed her raw for three days straight without sweet potato for fiber. Vet drained them, she did the licking thing, caused her butt to get red and puffy, so the vet rxd gentamycin spray. Problem done and over in 24 hrs. Don’t sweat the small (smelly) things, lol ๐Ÿ˜‰



    Yeah, it was his longest diarrhea yet… 4-5 days. He did eat little on Friday, and not at all on Saturday of last week – he may have not felt very good… After that I added plain brown rice with some boiled fish meat – no help. I tried bread (pita is what I had available) and it helped! He had bread for 2-3 days (not JUST bread except for his first feeding – the next were his kibble mixed with THK as a topper and bread). Those helped him keep it all down and not go as often, and gradually firmed up his stool. He has been good since Tuesday, off bread, and on his normal food.

    And yeah, we can call and ask the guy, but I doubt he would have noticed… He is not as intuitive with his dog it seems and is kind of like “well, he’s a dog, dogs smell and eat whatever and are fine”… Plus he feeds Pedigree (yuck), no wonder his dog smells… But we could try… I’m just happy he’s over it!

    And oh, I really hope his glands don’t get inflamed from the expression and scooting or something, and I hope it is just cause it was a new procedure/feeling for him.

    Would you or anyone know WHEN is it a real time/need to get your dog’s anal glands expressed?


    They’re probably just irritated from the expression.

    Just to be safe, I might check with your friend to be sure that there’s nothing going on with their dog as well. Three days of diarrhea from one small dietary indiscretion seems like sort of a long time for a dog with an otherwise healthy gut.

    I really doubt having his anal glands expressed will hurt anything long term. He’ll be just fine in no time.


    I’ve never had my dogs anal glands expressed.

    When Sam, my Golden with food intolerance issues, has a reaction to a food he’s eaten, his anal glands will start to smell strongly and sometimes he’ll have some loose stool. He’s even scooted a couple of times. Even with that, once the offending food is removed, the situation seems to correct itself fairly quickly.

    My guess is that the diarrhea caused the anal glands to become a bit inflamed and probably would’ve resolved fairly quickly on their own when the stool returned to normal. I would probably add a little bulk to his stool with some chia seed or pumpkin or try some THK Perfect Form or Firm Up! You could also try some raw meaty bones; ie: a chicken wing for dinner. The inclusion of some bone usual helps stool firm up, too.

    Are you certain the diarrhea was caused by something he ate off of the ground?


    Hey, all!

    So… Today Bruno had his anal glands expressed for the first time. He had been kind of licking at and trying to get to his butt for about a week so I figured, it must be a routine thing, right, so I took him in to have them expressed. Well, afterwards he kept his tail down for a bit and after he pooped he scooted twice on the ground and once at home on the carpet. No traces or anything, anus looks good, no straining while pooping, he is his usual self. Tail is up again. But the scooting. He was not doing it before, he would just suddenly sit and try to lick his butt during walks, or he would turn and try to get to it that way… And now he is… ๐Ÿ™

    Should I not have had his glands expressed? Is scooting on the day of expression normal? Did I ruin it for him? Of course, post factum I saw a youtube video saying that if “it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” referring to anal glands, and that once they are expressed for the first time, you always have to do it every few weeks… Did I read the “signs” wrong? Will he be ok?

    Ysabella J

    Hey everyone,

    I have a 3 year old, 65 pound Golden Retriever. For about the past 4 months or so I have noticed her licking her behind a lot more than usual. I would say about 3-4 days out of the week and usually when it happens it is multiple times during the day. I know that she is licking back there due to anal glands because every time she does it, out comes the nasty smell.. I took her to the vet, they expressed her anal glands and said they were small, nothing abnormal about them.. She had never had this done before. Well 2 days after I brought her in she started licking again. I started adding pumpkin to her diet regularly with no help. She is fed Orijen kibble & Merrick canned food for breakfast and Stella & Chewy’s raw for dinner. I haven’t switched her diet in over a year. I am really not a big fan of bringing her in every 3 weeks to get her anal glands expressed after reading an article published by Dr. Becker. She doesn’t scoot at all whatsoever, it’s just the licking… I can’t find much information about this online, so now I am here.

    Anyone have any advice? I am open to anything… Thanks in advance!!

    Veronica D

    Does any one use SoJo’s? If so what is your opinion of this food. I have been feeding my 5 Cavaliers this food for years. I cook chicken breast for the protein to go with it. Lately all of their anal glands have been really hard to express. They said that they are very hard, thick substance. The doctor said it’s probably the food that I feed them. I have also thought I was feeding them good. Any thoughts???

    Thanks Ronnie


    Hi Abby, he may have IBS, my boy has IBD, I resuced him about 19months ago, Patch is also a stress head, so maybe this has something to do why they get IBS, Patch also has been on the Metronidazole a couple of times in the begining & had anal gland problems, vets put Patch on the Eukanuba Intestinal in the end, since being on the vet Diet Eukanuba he’s been doing real good, his anal glands dont need expressing by vet no more….when I tried to change his kibble last December I didnt realise that he cant handle too much fat, Ive found if the kibble is around 10%-12% fat he’s Ok, no diarrhea, also I have to keep him on a lower protein kibble & the Eukanaba Intestinal low residue is 23% protein 10% fat & 1.75% fiber, I think in America you have the IAMS but the ingredients are different to the Eukanuba has no by-products & lower fat & lower fiber then the Iams low residue kibble..I’d try the vet prescription, if you cant get Eukanuba Intestinal then the Royal Canin low fat is similar with fat% Protein % & fiber %.. Ive had to have Patch just on the Eukanuba for around 6 months, no treats nothing else, just his Intestinal kibble, vet said his bowel needs to rest & heal then when his poos were excellent.. I started to sooooo slowley tried now foods, also Wellness Simple is good with Limited ingredients, I’m slowley adding the Duck & Oatmeal kibble with his Intestinal the fat is 11% protein is 19% Protein is a bit low but if he doesnt get sloppy poos or diarrhea thats excellent, I also give him a small tin of tuna in spring water drained then mixed with about 2 big tablespoons of pumkin for breakfast, next week Im going to add a boiled egg to the mix as I half the mix for the next morning aswell..the Tuna & egg will boast his protein a bit more, I also use a good dog probiotic…Ive read that the prebiotics in the kibbles get damaged from heat & when transported if left in the heat or sun, so ur better off given ur own probiotic awell & a kibble with FOS.. I try not to let Patch stress & keep his routine the same everyday, I feed him the same time everyday, walk him same time, I also take him everywhere with me, well where I can, he loves meeting people..If I change something in his day, Ive noticed he’ll be real whinging & have his pain that night & next morning.
    In Australia the Wellness dog kibbles are dearer then the vet prescrition diets, I dont know why, I pay $32 for 2kilos of the vet Eukanuba Intestinal & the Wellness Simple is $37 for only 1.8kilos…try to make him feel secure & in time he’ll learn to trust again, when I first got Patch he wouldn’t let me out the front door without crying & whinging, then he learnt that she just going shopping so when he sees my shopping bag he knows she’ll just be about 20min & she’ll come back & I give him his second bit of breakfast, I break Patches meals up into 5 meals a day, I found he couldnt stomach real big meals at once…its sad alot of these rescues have had it hard, not all, my last rescue was healthy wasn’t nervous but she was younger… Patch is 5 years time things do get better.


    Bobby dog-
    Again, thanks. And to whoever asked, YES, I’ve used Fresh Pet. I really ( I mean my dogs, lol!) like it! But truth of the matter, I did taste it. It was not yummy to me. I just have a lot of canned and Honest Kitchen on hand to use up, otherwise I’d stick in my topper rotation. Never tried it with the cats, however. I should though. It’s just so frustrating when they turn their noses up. I always have to make sure the thyroid girl gets enough food.
    So, I think my Buhner dog will be fine. They thought there might be something in his throat. But the X-Ray showed a lot of inflammation, but nothing stuck. He probably chewed up or ate something he shouldn’t have and scratched him all up. His teeth and gums were fine. They gave him an anti inflammatory shot. He was so good with the vet! Except he did express his anal glands on the wall when they were getting the X-ray! Oops! I hand fed him some canned tonight and he started eating a little. Hopefully whatever it was came out one end or the other already. My 19 year old son is out of school now and doesn’t keep a great eye on the dogs during the day thanks for asking!


    Hi, Cavvie lovers! I have 3 of this beautiful breed. I have Laverne, a Ruby retired show champion who weighs around 17 lbs. and tends to have mild intolerances and trouble in the past with anal glands. She is 9 yrs. and has a murmur according to my holistic vet. No meds, though. She’s lived with us for 3 years now. Hazel is my 7 year old Black and Tan who weighs around 19 lbs., all muscle. She was born with a murmur but has never had meds. She’s been with us for 5 years. She and Laverne are registered therapy dogs. My newest is Rupert, a 7 year old Blenheim retired show champion who weighs around 19 lbs. I’ve had Rupert for 3 months now. He has a grade 5 murmur and MVD, asymptomatic, however he is on enalapril twice a day. Now that his health is pretty good for him (he came to me not so healthy) I plan on making him a therapy dog, as well.

    I had to try many foods due to Laverne’s intolerances, which started with loose stool, rumbly tummy, not wanting to eat at times and of course the dreaded anal gland issues. We are finally (hope I don’t jinx us, lol) doing great with Wellness totally. I’ve always used Wellness cans and biscuits/treats but their kibble size was just too big for them, especially Laverne who I needed it to work for the most. So I used others, like Acana Singles, Merrick, Instinct LIDs, Zignature, Annamaet, Dr. Tim’s, Victors and probably others I’ve forgotten about. Some worked and I’ll still feed if needed…Annamaet, Dr. Tim’s and Victor, but a lot of others didn’t. I even tried premade raw, which was fine but too hard for my household to deal with. Foods like THK didn’t go over well. However, recently Wellness came out with new Small Breed formulas…YAY! So I tried them. I now rotate through Small Breed Senior, Small Breed Whitefish and Small Breed Simple Salmon along with their canned Stews for topping kibble and Yogurt biscuits for bedtime snack. I use their Pure Bites for training. Things are great, atm!! I do add a probiotic/enzyme supplement and a fiber supplement called Firm Up with each meal. It’s simply dried pumpkin and apple pectin. They also get coq10 for their heart. This has been working for us for 2 months now and I will continue this regimen. Sometimes I will use other canned toppers, like Simply Nourish, Fromm or Weruva for variety. All 3 have such soft wonderful coats and great skin. I did shave them down a little for the first time this summer and can honestly say that I love the haircuts! I kept their ears and tails long. I will keep them cut this way. I hope some of this info. gives hope for you guys with other Cavvies, my heart breed! ๐Ÿ™‚ <3

    • This reply was modified 7 years, 4 months ago by Mom2Cavs.

    In reply to: Chi pups soft stools


    I agree with theBCnut. I also found a supplement I love, called Firm Up. It’s just dried pumpkin and apple pectin. You can get it with cranberry, too. Love it!! So much easier to use than canned pumpkin, which mine didn’t care for in their food. They eat this up, though. I won’t ever be without it. It has been a life saver for anal glands, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Sukh K


    Mine is an year old, 100 pounds, not neutered, male Presa Canario we call BUGGA. I got him when he was 8 weeks and he has been on a raw based diet ever since. I was feeding him Healthy Paws (Canada) chicken, turkey, beef on a regular basis with bison and venison every two months (since those were more expensive). Within four months, he and my cats would not eat anything except beef. (Note: They had all rejected Salmon since day one) Later a different brand supplier told me that Healthy Paws adds some beef related fillers in almost all of their products and that could be one of the reasons that they had become addicted to beef and my cats still are to this day (they really haven’t had anything except beef for 7 months now, I’m not sure how healthy this is for them).

    After two months of continuous beef, Bugga got sick and I still have no clue what had happened (my vet couldn’t determine exactly). He had gas issues and would throw up every three days, along with this constant smell which I suspect was the anal glands. He wouldn’t eat properly but was otherwise his usual self. The vet, although, a raw diet enthusiast, suggested that some dogs don’t do well on Raw and that I change his diet for a few weeks. I started feeding him Royal Canine wet food cans and his stomach/intestinal issues seemed to be curbed. After two weeks of this, I gradually put him back on Raw and to my relief he wasn’t just a beef addict anymore. He was more than happy to gobble up whatever came his way.

    But in a month again, he had become picky and seemed bored with his food. He would eat some days and then not at all. He ate people food nonetheless, rice/cottage cheese/yogurt/cheese slices/loves flat-bread. I alternate between brands (Bold Raw and Naturaw) to keep him interested, even switched to hormones and antibiotics free products, added green tripe and raw eggs, used probiotics, digestive enzymes, omega 3-6-9 oils, vit E oil, diatomaceous earth, organic pumpkin and sweet potato, coconut oil, kelp mix.

    Now, I have had to mix in Kibble (Nature’s Variety Grain free)! He ate the raw food with kibble for a week or two, I haven’t bought more kibble. He can go hungry for a day but not eat any more raw and then reluctantly eat it to satisfy the hunger. I really want to help him and give him what his body wants, but I am so lost now. I don’t know how to get him excited about some good raw food again. I want to know if I feed him kibble or other canned food for a while, is it possible that he doesn’t go back to raw at all. Has anyone else faced something similar with their dog?

    Raffaele C

    I have been feeding both my dogs raw food for a while now and they have been doing great on it. But lately my groomer has been telling me that she had to express their anal glands because they were filling up. Their stools are not always hard but it’s never diarreha either; it’s in between. I’m guessing though that their stools should be firmer to help express the glands naturally. I was reading some other posts on the forum and some suggested Glandex so I was thinking about that. But my main concern was that I don’t want to buy a bunch of supplements when I thought that a raw diet should be providing the proper nutrients for my dogs to thrive. So before I go buy a supplement for this issue or start feeding pumpkin regularly, I just wanted to ask you all about your experiences with raw diets. Does a raw diet typically cause softer stool? Is chicken a factor?


    I have two rescue pups (one chihuahua and one American Eski/Rat Terrier Cross). Both have been on raw since November.

    My Eski has several food intollerances, so when we started him on raw we started him with Rabbit only for two months and then I started to add one new protein a month (alternating each day) to make sure that we were isolating which proteins are not working for him (he will have seizures if he has beef, chicken or salmon). He has done well on all the “white” meats that I have added, but red meats cause his to have VERY LOOSE stools. So loose that he can’t expel his anal glands, and that has got us into some trouble. In the past week I took him off all red meats (so far he has tried kangaroo and lamb) and put him back on only rabbit for a week. His stools returned to normal, so I added added Cornish Hen back in. All good. Since his digestion seemed to have returned to normal I thought I’d try him on a lamb neck slice, but sure enough he had the runs that night.

    My question is:

    1. Does anyone else have this probem?

    2. Is it OK to feed only white meats for him? I thought it was the bone content in the white meats I was feeding, but lamb necks have a good bone content and he still ends up with the runs.

    My chihuahua eats anything and everything and has perfect stools without fail. I feel so bad for my Eski!


    Sarah Y

    I give blue buffalo freedom (also grain free) to my beagle. He has anal gland issues and I found he does better on the freedom food. He also eats this food each and every time. I have given him Merrick, Innova, and Wellness. Innova made his anal glands worse and he was a little picky over the Merrick and Wellness. I love both of those brands though!

    P.S. edited to add: Sharyorkie, the freedom isn’t high in protein and is a grain free food

    • This reply was modified 7 years, 5 months ago by Sarah Y.

    Luckily her anal glands never smelled. She would just lick the base of her tail.On Orijen she really didn’t just eat it I had to add enticers. Maybe that was part of the problem, constantly adding other things to get her to eat. Stella and Chewy’s firmed her up,maybe because of the bone in it. Just recently switched her to Farmina N&D and she seems to enjoy it and it has psyllium, so far so good.


    It wouldn’t hurt to try a bit of extra fiber in the diet. Plain canned pumpkin is a good source as well as ground chia seed or psyllium. You could even use plain Metamucil.

    While it could be a fiber issue, it could also very well be an allergy issue. I have a pup with some intolerances and smelly anal glands are always a big red flag that he’s reacting to something. I would investigate any possible food intolerance issues right away.

    Was she having any problems when she was eating the Orijen or has it just been since the switch? Remember intolerance can be to proteins or other ingredients. There are foods that are high histamine that produce the same type of response. I have a friend whose dog cannot eat anything with tomato.

    Marietta B

    My dog was having her anal glands expressed every few months. Along with anal gland problems, she had allergies. I never connected the two until I read an article in Dogs Naturally magazine. I finally found out that she was allergic to chicken and since removing chicken from her diet her anal gland problems are gone. It has been 8 months since she had them expressed.


    I’ve never had a a dog with anal gland problem until now, when I first got Patch over 1 year ago, he was always rubbing his bum & gliding along the carpet, I thought he had worms, then the vet said its his anal glands & expressed them, she’d do it every 2 months, but the last month & a half Ive been giving Patch pumkin mixed with his chicken for breakfast & he’s stopped rubbing & gliding along the carpet. I never knew about pumkin so it has helped him..

    Karene H

    Hi, My guy is 10 years old now, and we have had lots of problems with his anal glands. They were impacted when we adopted him at 3 years old, and last year one abscessed and he developed a really nasty anti bacterial resistant infection that took a month and a really expensive drug to treat. You have to be really careful and vigilant. The only thing I have found to work for him is lots of fiber in his diet. The pumpkin didn’t work as well for him. His vet likes to add green beans to her dogs’ food, I make most of his food and add lots of veggies. Maybe your girl would eat carrots or something, as a snack, or you can add some veggies to her food. Good luck to you.

    Sarah Y

    I hear you….I sent an email hoping to get answers. I’m hoping I just got a bad rep on the phone. I want something in writing.

    So far it seems their current food wellness complete senior is the the lowest of the phosphorus that i found. It’s 3 stars. I do wonder if it led to one of my dogs excessive pooping and anal gland problem. First time she has ever had her anal glands expressed. They have been on it for about a year and a half. Could just be age. That’s why I was looking for something else.

    Sarah Y

    Besides protein differences, are there are other differences in senior versus adult food?

    I have two senior beagles…both are within normal weight range but it’s a struggle. They get some excercise with a 15-20 minute walk in the morning and a 30-45 minute walk in the evening…every day (unless it’s pouring down rain). My 10 year old, 22 lb beagle was just diagnosed with a luxating patella. I was shocked as all her vet checks have never shown this problem. The vet said it’s possible it was undetected due to muscle mass and as they get older they lose muscle mass.

    They eat Wellness senior dog food because the 10 year old had some abnormal kidney values a couple of times and her urine specific gravity can be low at times due to how much water she drinks (she has always been that way). So I chose wellness for the low phosphorus level (.75). The vet thinks she may have some renal deficiences so her take is to be cautious and keep an eye on it.

    I was considering a change to blue wilderness senior as it’s grain free and higher in protein. The red meat formula has .7 phosphorus and the regular senior has .9. Any thoughts on this? As fo rmy other beagle, she’s 37 lbs and her only health issue is an autoimmune disease that affects her nails. Oh and the 10 year old recently had full anal glands. Just though I would mention that.

    If you would prefer I start another thread, just let me know. Thank you…


    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems

    Jackie L

    I have a 7 year old Bernese Mountain dog (Jax) who has had to have his anal sac glands drained by his vet every 5-6 weeks for years now as the vet said they are not draining naturally. Since he was 3 his vet has had him on Royal Canine Joint and Bone formula as he has bad hips and knees.
    Now it seems that the vet is having a difficult time draining his glands and she needs to use a special instrument (costing double the $$$$) in order to drain and has now recommended surgery to remove the glands. I am having a very hard time understanding why now would this be necessary after all these years ??? So I am researching the web and came across this great forum. Our vet never mentioned to us changing his diet to a grain-free high fiber diet nor has she mentioned trying green beans, pumpkin or sweet potato to help naturally harden his stools. He doesn’t scoot and he doesn’t smell – but seems they do not empty on their own and the vet says they will absess if not drained.
    So before I see our vet tomorrow – I am wising up and looking into my own solutions for my Jax. Can anyone recommend a good grain-free high fiber dry dog food that I can start him on ?


    After many trial and error attempts, we found a great food for our little sensitive mutt-but one issue: bad breath. Sammy loves his food, and I add a bit of flax seed powder to it for fiber (keeps his anal glands clear). I’ve always added flax to his food, so I can’t blame the flax seed…the only thing I can think of that’s different is medication he’s on (zonisamide and azathiaprine) which the vet said shouldn’t have anything to do with his breath, and the food switch almost a year ago now. Sam has a seizure disorder and he gets blood labs every 2 months, and his blood work is great. His checkups have been great, and the vet says his teeth look good. I brush his teeth, he has nylabones and chews a lot, and he has all natural dog breath tablets. NONE of this helps at all. Has anyone else noticed this with Acana (duck and pear) or with high protein food? His breath smells straight up like a fishing pier-like rotting fish.


    Hi all,

    I’m new here, was just looking for a dog forum that encompasses health and diet and had a number of raw feeders so hopefully I’ve come to the right place.

    My dog’s name is Dacey, she is a coming 13 year old miniature smooth Dachshund.

    Earlier this year she was very “off”.. depressed, lethargic and seemed to be in some sort of discomfort. Her poops were very abnormal ( mostly very thin, or absolutely FULL of hair). But after she passed a few hair balls she was back to her normal self after a few days. Then, about a month later, she had a mysterious front leg lameness(she wouldn’t put any weight on her right front) that also went along with her not pooping for almost 2 days. When I took her to the vet and we determined there was nothing obviously wrong with her leg, but her anal sacs were full.. he dealt with those and voila, she can walk again! LOL. But her poops still aren’t entirely “normal”. She is still having intermittent narrow poops, or very dry “pellet” poops, or very mucusy wet poops, and she still has a lot of hair in them! (im guessing she must be picking it up off the floor, but it’s still weird cause some poops are really full of it and I have never seen her walking around eating things off the floor, so she must be doing it when I’m not home? ) She is raw fed… I’ve been trying to make sure she isn’t getting too much bone material in her food because that definitely causes very dry hard poops. Years ago when she was kibble fed I had to make sure she was getting a high fibre diet because her anal glands would randomly leak if she didn’t get at least 5-7% fibre. But she also pooped 3-4 times a day with that diet. Now she only poops once a day most of the time, and they are much smaller and harder, but she doesn’t have the anal glad leakage either, actually the opposite problem, her anal gland secretions are very thick and may be blocking her ability to poop properly.

    I’ve also notice she isn’t drinking nearly as much as she used to. At first I chalked it up to the amount of extra moisture she gets from the raw food, and less fibre, but because she is having these pooping issues, I’m not sure she is getting enough water. She used to drink tons, I’d always have to keep a water dish full in my car for her and now she rarely drinks at all even if we are gone all day on road trips (she is my sidekick, always comes with me for work). When I give her the pinch test her skin isn’t snapping back into place, it hasn’t been for quite a while, but isn’t too bad. She still is full of energy, eats well etc. It’s just the weird pooping issues which makes me think she isn’t drinking enough due to the consistencies. Today I started adding water to her food and will see if that helps. I’m not used to having an older animal who isn’t drinking enough, usually it’s the opposite- Kidney issues and drinking a ton!

    anyone else deal with these issues and an older dog?

    Nicole and Dacey


    Just seeing how the other two members who were facing this problem are doing now? I am also an owner facing the scoot & licking catastrophe. I feel so bad and I don’t want my pup to be in discomfort. I have had her stool tested for worms and any other issues, and anal glands expressed, and the vet said she was healthy! She is a 1 year 3 month pit mix and I have tried her on a lot of different things.

    I am a college student with a second 45 lb dog, an Australian Shepard, so I go through food quickly and don’t think I could afford a pure wet dog food diet.

    My pit mix has been on Natural Balance, I have done Sweet Potato and Fish Limited Ingredient Diet, L.I.D. sweet potato and venison, also served with half a container of beneful wet dog food in her puppy days but she always had to poop up to 4-5 times a day and her stool was very soft with both brands. A neighbor also suggested to me that when her dog was on grain free she noticed very soft stools so I tried to stay away from anything grain free. So I did a total 180 and tried some cheap Pure Balance lamb and brown rice and she did well on that brand but my Australian Shepard did not, but wasn’t comfortable with the poor ingredients so I did extensive research on every ingredient and its benefits, and then spent about three hours in a Tractor Supply co. reading every single nutrition label. (I might be forgetting a brand or two I tried in between, Natural Balance and Pure Balance, soo sorry!) I finally decided on Diamond chicken and rice recipe and the ingredients are all high quality and a 40 lb. bag is only about 30 dollars… However not too long after is when she started scooting and licking. I am pretty sure its something in the dog food, I just need some insight that I am probably just over looking on where to go from here. Maybe its the chicken? I suppose its impossible to tell just from this, I was just hoping to see how the other owners with this issue got it resolved.


    and a special thanks from an uncomfortable Luna Pup!


    In reply to: DOG FOOD ADVICE


    Most dogs don’t have a problem with too little fiber. What you may see is him scooting his butt across the floor. They do this when their anal glands are clogged and not releasing when they poop. If the stool is too small, it doesn’t put enough pressure on the glands to release them, so then you would want to add something for bulk. If it isn’t a problem, then it isn’t a problem.


    Sorry to bring this back from the dead, but I’m having the same exact problems as the original person posted. My beagle mix is now 3 and have yet to find a good food for her. Money is not really a factor for me as long as it’s not outrageous.

    Same exact thing: My dog scoots and licks her paws and butt a lot. Sometimes worse than others. Strangely, she seems to scoot and lick more when she needs to go out. Maybe that’s just me thinking too much into it, but it seems to be the case. She’s had her anal glands expressed many times and had her stool sample tested multiple times. Been to many different vets, they all say she’s healthy.

    Over the past 2 years that I’ve owned her, she’s been on Taste of the Wild, Blue Buffalo, Natural Balance Limited Ingredient, Wellness Simple and more. Some are worse than others. She’s been on Natural Balance LID Duck and Potato for the past 9 months or so because she has been the best on that. By best, I mean not scooting so much that she is in obvious discomfort the entire day and her stool is solid.

    Also, if she has any people food, she scoots and is more uncomfortable than normal for the following few days. This usually happens around holidays or when we have guests over and stuff falls on the floor.

    Any suggestions? This may sound crazy, but should I try her on “regular” food and see how she does? As soon as I got her, I always wanted her on healthy food and I think she’s always been on Grain Free food the whole time. The vets only suggestion was to try allergy testing at this point, since we already tried an elimination diet and everything.


    In reply to: Wellness Dog Food


    Hi Rose, Healthy anal glads empty when a dog has a bowel movement. Unfortunately some anal glands dont work as they should because of inherited malformations or cause of a history of poor-quality foods that produce poor quality bowel movements found in alot of rescued dogs. Why did u change from Natural Balance & why is ur dog on a grain free diet some dogs do better on a grain diet while other dogs do better on a grain free diet. With the Wellness Core original the fat is 16% & the protein is 34% fiber 4%..My boy also has colitis & anal gland problem & has to go vets every 2 months to have them expressed. My vet told me with the colitis he needs a lower fat diet maybe the N/B was lower in fat.. I was going to try the Core original as my boy Patch is on a vet diet kibble & I hate the vet diet foods but the fat is only 10% & the fiber is 1.75% Patch also cant have too much fiber, he’s poos are beautiful & we are not waking up thru the nite with a grumbling tummy with the colitis at the moment.. Maybe try a kibble that is lower in fat but u’ll find the fiber will be higher thats the problem I’m having at the moment finding a low fat & fiber kibble, But ur girl mite be able to handle more fiber… I also found another kibble I like Holistic Select Duck the fat is 13% the fiber is 3.9%. made by Well Pet that makes Wellness Core .Im in Australia we dont have the Natural Balance & some of the other American kibbles.. But ur girl might of inherited the anal gland problems next time ask the vet & see what the vet says…


    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems


    Since I’ve taken Laverne (all 3 dogs) off poultry she’s been doing 100% better. Since I last posted here in August we’ve gone through different dry foods (can’t even remember what all), but currently they’re eating Fromm Salmon a la Veg. It does have some chicken cartilage in it and grains (which don’t seem to be a problem). I’ve been using only canned foods without poultry, as well. I’ve used Wellness a lot, especially their 95% and stews. I have on hand some Simply Nourish Fish & Potato, Weruva Cirque de la Mer, Fromm 4Star Pork and some others that I’ve fed. Also, I’ve noticed that when a food has a lot of peas Laverne has issues, too. I also have been adding in probiotics/enzymes. They get 2 treats a day. One in the morning, Wellness Lamb grain free biscuit, and one during the day, Wellness Pure Rewards Beef. Lucy, who you may have heard has CETL (skin cancer) gets some other supplements. Anal glands and itching have been gone since I’ve changed to this regimen. It might not work for all dogs, but has been good for mine. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • This reply was modified 7 years, 9 months ago by Mom2Cavs.

    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems


    I totally agree with Betsy! Food intolerances often cause anal gland issues and some dogs need higher fiber food to naturally release their anal glands.


    In reply to: Anal Gland Problems


    I adopted a rescue dog the end of June and he has been having anal gland problems on an ongoing basis. He has needed to go to the vet every three weeks to get them expressed and has now been on antibiotics and a steroid for just over a week. He is just under two yrs old and is part papillon and terrier. My vet just mentioned possible surgery to remove the glands if we can’t get them under control. Don’t want to have to put him through that surgery because of the possible outcomes so have been researching changing foods. He gets dry food and I give him a tablespoon of pumpkin and And yogurt every day. He has never had diarrhea And always has firm poop. I am trying to figure out what else I can do to help this problem. Has anyone tried glandex? What about blue buffalo dry food?


    In reply to: Terrible Bad Breath


    Pattyvaughn has some good suggestions. I also have Cavaliers and small dogs are notorious for having bad teeth (not just Cavs) so it can be a constant problem, even shortly after dentals. I have had dentals given to mine off and on and their teeth stay good for only awhile. I do brush their teeth, but admit it’s not as often as I should. They are not good chewers, either, which makes it doubly hard to keep teeth clean :(. As for the breath issue. I have found that when mine eat something they are intolerant to or get into something they shouldn’t their breath smells bad. When anal glands are acting up their breath smells bad. Giving probiotics and enzymes helps tremendously. Also, feeding a high quality food and treats (I’ve actually cut them out 99% of their diet) has helped mine. Currently, I’m feeding Fromm 4Star Salmon a la Veg. Now I do also top their kibble with quality canned food (tblsp.) and mix in their prob/enz. When one of my Cavs had a poop eating problem (enzymes solved this, too, for her) her breath was atrocious! So in a nut shell it could be from:

    1. the food they eat.
    2. anal gland problems (they’re full).
    3. eating things they shouldn’t (like poop or bugs, etc).
    4. having a cracked tooth or something wrong with gums, teeth, etc.
    5. needing a dental (no lie, some dogs need dentals more often, especially small dogs).

    First, I would have your vet inspect your dogs mouth to see if anything is stuck in there, or a cracked tooth, etc. Your vet will probably recommend another dental, which isn’t always feasible at the time. I personally do them either every year or every other year. I don’t like to put my oldies under the anesthesia that often.
    Giving raw bones can help keep teeth scrubbed clean. Brushing their teeth can help a lot. Even trying some of the dental sprays and gels, like Mercola’s, or Tropiclean can’t hurt either. Good luck to you, I know the pains of owning small dogs with bad teeth. I hope this helps some.



    I signed up last night after finding this forum on a search for dog food allergies. Here’s what’s going on with my dog.

    Adopted a miniature schnauzer 8 weeks ago. He had had a UTI right before we got him and so was on Royal Canin’s Urinary SO formula – we got his bag of food when we got him. Then we took him to the vet for a general checkup and bought another small bag there. Everything was fine and he had a lovely silky soft coat. Then took him back to the vet for his 2nd lepto vaccination and bought another bag of the RC, but this time a bigger bag. Didn’t open it right away, as we still had some of the small bag left over (this was about two weeks ago). A couple days after opening and starting the new bag, I noticed the following symptoms (so this was maybe a week ago), increasing in severity:

    – when he’d fart (which he hadn’t really done too much of beforehand), it seemed like it hurt him as he’d turn around and look at his butt and then run away
    – he got a couple small bumps on his back
    – I could smell his anal glands
    – small bumps increased in numbers
    – licking forearms
    – scratching like crazy
    – small bumps turned into open, bleeding sores mostly down his back but now on his nose, in his ears, top of his butt, and I just saw one on the tip of his tail – it seems every time I look at him he has a new one!
    – didn’t want to eat his food

    The first sore appeared Xmas eve, then more on Xmas day. Today I took him to the vet who got a sample of the oozing on his nose and said he had an infection and so put him on prednisone and an antibiotic that is supposed to be geared toward skin infections (don’t have the bottle in front of me).

    When he went off his food Xmas eve/Xmas morning, we fed him turkey (plain) and brown rice. Right after that meal he was itchy right away, so the next meal (Xmas dinner) we gave him turkey only and again gave him turkey only for today’s meals.

    The top of his nose was a matted mess with his whiskers so we cut some off thinking that he was rubbing his nose because the matted hair was bothering him. We’ve given him two oatmeal baths and I’ve put lavender oil on the scabs, both actions seem to soothe him and give him some peace.

    So now some questions:

    1) does this sound like a food allergy
    2) how long is it going to take before he stops feeling so itchy
    3) if he is allergic to an ingredient, how long after he eats will he have a case of the itchies (meaning, do I have to wait days before deciding that something doesn’t work or do the itchies tell me right away)
    4) how often can I give him oatmeal baths
    5) do I need to be feeding him anything else (something to boost his immune system or help with digestion) supplement-wise
    6) how do you decide what to add and when (like potato or pumpkin or yogurt or ??)

    I went out and bought him some Nature’s Variety Instinct LID in Lamb formula – does anyone have feedback on this food? I want to be considerate of his recent UTI issue, but I feel like this acute allergy reaction needs to be addressed first – is there something I should specifically stay away from?

    I’m sure I have more questions that I forgot to ask but will come up later. He’s my sixth schnauzer in my lifetime and most recent dog (other two are rottiexGSD sisters) in my current family of dogs, and I’ve never dealt with anything like this before.

    It breaks my heart to see him in such distress – help!

    Thank you,



    I have cleared up the ear problems with my dauchshund mix with grain free food and ALWAYS rinse her ears out when she gets a bath every 3 weeks or so. Moisture in her ear will cause problems. The rinse I use is from Dr Foster’s and Smith, but you can get same from the vet or PetMeds. Haven’t had an ear flare up in two years now!
    For her anal glands it is about the fiber in kibble. When she starts having a problem, dragging her butt on the ground etc, I add pumpkin or yougart and it works for her.
    She doesn’t eat grains or potatoes. I tried Nutrisca brand and they didn’t like-too much peas. Nutrisource GF lamb was a good food, but started not agreeing after second bag. Currently using Earthborn Meadow and they love it and both my dogs are doing very well. Sample of Earthborn Great Plains for their treat and the love the bison too. I use the tub for a spoon of topper, but remove the whole garbanzo bean, creates gas, whoa,. I might need to add some pumpkin, fiber count is a little low for them.
    Hope this helps!


    I am sorry, I was to lazy to type German Shepherd. Vet sedated Cruz today and flushed his glands, and I am switching him to Earthborn Holistic Coastal Catch Grain-Free as soon as UPS delivers. Using pumpkin and NaturVet Digestive Enzymes with Prebiotics & Probiotics in the meantime. I hope I am on the right path. Fingers crossed that I can pull him out of this and problem will go away. He never acted sick or scooted his bottom, just the smell is how I discovered something not right. Now to keep him away from the horse poop while he is here! Good grief.

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