My 9 month old Red Bone Hound/Lab mix is scooting and biting her booty. My vet told me to supplement her food with pumpkin, but I figured that I could just change her food and solve the problem. She ate Iams when she was younger when this problem started, so I swicthed her to Blue Buffalo grain free puppy. At first Blue worked, nice hard stools, no scooting or biting. But over time her stools loosened up and she is having the same problems again. I am very diligent about not feeding her any grain, and I know she doesnt have worms. Just bought some Earthborn coastal grain free, hope it works. Her sister still eats Iams and has no problems, any suggestions would really help. After reading many, many blogs I just feel lost. The fibre content of Blue is more than Earthborn is that a problem
? Chicken vs fish? Hound Dog Mom help!!!!
Sincerely, Max & Marlowe
One of my Cavaliers (in my avatar pic, Laverne) has anal gland problems off and on. I attribute it to allergies with her. I have taken her, all the dogs, off all poultry. She is now eating for kibble Holistic Select grain free. It is a poultry free, fish based kibble with a pretty decent fiber content at around 6% max, I believe. It does have potatoes, but they don’t seem to be a problem with my dogs. I do top with canned foods and have been keeping them poultry free, as well. So far, I’ve been using Wellness for the majority….95% Salmon or Beef or Lamb, Beef Stew, and Simple Salmon or Lamb. This seems to be working. She hasn’t had any issues since I switched to doing this. I was using Zignature kibble, and will probably keep it in the rotation. I just bought some Big Dog Natural dehydrated raw in beef flavor that I plan on trying in the mix. I also add probiotics and enzymes to my dogs’ food. There are lots of them recommended on this site. Currently, I’m using Wholistic Pet Digest all Plus (or something like that lol!). This is all I do, no other supplements atm. Oh…I almost forgot, I do give a biscuit at night before bedtime. I’ve been using Wellness Lamb grain free or Whitefish (not grain free). Any soft treats given, usually during therapy dog visits, are Wellness Pure Rewards beef. As you can see, I like Wellness hahahaha. 🙂 I’m not saying this regimen would work for your dog, but to think about allergies….perhaps do away with chicken and definitely grains. Go from there. I’ve been battling this with Laverne for awhile now and I feel I finally have a handle on it.
- This reply was modified 10 years, 5 months ago by Mom2Cavs.
If there are a couple of foods she does good on (solid poop), you can rotate between them and switch out before she has a problem. Another option is to add some fiber like ground psyllium to her meals if you don’t want to do pumpkin. You might even supplement her food with some a few medallions of dehydrated raw (like Instinct, Primal, Stella & Chewys, Nutrisca). Sometimes the bone matter helps with formed stools.
I also agree with sandy :).XaMarloweParticipant
Thanks, yeah I heard that eliminating chicken and along with grain can help. If the Earthborn alone doesnt help I’ll probably supplement her food with something before considering a rotating diet. Kinda hoping that I can just find one brand that will help, but who knows. I’ll keep posting for further help, I really appreciate the suggestions just really want to avoid any medical problems in the future.
Rotating foods helps eliminate medical problems in the future. Rotating foods helps the gut to be able to support a wider variety of probiotics, which gives a huge boost to the immune system.
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?
What food are you feeding?
He was on science diet and then switched to simply nourish (chicken and brown rice).
He is just under 14 lbs.
Bless your heart!
I just had to say the irony of posting in the Anal Glad Problems section of the forum, using the name scooter, made me smile this morning!
Truly, I mean no offense. : )
If your little guy were mine, I’d probably switch him to a grain free food with some protein other than chicken. It looks as though the Simply Nourish you’re feeding has a maximum fiber of 5% and the Science Diet may have had around 3%. I was looking at Hill’s® Science Diet® Adult Small Bites Dog Food for a general comparison.
Have you seen any improvement since switching to the Simply Nourish at all?
My Golden was recently having a bit of an anal gland issue and I added some of The Honest Kitchen’s Perfect Form to his food and that seemed to help quite a bit. You can also try some ground organic chia seed or even a bit of Metamucil to see if it helps. It could definitely be a food intolerance issue, and for that reason, I’d definitely switch the food to see if that makes a difference before any further manual expression (which is undesirable) is needed. Oh, and I’d stop the yogurt to see if that might help also.
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.
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. 🙂
- This reply was modified 10 years, 1 month ago by Mom2Cavs.
Just got back from a small, locally owned pet store with good local reviews. I explained scooters problems (The login name is his name and I can bet you can all guess how he got it) And she recommended Acana wild prairie regional formula for him. I purchased a small bag and will see how he does with that she told me to continue to give him the pumpkin as well.
Wish him luck!
I did see that Lucy has been diagnosed with a rare type of skin cancer. I was trying to post on your Facebook page from my new Kindle, but I’m having a heck of a time trying to use that keyboard. I’m so, so sorry to hear about Lucy’s diagnosis.
I have recently been researching supplements quite a bit the last few days and came across Dr. Harvey’s E-Mune support: http://www.drharveys.com/products/show/15-emune-boost-for-dogs; and Nature’s Logic All Food Fortifier: http://www.natureslogic.com/products/cat-products/canine-and-feline-all-food-fortifier-supplement-3/. I picked up some for my dogs for general well-being, but wondered if either, especially the Dr. Harvey’s product, might be beneficial for Lucy right now.
I know this must be very hard for you. You and Lucy are in my prayers.
I do hate to be a downer!
I wouldn’t have chosen a food with chicken. Acana is a great choice, but I believe I would’ve chosen a different protein other than chicken as that’s what you’ve been feeding and it could be wherein lies your problem. If you can, considering exchanging the Wild Prairie for one of the other three Regional selections.Bets175Member
I’m new to this board but find it extremely interesting as i have battled anal gland issues with my German Wirehaired Pointer for quite some time now. Changing foods, adding pumpkin, etc. didn’t do much for her until i purchased Glandex. I’m still on my first bottle of it and give her a teaspoon of the dry powder formula daily and have noticed that the anal gland odor is very rare now and the form of her stool has gotten much better. Currently I am feeding her Nature’s Recipe Venison and Rice…it doesn’t have all the fruits and veggies that some of the other dry dog foods have and for her…less is more!!! Hope this helps.
Betsy Greer….thanks so much for your kind words. Lucy is actually doing quite well, except for the lesions she has on her skin and the baldness that comes with them :(. Lucy has never had skin problems, at all, so this was a shock to see these places on her. I first noticed places by her mouth and under her chin. Then the groomer noticed one on her back when he was blow drying her. Looked like nothing I had ever seen before. My first thought was an allergic reaction to something!? It all started about 2 weeks after I began feeding TOTW Pacific Stream so I actually considered it might be the food, but she had never had allergies in the past…though I know they can come on anytime. It just seemed so odd. I took her to my holistic vets and they really weren’t sure what it could be, either. We took a blood test and it showed slightly elevated kidney levels and slightly low thyroid levels. So….we kinda expected the kidney values with her bladder tumor (she’s had for a year now) and we thought she might be having a skin issue due to thyroid. But the vets had never seen skin problems like hers with thyroid before which is why we opted for biopsies to be sure. They took from 3 lesions, which had worsened and multiplied since the groomer found the one on her back. It came back as canine epitheliotropic T-cell lymphoma or CETL. Very rare cancer, happens to mostly older dogs. Can happen out of the blue, no known cause. Prognosis is poor usually and generally no treatments help. Dogs can live a few months to up to 2 years with it. It all depends on their comfort level and the seriousness of the lesions. She wears a T-Shirt around the house so she won’t bother them. Thankfully, she’s accommodating with that. She still eats great, plays more than the Cavs and is her usual self right now. In fact, Lucy’s is the first case in all the years my vets have been practicing that they’ve seen! So….we are taking it one day at a time. My vet gave me a supplement from Vetri Science called Maitake DMG Pro. They’re chews, which she readily takes (and this is a dog that’s very picky with her treats lol). It is an immune supplement. They’re very new, I can’t even order them yet. I can get it in liquid form right now, though, so I ordered that and I’m hoping she likes it mixed with something. Safflower oil has been known to help some dogs, so I have started with that, too. I’ll keep everyone posted on how she does. Again, thanks for the kind thoughts!
Bets175….Hi, yes I’ve heard of Glandex! In fact, I have a bottle. I bought it when I was dealing with Laverne’s anal gland problems. I admit, though, I haven’t really used it properly so can’t comment on how it works.
Oh Jan! I’m so sorry to hear about Lucy! You and Lucy will be in my prayers. I really hope the Maitake works for her.
Thanks, Pattyvaughn! I hope it works, too! It can’t hurt, though. I wonder if the bladder mass that could not be easily surgically removed due to its location caused her to have this cancer appear? Who knows….everything I’ve read says vets don’t know what causes it. I misspoke earlier, it’s called Cutaneous Epitheliotropic T-cell Lymphoma (CETL). Certainly a shocker for us. She seems to be taking it in stride atm thank goodness. I’m not changing her diet except to add supplements. She’s always had such a beautiful coat and it’s sad to see it looking like it does. She doesn’t seem sick at all and I’m dreading that time, although these dogs don’t die a natural death from this disease. It’s usually a matter of the owner deciding to put down due to the skin lesions becoming so prevalent and the comfort and quality of life for the dog.
Btw, I’m sorry for hijacking this thread…..
- This reply was modified 10 years, 1 month ago by Mom2Cavs.
Betsy… I did think about getting the one without chicken but wanted to see if maybe it was the gluten that he was having issues with through eliminating one thing at a time.
Bets175….glad to hear from someone who is using glandex as I have been thinking about getting it.
Exchanged the chicken for the fish and also ordered glandex. Sure hope the combination works because he finished the second round of antibiotics and the last expression was still a little bloody. That was last wed and he already started scooting. 🙁Jackie LMember
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 ?
I use acana pacifica grasslands. I also use glandex (sprinkle it on food). He has gone from needing to go the the vet from three weeks to between five and six weeks now. He never had any smell but his name says it all.Jackie LMember
Thanks for the insight. I will look into Glandex and let my vet know that I am going to try some home remedy of diet change and glandex for him.BellaBooMember
I have a two year old pit bull mix, named Bella. We’ve been having issues with her glands only recently. I feed her Blue Buffalo Chicken, dry and wet and usually she has firm stool,but recently it’s been soft. I was told try pumpkin and/or Metamucil? She also is on medication for life due to her blood disease she has :/ any ideas?
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. http://www.amazon.com/NaturVet-Digestive-Enzymes-Pets-1-Pound/dp/B009O31QXY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1407154566&sr=8-1&keywords=digestive+enzymes+for+dogsElisa C. RMember
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!crazy4catsParticipant
I’m glad you are taking her to the vet today. Sheesh, she’s been through enough already. I hope they figure out what is going on.
I strongly suggest taking in another stool sample. There are waterborne parasites, such as giardia that can cause intermittent diarrhea.
Good luck!Elisa C. RMember
Hi all, just returned from vet. Zoey does NOT have a rupture, just a very irritated area. Her lip is also infected from licking the area so much, but she now has the “cone of shame” on to get her away from it. I did have a fecal done last month when the loose stools started, and also had one done last Friday, all came back showing no parasites. Her vet told me that they can do a more extensive fecal that is sent off and that anything and everything shows up, more expensive of course, that will be the next step if her stool does not firm up.
So happy she has nothing serious going on. The Cone of Shame is the worst – When Onyx got fixed, the cone caused him more stress than his op did. So we got him an inflatable collar from Amazon. It worked amazingly well. If you are having similar problems try an alternative. She will be happier.CyndiMember
Elisa, try adding some canned pure pumpkin to her food for a little while. That should help firm up her stool.
My boy Leo woke me up with incessant scratching to his right ear this morning, then kept his head cocked to the side while on our morning walk. I looked inside and was shocked to see so much blood. I took him to the vet and she said it only looked irritated, confirming it was the scratching that caused the bleeding, perhaps an allergy, and gave us some ointment. She was about to send us on our way when she asked if I’d like his anal glands expressed since he’d had an issue before. Sure. The right sac was blocked so she had me leave him for sedation and saline injection to break up the matter. Hours later, I’m told it’s completely blocked with too-thick contents and she wants to slice a new opening and insert a drain as she’s afraid it may further expand and rupture. It’s been a LONG and expensive day. My poor Leo. I realize he will need to have at least that right sac removed in the very near future. My late dog, Jake, had both removed and never had another problem. I asked if the ears and anal glands have a systemic connection, she brightened and said there was in fact a doctor who did a study. I don’t know if this is the doctor who did the study, but it’s the info I was looking for and I’m sure it will help a lot of other people looking for answers.
“Atopy and Anal Sac Disease Are the Same”
Anal Sac Disease is in the dermatological category:
And then there’s manual trauma:
“Vets and Groomers, Be Aware of Pet Anal Gland Problems”
(Unnecessary Trauma Through Recurrent Expression of the Anal Glands)
…Which leads me to wonder if anal gland trauma (clogged “trash-bin”) actually causes atopy.
- This reply was modified 9 years, 1 month ago by Charlotte P.
No, but the constant inflammation/irritation causes the anal glands to over produce, so anal gland issues are common with food hypersensitivities and so are ear issues. You may want to look into changing foods.
Strong smelling anal gland and flapping of dirty ears are two of my red flags that my dog is eating to a food.
I can tell you from past conversations, she definitely meant “reacting to a food.”
LOL, Nut! Thank you. Of course you knew that’s exactly what I meant.
I post from a Kindle and this thing has the strangest auto-correct. It could be worse though, like Melissa’s phone.
What foods have you all switched to/had success with? My dogs have always been on grain-free, supplemented with pumpkin and goat yoghurt. Right now I have two, both are rescues… Phoebe is about six years old, she came to me four years ago, and her health is fine except for a reaction to yeast supplements which I tried as a flea treatment alternative (They are both on Comfortis now). Leo, also about six, came to me four months ago and has the anal abscess issues, was underweight, and ended up having TWELVE teeth removed – he was already missing five! Over the years, dry and canned foods I have tried include Natural Balance, Spring Naturals, I and Love and You, Wishbone Lake, and of course, home-cooked meals. Has anyone had success with any of these? How about Orijen, Acana, Blue Buffalo, or Taste of the Wild? Do I need to go raw? For the dry, I had the best outcome with Wishbone Lake.
Thank you, Charlotte, for adopting a senior who was obviously in need of a loving home. 🙂
I’ve had the very best luck, by far, with Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient Diets. I can’t use the NVI LID canned foods, because they contain flax, one of my dog’s triggers. My dog isn’t a fan of raw, which is OK with me for various reasons. Raw is a great way to go if it’s an option for you. Lots of folks have great success with raw for dogs with food intolerance / allergy. It’s OK if you choose another route.
If your pup is OK with peas and tapioca, you’re good to go with the NVI LID There are several proteins to choose from…, our best are duck and turkey. I’m not a fan of the lamb only because the protein is lower and the pea protein higher subsequent to a recent formulation. That said, if lamb was the only option for my dog, I’d use it. NVI also makes a LID with raw boost in the lamb formula only.
I continue to look for other foods to rotate with the NVI LID. I just had another strikeout, so we’re back on the NVI until things stabilize, then we’ll try something else again.
NVI LID is the one my dog does best on too. Mine can eat Annamaet, and some Canine Caviar varieties too.
My dog is dong great with Akana Pacifica. I also give him Glandex. H hasn’t had an anal gland infection in nine months and hasn’t scooted in months. The assistant at the vets office told me that one of the other techs that work there has put her dog on gland ex as well.
My dog also does great with Acana Pacifica and Ranchlands.
I was planning to start Sam on Acana Duck & Bartlett Pear, but he reacted to a new food I was trying (which now causes me to suspect tomato for him, too), so I put him back on NVI LID Duck so he could stabilize before I try something else. If the Acana works, I’ll have three kibbles he can eat (only three) and I’m concerned because all three are duck based.
I did recently pick up some THK Thrive for him, so if he’s OK with that, I’ll be able to add chicken into the rotation.
Wow! Thanks for all the responses!
I’ve never tried Glandex as my dog’s anal gland issues usually are simply food related. When his anal gland start smelling strongly, I know it’s time to switch food; but occasionally, that’s when I’ll also add some Firm Up, a dehydrated pumpkin and apple supplement during the switch to speed the transition up.
Maybe some others who have experience with Glandex will weigh in. I know I’ve heard several others mention having used it.
I definitely think glandex is one of the reasons my dog doesn’t have so many issues with his anal sacs anymore. Wen I travel I board him with a woman who takes dogs into her home and have been using her for over twenty years now. I didnt bring the Glamdex over the last time and was gone for ten days. Even thou I put him back on it when I got home he had issues two weeks after I got back. He has been on it without interruption since then and has not had problems which leads me to believe that the product does what it is supposed to do. Also, I kept him on the akana pacifica and do not use any other kibble as he absolutely loves it!
My feeling is that if I find something that works…don’t change it. 🙂
When Onyx was a puppy (about 3.5 months) I first learn what the anal gland smell is and what it means. I called the vet who said they would express them but it would cost more than a 100 bucks. I called the groomers and they said we don’t do puppies. SO, then I turned to the internet and read that pumpkin puree helps with this problem.
Onyx LOVED the pumpkin. I fed it to him on a spoon and he gobbled it up. The anal gland issue was gone the next time he pooped. Since then, I always have cans of pumpkin puree on hand (this got me into baking with pumpkin too) and once a week I give my dog a yummy treat with a boiled egg and three tablespoons of pumpkin puree.
If I so much as get a whiff of that nasty smell, I bust out my pureed weapon and it’s taken care of right away. I did try the firm up stuff (looks similar to glandex with similar ingredients but is called something different) BUT the price is atrocious. As a poor underpaid and overworked grad student, I’d rather spend a buck on a small can of pumpkin.
I can not say enough good things about pumpkin puree when it comes to anal gland or constipation related problems. OTOH it doesnt work so well on my dog for upset tummy issues. Everyone else that I have ever suggested pumpkin puree to at the park (big or small dogs) all have had similar results. Try it, you won’t regret it at all!Susan JMember
Can anyone in here help me.
My little Bella is a pug/king Charles Cavilier x, since having her spade she has started suffering with anal gland problems. I first took her to the vets to have them done then a week later she was showing the same symptoms so then took her to a groomer who stated they were full again, indeed she was fine when I bought her home but about a week later was showing signs again even though we had put her on a kibble diet with no extra meat. That doesn’t seem to be working either although she does have episodes where she seem s to clear them and the metallic smell goes but only momentarily for a few days before its back again. I’ve read exercise helps but need to find what’s causing this in the first place …..can anyone help me please
When I adopted my dog 1 and 1/2 yrs ago I had the same problems. He had to have his glands expressed every three weeks and he kept getting infections. He has been on akana pacifica and glandex for just over a year and is doing great. Hasn’t had any infections and recently brought him in to that’ve them expressed (8 wks since the last time) and they were clean! So, he has now gone more than three mos with no problems.
I am pretty sure that the glandex is the man reason for his no longer having problems but will continue to use the akana pacifica since it is a high quality food.Bobby dogMember
Adding extra fiber such as plain pumpkin puree’ or even whole green beans have helped my dog when he’s had these issues in the past.
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