Anal gland problems occur when our pet’s feces are too soft, and while passing through the glands, do not empty them completely. If the glands produce too much liquid, it can thicken and clog they will become clogged. Dogs and cats have two anal glands beneath the skin near their anus. You will know that your pet is having a problem when they begin to lick themselves frequently and attempt to drag their bottoms along the floor. Luckily for you, this is a situation that you can look after at home! However, if the glands have become infected, which would include signs such as, the glands themselves appearing red or discolored, the animal experiencing severe pain, developing a fever, loosing their appetite and becoming lethargic, it is at this point that you need to get some immediate medical help.
How to Clean Your Pet’s Glands
Here’s how you can clean out the glands yourself. Enlist the help of another person to help hold the pet and make sure that you both change into some old clothing and wear some disposable gloves. Use an old blanket or sheet to lie underneath the animal as the material that is removed from the anal glands will be smelly and can cause stains on carpets etc. Clip away any long hair beneath the tail so that you can see what you’re doing. With one hand, lift the tail way up over the animal’s back so that you can expose the glands (these will be located at 5 and 7 o’clock positions on the anus). You will be able to feel if they are full. The ducts that will actually empty the glands are located a little bit higher at 4 and 8 o’clock. In a milking type fashion, use your thumb and forefinger to squeeze the glands in a C-shaped sweeping movement. The fluid will probably be a dark brown to clear color, however if it is yellow or blood tinted, it is likely that your pet has an infection and should see a veterinarian immediately.
After you have finished, sooth your pet’s anal area by applying a warm, wet cloth to it. Once the cloth cools, warm it again with water and repeat the process for at least ten minutes at a time, three times per day.
In an effort to eliminate problems of impacted glands, there are a few changes that you can make to your pets regular diet. Increase their fiber intake by adding a fiber supplement to the food. You could also offer your pet some fresh vegetables such as Carrots, Cabbage or Celery. However, you should be aware that increasing the fiber in your pets daily diet will in addition to helping them express or clear their anal glands, also increase the size of their droppings.
Continue reading to learn which remedies our readers have tried to help clear anal glands in their pets and let us know which one worked for you!