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I had to take Daisy into the vet last night because we kept noticing an odor. At first I thought it was related to her past issue with puppy vaginitis and thought infection.

 

The vet said that it was her anal glands and explained that dogs will often excrete due to excitement, anxiety, fear, and even stress.

 

I said to the vet, I noticed the smell around three weeks ago after taking a long trip (2 hours down and 2 hours back) in the car and again about a week later after a second long trip in the car. Daisy hates the car, she becomes very stressed and will often shake. Getting her back into the car once she is out is extremely difficult as she will often place her paws on my arms and pull away from me. The vet said that these two experiences probably cause her to excrete from her anal glands.

 

However, after the vet examined her, she said that one of the glands was empty while the other had thicker fluid in it. The vet said I need to add more fiber to her diet for now by adding in pumpkin or carrots or green beans. She also said Daisy is slightly overweight now (we were told when we first got her that she needed to put on weight as she was way to thin). She weighted in at 35 lbs and is about 21 1/4 inches tall. I think the sudden weight increase is from giving too many milk bone cookies since we were out of her dehydrated chicken pieces used for training. Daisy was in the vet about a month and a half ago and was about 30 lbs. I said to the vet what weight should she be at? Maybe 33 lbs? The vet replied 30 lbs. I thought well wait a minute, she is only 8 months and is still developing. Holding her at 30 lbs doesn't seem right. She has been putting on around 1 lb to 2 lbs a month since the 5 month mark. Any thoughts on this?

 

The other thing that has me confused is if Daisy is on a premium food, does it seem odd that I need to supplement it with more fiber?

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I think the reason may be to add more fiber to the diet because when a dog has a bowel movement the movement of the feces is suppose to express the anal sacs (in the wild this is a way of marking). when the action of a bm is not expressing the sacs they get full and therefore when excited, scared etc. the body excretes the fluid (as opposed to a dog pooping when they are scared nervous etc) and that is why they smell. On the other hand IMO, sometimes it doesnt matter what diet you feed, sometimes you just need monthly anal gland expressing (part of domesticating animals). If monthly or every 2 months of anal gland expressing is not done, sometimes the fluid builds up, hence the thicker fluid, and become impacted or infected and possibly can rupture.

 

I dont know what to say about the weight issue, other than maybe the vet didnt realize she's still a pup?

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About the weight issue, the vet´s idea is not bad. I work in human health care, and with overweight, growing kids it´s a fine slimming regime keeping the individual on his/hers (at that moment too high) weight, letting growth "catch up" until a healthy weight is reached.. You are then replacing fat mass for other body mass (sceletal, muscle etc).

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I don't really agree with adding the fibre to the food to help. Adding fibre will increase stool volume but it will make it softer. Soft stool won't press against the anal glands to empty them, you need a hard stool for that.

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I had never really thought about it as my dogs have always had very firm stools, so I never gave thought to glands, but I practiced on Misty after she started scooting(I am apprentesing to be a groomer) and realzied that hers are terrable! I have been expressing them weekly now and she is really full every time. she never had a problem before and she's 7 years old already, so not sure what changed.

 

I dont see how fiber would help either, fiber just soften the stool, wouldnt that make it worse? lol

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I have been trying to look into this issue some more and everything I seem to find mentions adding fiber to bulk up the stools which confirms what the vet said to do. Right now my best guess is that Daisy's problem started with her anxiety over the two car rides. I think the glands excreted due to the car rides and this was followed by looser stools from all the stress. The loose stool over a number of days is probably what made the one gland too difficult for her to express during a bowel movement....... :rolleyes: a theory anyway since the odor did come shortly after each trip.

 

I think what I will do is give her carrots as training treats in lower value situations, like at home when we are practicing and if I am out and about use the higher value dehydrated chicken pieces for example in class when there are more distractions. I have paid extra attention to how much she has been eating the last two days and she does not seem to be over eating, I think I messed up by too many milk bone cookies when I was out of her training treats. I did reduce her daily kibble (nature's variety instinct) amount to 2 cups instead of 2 1/2 cups (according to the food calculator on their site) to see what that will do. The only thing that makes me nervous about doing that is that she is still young and developing so I don't want to create any problems.

 

I have been pretty cautious about how long and what kind of exercise she does as to not cause any structural problems with her body. I take her for two ~30min walks aside from when she runs around the backyard like a Crazy Daisy. I have taken her to the park as well, but she doesn't seem to want to run around without some sort of motivation, meaning the ball or frisbee. She approaches the ball way too fast and out of control to the point in which her back end flies out from under her, so I have stopped that for now. Instead, the bike path I take her for walks on has tall grass on each side with some depth to the area and she loves running through that with very little motivation. This has also given me the opportunity to work on her "come" command as she seems a little less distracted in this environment. I am not sure how much more exercise to let her have at this point.

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I figure some dogs just need their AG's expressed more than others. Mick is not really a nervous dog but he has to have his expressed on a reg. basis. Things did get way better this winter when he was on raw way more than now but at the moment his aren't bad at all. It was normal for me to do his about evey other week. If not he'd usually get impacted.

 

I do agree that nerves set them off. The first time I had to do Micks was on a long trip where he was a bit more uptight than normal.

 

Only difference in food that i've seen was the raw in winter and there's not much fiber in raw elk.

 

He's so used to having them done that he has a command for it...."come ere, I wanna do your butt" he comes over and stands between my leggs with his butt facing out :rolleyes: .

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I have been trying to look into this issue some more and everything I seem to find mentions adding fiber to bulk up the stools which confirms what the vet said to do. Right now my best guess is that Daisy's problem started with her anxiety over the two car rides. I think the glands excreted due to the car rides and this was followed by looser stools from all the stress. The loose stool over a number of days is probably what made the one gland too difficult for her to express during a bowel movement....... :rolleyes: a theory anyway since the odor did come shortly after each trip.

 

I think what I will do is give her carrots as training treats in lower value situations, like at home when we are practicing and if I am out and about use the higher value dehydrated chicken pieces for example in class when there are more distractions. I have paid extra attention to how much she has been eating the last two days and she does not seem to be over eating, I think I messed up by too many milk bone cookies when I was out of her training treats. I did reduce her daily kibble (nature's variety instinct) amount to 2 cups instead of 2 1/2 cups (according to the food calculator on their site) to see what that will do. The only thing that makes me nervous about doing that is that she is still young and developing so I don't want to create any problems.

 

My pup often had loose stools when he was younger. It was suggested that I add a small amount of canned pumpkin to his diet. I found it definitely helped firm them up - his stools were looser if we'd run out. From what I've read, "fiber" can work in both ways - firm loose stools and ease constipation.

 

By the way: I'd be a bit cautious about basing the amount you feed your pup on the instructions given on the food calculator on the side of the bag. Most such I've seen will have you substantially overfeeding the dog. My 1-year-old, ~ 47-lb pup eats about 1.5 cups per day of Innova lage bites (504 calories per cup), plus a very small handful of chopped grilled chicken breast (training treats) and a tablespoonful or two of canned pumpkin each day. Depending on which Nature's Instinct kibble formulation you're feeding, the calorie content is similar (490 calories per cup) or a bit lower to that of Innova; or perhaps your pup is more active than mine. I did base how much puppy kibble I bought for him on the calculator on the bag (they didn't carry it locally, so I wanted to purchase enough to last him until he was four months old). I ended up with exactly twice as much kibble as I needed, so getting him to eat all that would have ended up with an overstuffed pup. Animal rescue benefited from the unopened bag... Oh, and some dogs have trouble tolerating the wheat in Milk Bones; that can also contribute to loose stools.

 

Good luck!

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While we are on this subject can someone explain the right way to express the anal glands?

My dogs both "scoot" on occasion and it would be nice to check and see if there is a problem.

I have never attempted this for fear of hurting them. I have heard it is easy to do though.

I have latex gloves and am standing by!! :rolleyes:

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hey Mona

i think it's something that you have to be shown. If I take Mick to the vet he usually expresses them internally but I use the external way. Which is much easier or less gross, get someone to show you the external method. Also, some dogs seem easier than others. I guess it's the uptight ones that might be a bit hard...they tence up. Raven will let me but it's harder to do. I usually have to do one side first then the other which is a strange way to do it. Plus if it's not getting to gross, the stuff that comes out vaires greatly from dog to dog so don't freak when they don't look the same.

Warning...don't get your face to close to the action or you'll be sorry! :rolleyes: I learned that the hard way!!!

 

Mary, I'd love it if Mick was able to express his at all! It's not my favorite dog chore. I even like cutting nails better! :D

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The way I do it is to hold the base of the dog's tail in my left hand and put my thumb and forefinger at the 4 and 8 o' clock positions just below the anus. I you press in you can feel where the anal sacs are. (if they're full) They feel like marbles, only not as hard. I use a tissue or paper towel and squeeze in with a pinching motion up and toward the anus. As someone already said, keep your face clear! (and the rest of you too!) DO THIS OUTDOORS! The smell is incredible. And it lasts.

 

If your dog seems to be in pain when you do this, (rather that simply indignant) the anal sacs, or just one, may be impacted of infected. The normal discharge is sort of clearish greeny-brown. If there's blood or pus, take him/her to the vet.

 

I have not found scooting to be a reliable indicator of anal sac trouble. It can just as easily be tapeworm or something tickly coming from the anus, like a bit of hair or grass. But it's worth checking out. Sometimes it is the sacs.

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The normal discharge is sort of clearish greeny-brown

 

I'm not sure I'd call this normal. Maybe for most or some but I've done so many dogs that it's always a bit different.

Mick's are clear brownish w/hardly a smell.

Raven has a thick gooey yellowie band that comes out. I've had her checked and that is "normal" for her, I was worried that there was something going on cause of the looks. Not much smell

My mom's little sheltie has darkbrown with "stuff" in it. Sorta tiny little pebbles. Knock you down with the stench. Again, had her checked and she's fine too.

So I still say there are lots of different looks!

I've also had different dogs need different places on the clock to be push/raised. Raven's aren't in the normal spot and they are way back so you have to really "find" them to get to them. Mick...perfect 4 and 8 position right at the surface.

Like I said...I think you need someone to show you cause it's sorta hard to get the push/raise thing going on. Or it was hard for me :rolleyes: Now I could do it with my eyes closed but I never know where the aim is quite going so I won't shut my eyes! But I do shut my mouth!

 

Now to slink away thinking of the stuff we find to discuss on this board!

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Kind of gross, but there are some good clips on Youtube demonstrating how to express a dog's anal glands. Just search 'anal glands' or something similar.

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I had to take Daisy into the vet last night because we kept noticing an odor. At first I thought it was related to her past issue with puppy vaginitis and thought infection.

 

The vet said that it was her anal glands and explained that dogs will often excrete due to excitement, anxiety, fear, and even stress.

Okay, so what kind of "odor" were you noticing? Recently Scooter has been smelling up the place. We thought it was a gas attack, but he's never been a stinky dog before. Could this be anal glands?

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Okay, so what kind of "odor" were you noticing? Recently Scooter has been smelling up the place. We thought it was a gas attack, but he's never been a stinky dog before. Could this be anal glands?

 

AG smell is not a gas smell, its a very distinctive, almost skunky smell.

 

My old Papillon has spinal cord issues and one thing that was affected was the way he poops, he has to kind of "walk it out" and he moves his tail to make the stool move out. He subsequently developed an anal gland problem and got a terrible infection. We thought he was having back pain and had made an appointment to have him looked at when we realized he was bleeding and ran him to the vet where he had emergency surgery.

 

A million dollars later he is fine but now we know he has to be expressed and the vet told us the "internal" method works best, yay us! I use a glove with a bit of lubricant on it to make it more pleasant for both of us, and it doesn't work because neither of us like it. However, its better than the alternative (the impaction was clearly VERY painful for him) and it goes quick. I also add some fiber to the diet to help bulk up the stools for him although it doesn't seem to help a lot...but his situation is very different than most doggies.

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Okay, so what kind of "odor" were you noticing? Recently Scooter has been smelling up the place. We thought it was a gas attack, but he's never been a stinky dog before. Could this be anal glands?

 

Daisy smelt like rotten fish! Was a very, very, VERY fowl odor.

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Guest echoica

** I did not read the whole thread so excuse me if I repeat anything **

 

You say you feed Nature's Variety Instinct...this is grain free. Maybe you should put her on a premium food that includes grain. One of my dogs has loose stool on grain free and the popular trend these days is "grain-free" but not all dogs do well on it. There is nothing wrong with grain in food...it is all the cheap fillers that are the problem. Especially if you want to get more fibre. An increase in fibre can harden the stool if you are deficient. It's when it is in excess you are going to get the looser stool.

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