It’s a dog’s life! Frolicking with friends at the local daycare, chasing squirrels in the back yard, sitting on laps, and eating yummy kibble everyday … life can be SO hard sometimes! With our pet’s tough schedules, there is always time for a spa day and pampering can not only be pleasing to the eye but also beneficial for a pet’s inner workings which include the not so delightful subject: anal sacs or “scent glands”.

ImageNot too many are familiar with anal sacs or how issues with them are caused. If you have found Fido lately to be doing a sort of “scooting” maneuver, licking more than usual in the hind area, or any look of discomfort while laying down, there is a chance he may be in need of a little TLC “down there”.

All animals have anal sacs. They just use them differently. Wild animals such as skunks use them as a defense mechanism, while domestic furry friends  use them more as territorial markings and a way to greet other canines.

These sacs are located within the anus of the dog and typically empty (or “express”) its potent, liquid substance whenever the dog defecates. However, it is possible for the glands to not exert enough pressure to release which could lead to discomfort and pain. If not expressed often, bacteria and other infections could form and could potentially lead to pricey veterinary visits and, worst of all, an irritated, swollen bum for little Fido.

Pet Stylists have the chance to bathe, trim, as well as examine the anal glands. Upon inspection, the groomer will squeeze the sacs to ease any tension that may have been built up over time. This prevents possible future anal gland challenges. In case of an infection or abnormality, it’s best to have a medical professional look and handle these types of ailments rather than attempting to remedy the situation yourself which could further injure your furry family member. The groomer will tell you if Fido needs to visit the veterinarian.

The importance of clean hygiene could not be  “expressed” more. Make an appointment with a recommended pet bather and/or groomer . Ask if anal gland expression is a part of their routine. Your pet can then enjoy a spa treatment that is not only aesthetically pleasing but is a major health benefit, too!

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