Friday, April 2, 2010

Impacted Anal Glands (Sacs) - Natural Treatments

You see your pet scooting across the floor rubbing his/her rear end. Rover or kitty is licking their bottom more than usual. The area around the anus is swollen and inflamed.

Anal glands are part of your pet’s anatomy. They lay just under the anus at 5 and 8 o’clock (see image). The glands are designed to excrete a smelly fluid when your pet defecates. They give a particular scent to the stool. The glands can become blocked if your pet isn’t having regular bowel movements, or there is only a small stool volume. The problem may be more common in small dogs.


HOW TO EXPRESS ANAL GLANDS YOURSELF. It may not be the most enjoyable job, but it is the best way to relieve the problem. First, take your pet to the bathtub and apply lukewarm water to clean his bottom. Slip into some latex exam gloves and lift your pet’s tail. The glands lay at 4 and 8 o’clock. Squeeze your thumb and forefinger together on the right side of the anus (4 o’clock) and the left side (8 o’clock). Apply moderate pressure. If nothing comes out, adjust your angle and repeat. A brownish foul-smelling fluid should come out. If this is very painful for your pet, call your veterinarian.

SOME HEAT. Soak a washcloth in Epsom salts and warm water, and hold it to your pet’s bottom for 5 minutes twice daily. If your pet will allow it, you can also put some pressure on the glands while using the compress - this may help them drain.


BULK UP. Additional dietary fiber will increase stool volume, naturally putting pressure on the anal glands, helping them empty. Good sources of fiber include Metamucil (1 tsp per 10 lbs of body weight daily), oat bran (1 tsp per 10 lbs of body weight daily), carrots (1/8 cup per 10 lbs of body weight daily) or canned pumpkin (great for cats, 1 tbsp daily).

MOVE IT. Regular exercise helps in the expression of the glands. Your pet should get at least 15 minutes of exercise twice daily.

HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES. Silica is a homeopathic medicine used for obstructed anal glands. The dose is 3 pellets of Silica 6C twice daily for 3-5 days.

Hepar sulph 6c can be used first if the glands are infected and prone to abscess. It will ripen the infection and help bring it to a head. The dose is 3 pellets of Hepar sulph, given twice daily for 3-5 days. Then follow the treatment with Silica (dose as recommended above). Silica will make it easier to expel the sacs contents. NOTE: Don't use both remedies together at the same time. They should be given separately as different treatments (one following the other).

CALL THE VET. If the glands remain obstructed after you have tried the above remedy suggestions call your vet. If the glands appear abscessed, see your veterinarian immediately.

For more information on natural pet healthcare visit Pet Remedy Charts

1 comment:

  1. My dogs are always getting impacted anal glands and this article has really helped me. I purchased some oat bran to go in their food and with more regular walks, this has been the solution for my two dogs.