Q. My puppy is 5 months old and has anal gland problems. How can I prevent further problems?
JESSICA L DESROSIERS
A. Anal gland issues are very common in dogs. Some dogs may have chronic issues which just require you to express the anal glands on your own on a regular basis. Your vet can show you how to express the glands yourself if this is the case.
Sometimes, diet changes can also help the anal glands to express themselves. Stools that are too hard or too soft may fail to express the glands as normal, so changing the fiber content in the diet, adding probiotics (such as plain yogurt) or fiber (such as pureed pumpkin) may help the glands on their own.
In some cases, the glands can also become chronically infected. Traditional treatment involves antibiotics and regular expression of the glands, however in some cases where medications do not work, anal gland removal may be needed to permanently clear up the issue.