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Another anal gland infection! (Read 3950 times)
Ef_Deal
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Another anal gland infection!
Nov 23rd, 2007 at 6:03pm
 
I just took Shadow to the vet for the second time in two weeks.  His anal gland had swollen and burst within the course of a ten-hour period before; the vet cleansed him and gave us antibiotics, and it seemed cleared up after ten days.  Then Wednesday evening, I saw signs of trouble again.  This morning, I saw the gland swollen and purple again, so I called the vet.  Before i had hung up the phone, the gland had burst through.

I have been so careful to make sure his bowels are regular and I even express him myself at least once a week.  Yet this is his fifth fistula since we got him 3 1/2 years ago.  Is there anything else I can do to prevent this?
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paula
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #1 - Nov 24th, 2007 at 3:45pm
 
Poor Shadow!  I hope he will get better and stay better!  In The Whole Dog Journal it says dogs with this problem need more fiber such as coconut flour and shredded coconut.Start with small amounts and gradually increase to about 1 tsp. coconut flour or 2 tsp. dried shredded coconut per 30 lbs. of body weight. Soak it well before mixing it with your dog's main meal.Soaking is also needed for other sources of fiber, such as wheat bran and powdered psyllium husks. Fiber can cause constipation so the easiest way to prevent problems is to soak bran or psyllium overnight or for several hours. Another thing that seems to work well is dried fruit, like prunes, apricots, or figs, which can also be added to meals. Large dogs could try 2 or 3 dried prunes, apricots, or figs per day. Dried fruits have a mild laxative effect, but the main benefit is their fiber. If the dog eats dried food, it's a good idea to soak dried fruit before adding it to food. This article was in the Oct.2006 issue. I love reading it because they believe in the holistic approach and they give such good information and advice on many different areas of concern to dog owners. Good luck!

Paula Smiley
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Ef_Deal
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #2 - Nov 24th, 2007 at 10:40pm
 
I'll have to see if Shadow will take dried fruit or coconut.   I'll have to find where to get coconut flour too.  Now, I have fiber capsules--perhaps I can try one of those at a time.  Thanks for those tips.   I hope to get through a whole year without another of these bouts ... it's an expensive procedure each time!
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paula
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #3 - Nov 25th, 2007 at 12:44am
 
Hi EF,
  I know how expensive vet bills can be! I've found natural food stores to have a lot of the things I'm looking for. Wishing you and Shadow the best of luck!

Paula Smiley
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DutchChow
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #4 - Nov 26th, 2007 at 12:07pm
 
Hi Ef--,

Poor Shadow!!
I think Paula gave some good advises.
Ask the vet to show you how to empty the 'anal gland' on a regular base.
It probably all starts from there. When not regular emptied by a good stool you need to help a bitby 'pressing' the gland in a special way. The vet can trell you easily how that works.

It is also not a bad idea to clean that area with a kind of 'baby oil' and a tissue each time he did his 'big business'. You will be amazed how 'dirty' the cotton will be!!

Hopefully Shadow will be okay soon again!!

Peter

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Ef_Deal
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #5 - Nov 26th, 2007 at 10:04pm
 
DutchChow wrote on Nov 26th, 2007 at 12:07pm:
Hi Ef--,

Poor Shadow!!
I think Paula gave some good advises.
Ask the vet to show you how to empty the 'anal gland' on a regular base.
It probably all starts from there. When not regular emptied by a good stool you need to help a bitby 'pressing' the gland in a special way. The vet can trell you easily how that works.

It is also not a bad idea to clean that area with a kind of 'baby oil' and a tissue each time he did his 'big business'. You will be amazed how 'dirty' the cotton will be!!

Hopefully Shadow will be okay soon again!!

Peter




I do express the gland at least once a week just in case.  The vet showed me how to do that a year ago.  Still, he's had so many problems.  I think the scar tissue from these incidents might be a factor.
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Ukye
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #6 - Nov 26th, 2007 at 10:39pm
 
A healthy dog should be expressing his anal glands every time he does his business.  If you manually express them, you actually cause the dog to stop doing it, and create a problem.  I am not sure how you can fix it at this point, but it is not a good idea to express anal glands on a regular basis, nor should you have this done by your groomer when you have your dogs groomed. 

Ukye :/
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #7 - Nov 27th, 2007 at 7:31am
 
Ef_Deal wrote on Nov 26th, 2007 at 10:04pm:
I do express the gland at least once a week just in case.  The vet showed me how to do that a year ago.  Still, he's had so many problems.  I think the scar tissue from these incidents might be a factor.

Hi Ef--,
Yes, I remember about this. Sorry, I was too quick to respond to you.
Nevertheless, this medical thing isn't fun at all for in particular your Shadow.


Ukye wrote on Nov 26th, 2007 at 10:39pm:
A healthy dog should be expressing his anal glands every time he does his business.  If you manually express them, you actually cause the dog to stop doing it, and create a problem.  I am not sure how you can fix it at this point, but it is not a good idea to express anal glands on a regular basis, nor should you have this done by your groomer when you have your dogs groomed.  

Ukye :/

Hi Ukye--, Hi Ef--,
Yes Ukye, you are absolutely right; normally a dog does express his anal glands every time he does his business. But we all know there can be all kind of causes why this sometimes doesn't work. It is new for me that by manually expressing the glands it can create a problem. Does anyone on this Forum have ideas and how Ef should handle this further? Ef, what is your vet saying about this chronic problem with Shadow?

Peter
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Ef_Deal
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #8 - Nov 28th, 2007 at 12:43am
 
DutchChow wrote on Nov 27th, 2007 at 7:31am:
[quote author=Ef_Deal link=1195837387/0#5 date=1196111068]
Ef, what is your vet saying about this chronic problem with Shadow?

Peter


She says that the anal gland infection is a chronic problem with chows!
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #9 - Nov 28th, 2007 at 10:15am
 
Ef_Deal wrote on Nov 28th, 2007 at 12:43am:
She says that the anal gland infection is a chronic problem with chows!



Hi Ef--,

Sorry to say, but this isn't a chronic problem in Chow Chows.
"Why didn't she blame you having a Chow Chow?"  Smiley Wink
Your vet should do her home work better, I think.... Roll Eyes
To what I understand is that about a 12% of all dogs have regular anal gland problems.
Now this is all fine , but you want a solution.
Your vet (or maybe not the one you currently have) should advise you more properly and adequate.
Generally speaking there are two solutions:
=Diet (can be a special fiber rich petfood and avoiding human food or treats) and excercize (more walks);
=Removal (so a surgery) of the anal glands.
The opinion what the function is of the anal glands is not very clear when reading about it.
There are those who say; "No function at all."

Nevertheless, I'm not in favour to have the anal glands removed. There is always a risk.

Here some references:
http://www.thepetcenter.com/wai/analsacs.html
http://www.dr-dan.com/analsac.htm
http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body_anal_sacs.html

Oh, and be careful with commercially available 'magical' stuff. They cost a fortune and hardly proof it works.

Peter


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Lynne
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #10 - Nov 28th, 2007 at 2:25pm
 
Hi Ef,

I have followed this subject every day and now I was
a little angry about your vet and a Chow related problem.
Lynne is my Chow nr.8 and I have never had this problem.
I spoke this morning with my friend Jenny,she is breeding
for 25 years,had many Chows and still has 13.
She only had a few minor problems,but never big or chronical
defects with her Chows too.
Peter gave you already websides about anal gland infections,
lots off advise and solutions there.
Even so poor Shadow I hope Ef will find the right solution,
Kiss Kissto you from Lynne and Ted
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Ef_Deal
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #11 - Nov 28th, 2007 at 11:30pm
 
My vet, Dr. Self, said she's had many anal gland problems with a number of dogs -- in fact, the day I was there most recently, two other dogs were getting their anal glands expressed, one had an infection.  She said almost all the chows she sees have anal gland problems at one time or other, and that once the gland perforates, the infections almost always return.

Keep in mind, this is a pet vet, not a breeder's vet, so she's likely to see a lot more of problems with common pets.
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #12 - Nov 28th, 2007 at 11:54pm
 
The more you express the anal glands, the more you're going to have chances of infection or rupture.  If the vet's practise is to do this alot with a variety of breeds, it would stand to reason that they would see it alot in their practise.... I'm not trying to criticise by any means or to attack your vet because that does not get any solution to the problem, but I would suggest that you look at independant research on the subject such as some of what Peter posted, and other places, and research and try to learn as much as you can about anal gland expression.  I have never heard of it being a "chow problem" and I'm not a breeder either.  It was my previous vet who's the one who told me to not start the anal gland expression, and he was a phenomenal vet that I miss greatly (I hated moving across the country from him), and I learned more about it as I learned about professional grooming.  There are problems that are breed specific...and that's really not one I've personally ever heard of for chows. 

Best of luck...if I had some time right now I'd try to help you with some research, but I strongly suggest that you do some independant searching on the subject.

Regards,
Ukye
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #13 - Dec 28th, 2007 at 2:56am
 
This is ridiculous ... we were back at the vet again today.  His left gland is a solid thick mass, and seeping some blood.  The THIRD anal gland episode in six weeks.  Fiber in the diet didn't help at all.  I have to debate having them removed.  What do you think?
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Re: Another anal gland infection!
Reply #14 - Dec 28th, 2007 at 11:25am
 
Ef_Deal wrote on Dec 28th, 2007 at 2:56am:
This is ridiculous ... we were back at the vet again today.  His left gland is a solid thick mass, and seeping some blood.  The THIRD anal gland episode in six weeks.  Fiber in the diet didn't help at all.  I have to debate having them removed.  What do you think?


Oh Ef--,
This is bad. I can imagine how you all feel there about this happening again and in spite of a fiber diet.
What is your vet advising?
I know there are opinions that it isn't harminmg at all having the glands removed.
But on the other hand it needs a whole process you have to go through; including aneasthetics, recovering, having to be careful. etc. etc.

Does your vet have experience with such a surgery?
Maybe a second opinion isn't a bad idea.

Ooh, how is Shadow doing now? Feeling better? No fever?
Hug him on behalf from all the BTT members!

Peter
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