Why Does My Dog Scoot?

It’s something no one wants to see – their dog dragging their bum along the ground, grass or carpet! While some people may want to scold their pets, there may be a good reason as to why they are doing this. So why does your dog do this and what can we do about it?

Scooting is almost always a sign that something is irritating your dog. The reasons can vary. All reasons should be addressed by your veterinarian! You can start by checking under their tail to determine if the area looks irritated. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, leave the dirty work to us!

The most common reason is issues with the anal glands. Every dog has two anal glands, internally, on either side of the anus. These glands produce a liquid material which is expressed with every bowel movement. Sometimes the glands may become quite full, causing the dog to scoot to relieve the pressure. The first step to see if the anal glands are bothering your dog is to have our veterinarians perform an expression of the glands. This removes the material inside the glands and relieves the pressure for your dog. If a gland is blocked or infected, this may lead to an abscess which would need to be treated by our veterinarians.

Some dogs may develop allergies, which makes them itchy. One of the common places for your dog to become itchy is under their tail or around their anus. If the anal gland expression is normal and there isn’t an abundance of material in either gland, this can be the next reason for your dog to be scooting as they are trying to relieve the itch!

If you think your dog has been having anal gland issues or seems itchy back there, give us a call today to get it checked out!

Written by Raeanne Boyd, RVT