Scooting is used to describe a dog dragging their bottom along the ground.
Bare ground, grass, carpet, anything will do. It is not a new trick your dog invented; they are trying to relieve an itch, pain, or discomfort that they cannot reach otherwise.
Anal gland issues
If you’re one of the people whose mind immediately jumps to an anal gland problem, chances are high, you might be right.
Anal glands are scent glands on either side of the anus, the same ones that skunks use to spray nasty-smelling stuff on predators. It appears they are designed as part of the marking mechanism; a form of biological ID. The anal gland content travels through ducts for a small portion to be squeezed out along with each poop. If the duct(s) become obstructed, trouble ensues.
If your dog’s anal sacs are inflamed, blocked, or abscessed, they might also chew or lick around the area, have a hard time pooping as well as you might notice bad odor or swelling.
Make no mistake; anal gland issues can get not only quite messy but also very painful for your dog.
Doesn’t that sound plenty painful? Your dog’s rectum can prolapse both from constipation or severe diarrhea. There would be visible tissue sticking out of your dog’s bum.
While not as common, tapeworms, too, can cause enough discomfort to make your dog scoot.
Tapeworms are not directly contagious, but your dog can ingest eggs when they swallow a flea. Cookie most likely got tapeworm from eating a whole squirrel.
If you ever saw the little segments crawling out, you could see how that could be uncomfortable. You may or may not notice little dried-up segments around your dog’s anus on their bed as well.
Often skin allergies manifest by itching in very specific areas. For example, it’s common to see discomfort inside the ears, between the toes, and around the bottom. Sometimes the inflammation involved in the allergic response leads to the blocking of the fine anal sac ducts, and so they become impacted secondarily.
There are other potential causes, too, such as wounds or tumors. So if your dog starts scooting, don’t get mad; get busy getting them the help they need.
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