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Well if she is not "shooting" which usual occurs by excitement, or marking of sort then I would guess she has an undying problem. Perhaps an still allergy or inflammation of the glands that hasn't been resolved. You also could be controlling her allergy and this leakage is just symptomatic since it occurs infrequently. In other words she still has allergies but they are being controlled as allergies really never go away. I guess if it continues to be a problem I would talk to the vet .
 

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Interesting thread. My spoo has only had anal gland issues under two circumstances. First is when he is on kibble and has less firm stools. Second was when we were going to a groomer that insisted on expressing his anal glands. I didn't realize the second until someone sent me this link.


When we went back on to a raw diet with appropriate bone content he was fine again. Since the pandemic I have been feeding him one meal a day of raw, and one of kibble, and he is not doing as well (not about anal glands though). So the last 4 days I have gone back to total raw. Very frustrating though as I have not been able to as easily get him as much raw meat as before. For some odd reason my spoo will not eat raw turkey.

When people mention chicken, are you talking about raw chicken, or chicken in kibble. Totally different. Many dogs that have chicken kibble problems do not have raw chicken problems. Also eggs. Are you talking about eggs from CAFO chickens? Or from chickens fed organic and free range?
 

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Discussion Starter #43
Interesting thread. My spoo has only had anal gland issues under two circumstances. First is when he is on kibble and has less firm stools. Second was when we were going to a groomer that insisted on expressing his anal glands. I didn't realize the second until someone sent me this link.


When we went back on to a raw diet with appropriate bone content he was fine again. Since the pandemic I have been feeding him one meal a day of raw, and one of kibble, and he is not doing as well (not about anal glands though). So the last 4 days I have gone back to total raw. Very frustrating though as I have not been able to as easily get him as much raw meat as before. For some odd reason my spoo will not eat raw turkey.

When people mention chicken, are you talking about raw chicken, or chicken in kibble. Totally different. Many dogs that have chicken kibble problems do not have raw chicken problems. Also eggs. Are you talking about eggs from CAFO chickens? Or from chickens fed organic and free range?
Peggy reacted to lightly poached organic free range eggs with extreme itchiness. I felt terrible for her. She's never shown an obvious reaction like that to dried egg in kibble, or to chicken in any form (raw, cooked, kibble, treats). But that doesn't mean they're not problematic. I know allergies can be low-grade, and food sensitivity triggers can be cumulative.

The two anal gland circumstances you describe are exactly what I'd expect, and perfectly illustrate why Peggy's situation is so baffling: Her groomer doesn't express her glands AND she has firm, well-formed poops.

I understood Gracie's issues: She had a very sensitive, anxious tummy and never had great stools. Plus she did the typical scoot. But she never made that fishy smell, at least not inside.

¯\(ツ)

I have no plans to feed raw. But home-cooked is an option, at least in the short-term.

Have you tried home-cooked?
 

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I recommend either BalanceIt or Meal Mix if you’re thinking about home cooking some of her meals. It’s a pretty easy way to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients she needs unless you’re willing to go down the nutrient spreadsheet calculation route...
 

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I know Peggy can be aggressive with raw food but have you tried all-prepared raw ? Those are frozen patties that you just thaw and serve. They are complete meals and delicious. They eat it so fast, I don’t see how she would even have time to think about resource guarding.
 

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Discussion Starter #46
I know Peggy can be aggressive with raw food but have you tried all-prepared raw ? Those are frozen patties that you just thaw and serve. They are complete meals and delicious. They eat it so fast, I don’t see how she would even have time to think about resource guarding.
She'd probably love that, but tricky for travelling. We're hoping to do some cross-country trips with her. I'll keep it as an option, though. Is there a brand you recommend?
 

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I recommend either BalanceIt or Meal Mix if you’re thinking about home cooking some of her meals. It’s a pretty easy way to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients she needs unless you’re willing to go down the nutrient spreadsheet calculation route...
That sounds much better than spreadsheets! Thank you :)
 

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She'd probably love that, but tricky for travelling. We're hoping to do some cross-country trips with her. I'll keep it as an option, though. Is there a brand you recommend?
The brands I buy are Canadian. They’re Bold Raw and Big Country Raw. I don’t know if they are available in the States.

For travelling, you could buy freeze dried, which is raw that has gone through a 24 hour process of freezing, without losing any ingredients, flavor or vitamines. It is NOT the same ad dehydrated, which isn’t raw meat.

Freeze dried is very expensive, more so than raw, because of the complex and lengthy process to remain raw meat. But for a few weeks, it might be okay. You can serve it dry or rehydrate it, and apparently dogs go crazy for it (as opposed to dehydrated, which is not very appetizing). I know Smack makes freeze dried and is rated 5 stars. Again, you’d have to check if it’s available in the States. Honest kitchen makes freeze dried also, maybe worth checking out.

The thing with freeze dried (that I’ve seen) is that you will also get other ingredients than meat. Very good ingredients, but not great when you’re doing allergy testing and only want one single ingredient. You’d need to be done testing before you feed it if to make sure you don’t introduce new allergens.

When I’m done testing most meat proteins, I plan on testing some freezed dried as well, for convenience when I have to travel or the dogs need to be boarded.
 

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Thank you so much for sharing your expertise.

I fed Gracie an Honest Kitchen dehydrated formula and she loved it. (I loved that it smelled like soup and not dog food.) It was easy to prepare. Just add water.

Peggy's now eating about 50% Honest Kitchen whole food clusters and 25% Farmina. So not cheap or low-quality by kibble standards, but lots of ingredients. The remaining 25% is Weruva canned food. I've found she needs this variety to stay interested in mealtime, but she loves Honest Kitchen so much, I even use it for training.
 

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Then at least you know she would love freeze dried even more. You’ll have choices if you decide to go the « raw » way.
I've been looking and can't find any mention of Honest Kitchen freeze-dried online. Just the dehydrated formula. Maybe it was discontinued?

But I'm looking at their limited ingredient options, and they might be good. No eggs, at least.
 

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For premade raw, that’s easily available in the US I recommend Answers (lots of fermented ingredients so great for gut flora), Vital Essentials (most limited ingredient), Small Batch, or Darwin’s (local to Washington and they deliver it to you).
Primal, Stella and Chewy’s, and Tucker’s are all good too.

Most of these brands also have a freeze-dried option. Another raw option for traveling is air-dried food (Ziwi Peak or Real Meat.) It could be good if you’re doing lots of hiking, but could also cause loose stools if she’s not used to it since it’s pretty high in fat. Either one is gonna be pretty expensive...
 

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Discussion Starter #53
For premade raw, that’s easily available in the US I recommend Answers (lots of fermented ingredients so great for gut flora), Vital Essentials (most limited ingredient), Small Batch, or Darwin’s (local to Washington and they deliver it to you).
Primal, Stella and Chewy’s, and Tucker’s are all good too.

Most of these brands also have a freeze-dried option. Another raw option for traveling is air-dried food (Ziwi Peak or Real Meat.) It could be good if you’re doing lots of hiking, but could also cause loose stools if she’s not used to it since it’s pretty high in fat. Either one is gonna be pretty expensive...
Thank you! I started researching and quickly got overwhelmed. This is really helpful.
 

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Thanks for the link to Dr Dobias. It's good to find another holistic vet. This was the first time I had heard that anal gland problems could be related to back problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #57
I was looking and both Instinct and sojos are freeze dried. I also like Stella & Chewy. I found this link too. Anal gland problems in dogs - natural treatment and prevention - Dr. Dobias Natural Healing
I find these articles so interesting, but also frustrating because they never match up with Peggy's specific situation.

I've still only found a handful of similar cases online, and they're all just personal stories about people's dogs, on Reddit or similar forums. There's commiseration, but never an expert analysis or explanation.

The one thing that article touches on that I do wonder about is back injury, as Peggy's always been sensitive to being touched on her lower back. No obvious signs of pain, but she'll turn her head around to look at you or nose your hand to say please stop.

Of course, that could also just be part of her temperament, as she's almost always a little on alert. But that alertness could also explain random anal gland expression....

Hmmm.

Just talking this stuff through for myself. Feel free to ignore me. ;)
 

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The one thing that article touches on that I do wonder about is back injury, as Peggy's always been sensitive to being touched on her lower back. No obvious signs of pain, but she'll turn her head around to look at you or nose your hand to say please stop.

Of course, that could also just be part of her temperament, as she's almost always a little on alert. But that alertness could also explain random anal gland expression....
I think you’re on to something here. She might also have weak rear-end muscle, including anal, and when she lies down, the way the muscles are positioned, her limited contraction capacity causes the leaking.

Can you find a dog chiropractor near you ? Or maybe an acupunturist, if no chiropractor ?
 

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I think you’re on to something here. She might also have weak rear-end muscle, including anal, and when she lies down, the way the muscles are positioned, her limited contraction capacity causes the leaking.

Can you find a dog chiropractor near you ? Or maybe an acupunturist, if no chiropractor ?
She does let out frequent toots! Not smelly or anything, but hilariously audible.

The one hole in this theory, though, is that the gland expression never happens when she's relaxing on the floor or in any of her beds (including in her crate, where she sleeps every night).

I'm going to start asking around about local dog chiropractors, but we're in a small town in a remote area. Makes me wish I was back in Toronto.

There's a holistic vet about an hour from here who, during normal times, could likely be of some help. But not sure when we'll be able to get to her.
 
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