Home Remedies for Anal Gland Problems in Dogs: Tips and Tricks


11 User Reviews
5 star (11) 

Posted by Laynie (Lakewood, NJ) on 03/25/2008
5 out of 5 stars

I cannot even tell you how thrilled I am to have found the "pumpkin" cure for anal impaction! My dog, a small mixed breed, was at the point where I was taking her at least every two weeks to have her glands expressed! I started her on one teaspoon (she is small) of pumpkin mixed with her food and she has not had to have them expressed in over three months now!! It's a wonderful cure! If you haven't tried it, do so!! THANK you!!!

Replied by Susa
(Lvn, Ks)

So glad to read this- we have the same issue... How heavy is your dog? And did you feed the pumpkin once or twice a day? Thank you!

Replied by Becky
(Kilgore, Texas)
5 out of 5 stars

I have been using 1 teaspoon of pumpkin a day on my small dog also and have had real good results. I buy real small can of 100% pure pumpkin and divided it up and freeze it in small bags. I read it should be used in 5-7 days when stored in refig.

Replied by Sherie H.
(Kent, England)

Hi there, where can I buy pumpkin for my cat whom the vet is hoping to perform an operation costing me £1000?

Replied by Lisa
(Brookfield, Missouri)

How much does your dog weigh?

Replied by Nick

My cats been dragging its butt after it poops and it looks liquidity!!! His appetite is good eats and drinks!!! What should I do? Pumpkin?

Posted by Margaret (Worcester, MA) on 11/11/2006
5 out of 5 stars

feeding approximately 2 tablespoons canned 100% pure pumpkin 2X per day (for a dog weighing about 100 pounds). This cures anal sac impaction. My Rottweiler had anal sac problems from too soft stools and was in misery after eliminating. We had to take him several times to the vet for her to express the sacs- which he found rather unpleasant. She suggested we increase the fiber content of his diet and suggested we try the pumpkin. We started out with 1 tblsp/feeding (twice a day) and then upped it to 2 tblsp/feeding (twice a day) because of his size. He loves his pumpkin and has it every day. He has not had one bout of anal sac problems since we have started him on the pumpkin and this has been for almost 2 years now.

Replied by Sarah
(Dallas, Tx)
5 out of 5 stars

This morning my 3-year-old cat dragged poop all over my house. I searched the net on why and found that she might have impacted anal glands. I took her to the vet, and sure enough, they said that was her problem, and they had expressed them. The cost to me was $25.00 and I really can't afford extra expenses right now. Also, I don't ever want poop all over my house again. So I came to Earth Clinic and read how much canned pumpkin had helped other peoples' pets-even cats. I went out right away and there was one can of pumpkin left at the grocery. I mixed it in her wet food (I give her dry, with a couple of spoons of wet) and she ate it happily. I was curious, and put a little half spoon of pumpkin also in her bowl, while she was eating--and she ignored the rest of her food, and licked up all the pumpkin! Next thing, I found her scraping around in her litter box, which had been untouched for the last 24 hours. I believe this has solved the problem, very easily--thank you to Earth Clinic, and to all who post here!

Replied by Nan
(Covington, La)

Will sweet potoatoes work as well-my dog likes them and they are included in a lot of dry dog food?

Pumpkin Seed, Coconut Oil

Posted by Charmaine (Ulster, N Ireland) on 09/06/2012

Hi folks, im letting you all know about my 4 1/2 yr old german shepherd who was having big problems with anal glands, vet was reluctant to operate as she said her glands where normal and changed her diet with a medication, royal canine is one of the top foods but alas was not getting rid of the problem and I was squeezing her glands for her on a regular basis.

But this time I came across this site and altho I couldnt get a hold of pumpkin flesh I did get the ground pumpkin seed along with coconut oil in a health food shop and started feeding her with the blended mixture of both and hey presto, a week has past, gone is the offensive dark brown smelly liquid that usually was excreted from her glands and she doesnt seem soo down anymore, loves the taste and will look for more although I think maybe I will decrease the amount I was giving her, this bitch is much happier as well as she isnt smelling the home anymore and this way she doesnt have to endure an operation that may change her character, so people dont knock it till you have tried it, your dogs will thankyou for it xxx

ps thankyou very much for the idea, I very much appreciate your help and ideas.

Pumpkin, Coconut Oil, Epsom Salt Baths

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Gwen (Boulder/Denver, Colorado, Usa) on 09/07/2010
5 out of 5 stars

I've dealt with anal gland issues in cats & dogs. I have a little puppy mill dog & we don't know what she is, but is a dog that looks like a cat & licks herself like a long haired kitty. Pumpkin works great for releasing hair balls. She sometimes pucks them or pass it in her stool. Hence the AG problem I think.

I also add coconut oil & coconut flacks for AG abscesses. Coconut oil & flakes also guards against all kinds of ailments, tumors, arthritis, tooth problems & so forth. Check the coconut oil remedies section on EC for people & what you find will also work for your animals! Remember you are working with natural/pure substances, so it is very hard to over dose. Just get close in measurements which a lot of people will post dosages they use. Using common sense should be enough & because it is a natural substance, the most you might have to deal with would be diarrhea if you use too much. Then lower the dosage.

I wanted to add, if you are dealing with an abscess, there are other things you can do. I will put my pet in a sitz bath of Epsom salts to start drawing the infection out & soaking in the warm water brings them relief. Once again check the abscess section on EC for people. Adding Turmeric to food also is a good idea if it is a chronic problem. I picked up a great tip there about telling the difference between boil, abscess, zit, ingrown hair duct, etc. Just put a cotton ball soaked in peroxide. If a boil, it won't do anything, but abscess, or zit or such, it will bring it to a head & drain the pus or infection in the area. I keep peroxide soak going for about 20-30 minutes. By the time I remove the soaked cotton, it will usually drain the infection immediately, or let you know what you are dealing with! Depending on size & length of infection, I may have to add another 20-30 minute soak before it drains, but it will drain & black colored abscesses will turn back to white/natural color. You could also make solution of peroxide, & Epsom in warm water & keep applying with a cloth, if they will let you because it is very painful for them. I like the idea of sea salt solution injection to kill infection, but I would think you would want swelling down before trying to administer. Ouch! Good luck & Many Blessing to You & Your Little Ones!

P. S. Some cures for people are posted in the animal section not posted for people & vise-a-versa. Use common sense as Mother Earth has given us everything we need to heal!

Replied by Apryl
(Aiken, South Carolina)

The pumpkin is working for the most part, I've only seen my dog scoot his bottom a few times. It really has worked, but what I'm wondering is should I continue to give it to him everyday, and I have, but only about a tablespoonful. Do you think this is all right? I welcome the feed back!

Raw Food Diet

2 User Reviews
5 star (1) 
1 star (1) 

Posted by Suzanne (Southeast, Michigan) on 04/27/2008
5 out of 5 stars

For those of you who have dogs with skin problems, skin allergies, anal gland issues, smelly coats, dirty or greasy feeling coat, smelly breath, please consider a raw diet. This is something that is becoming more well known and is growing in popularity. Commercial dog foods are the cause of so many health problems in pets. My dog had horrible anal gland problems(have you ever smelled anything so horrid?) Instead of having his anal glands extracted over and over, and for other health reasons that need to be addressed, I switched him to a raw diet. My three dogs and one cat have now been eating a raw diet for two years now. Raw meaty bones, some organ meat, and then a couple times a week, a few supplements like fish oil, yogurt, raw egg, kale. It's similar to something called the BARF diet for pets, but a simplified version. Two books by Tom Lonsdale, Raw Meaty Bones, and Work Wonders, are a good place to start reading about the diet. There are web sites and yahoogroups as well. There is a formula for percentage of meat/bones/organ, so it's important to read about the diet before jumping into it. It should also be a very gradual transition. My dogs teeth are super clean and white (even my 9yr old lab) because they're eating like their ancestors did; ripping the meat off bones, chomping on bone (raw bones only -- cooked bones are a choking hazard). Since starting this diet, besides being overall healthier pets, other benefits: clear anal glands because the poop is a bit harder, healthier skin and coat, no dog smell or doggy breath, much less poop because no fillers, etc., as in dry food I never have to clean up poop in my yard! Natural diet means natural poop; in a few days, it turns white and crumbles away. Also, my dogs are happier. They love the raw diet. I had one very stubborn cat who I just couldn't get to transition to a raw diet, so I fed her Evo, the more natural dry food. That did help her allergies, but I still would rather she went raw.

Replied by Kim
(Hamilton, Ontario, Canada)

My golden's anal sac issues were solved many moons ago by switching to a raw food diet. HOWEVER, my rott mix has been having anal sac issues for about a year now, regardless of diet. We've tried herbal fixes, grain free kibbles, raw foods (several varieties) and have actually settled on a less than ideal kibble. Still corn/wheat/soy/byproduct/chemical free, but my guys generally eat grain free human grade stuff. We're in the process of switching to morning feedings of this kibble and then evening feedings of Orijen again with added pumpkin, coconut and bran. Her issues are severe, and she required expression weekly, with copious amounts of fluid. Quite frankly, I've never seen anything like it. Cross your fingers for us!

Replied by Linda
(Burlington, Ontario)

Hi Kim: How is you doggy doing with his anal sac problems. I am going through the same thing with my choc lab. I have to get them emptied every two weeks. He is on a high fiber diet, coconut and coconut oil I HAVE TRIED BRAN CARROT AND PUMPKIN. i AM THINKING ABOUT ADDING ENZYMES TO HIS DIET. hAVE YOU EVER TRIED ENZYMES. hAS YOU DOG EVER BEEN ON HIGH DOSES OF ANTI BIOTICS. I THINK THIS HAS CAUSED ALL OUR PROBLEMS BUT THAT IS JUST MY UNEDUCATED OPINION. i WOULD LOVE TO HEAR IF YOU ARE HAVING ANY SUCCESS.

Replied by Cynthia
(Chennai, India)

Oh gosh, Linda, I didn't think of the antibiotics causing the anal sac situation, but you are probably right. And to think I gave him another course of them out of desperation.

For your dog, since he's already on a raw meat diet, I would suggest that you see if you can find a classical homeopathic vet, or just a homeopath. Lots of homeopaths will take dogs as patients. You could even try an online homeopath since we have Skype these days. My advice: only deal with homeopaths that deal with the whole constitution of the dog. You can tell if he/she is a good homeopath because they will ask all sorts of questions about the character of your dog. Pray it all works out...

Replied by Liz
(Grand Island, NY)

I am new to this blog. I was just reading your situations with your dogs. I am also having an anal gland problem with my little guy. He is a 3 year old Beagle mix. I have been having to express his anal glands nearly every 2-3 weeks, sometimes weekly. This has been going on for the past 4 months. I started him on canned pumkin and that seemed to be working, but lately we're back to having his glands expressed weekly. My vet has talked to me about surgery. I really hate to go tht way if there are other alternatives to try. I would really love any and all help. Thanks.

Replied by Kristen
(Spring Tx)

How much does it cost you a month to feed your animals raw food?

Replied by Stevie
1 out of 5 stars

I have a 2 yr old pitty about 65 pounds and just started today on 2tbs of pumpkin and will do twice a day with his food. He only eats raw food diet mixed with vegetables but he still has this anal gland issue I have started notice the smell and him licking his bum a lot and also grabbing his tail which he never use to do. It's been about a week or so of this and just started to smell that almost metalic smell when he licks his bum. He has for a long time now had mucus in his stool which vet gave me anti biotics and some other stunt hat was to loosen off the intestine if there was a foreign body inside his intestine. But nothing worked and now this anal gland smell..I just hope this works as I spend more than I can afford just on his organic raw meet diet from a company called natural instincts. My point being is raw meat diet did not help as that's all he has ever been given by me.

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Stevie!

You might consider feeding your boy a raw meaty beef rib or neck bone to bulk up his stool to help express his anal glands. You also would benefit to learn how to express the glands yourself to aid your boy when it appears he needs his glands expressed.


1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Gail (Tennessee) on 08/26/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I find using vaseline around the anal area with light movement with your finger has a great effect in helping the glands to empty themselves! Use this even after finding them scooting! Only two vet bills with my third yorkie!

Replied by Sonya
(San Diego)

Impacted anal glands!

I am so happy that I found this wonderful site. To all of the pet parents, Thank you so much for being so kind and supportive of each other. Great advice!

Warm Bath

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Anna (PA) on 02/19/2021
5 out of 5 stars

Hi. I am using these remedies. Also Vets Best hairball treats are great for AG issues in my cat. Bulks up her stool and has slippery elm to sooth the tract. But I also found if she is having issues, I sit her in a warm bath for while and then pat around her butt area and the water softens the AG liguid and I see it come out in the bath water. So the bath works well for serious blockage.

Replied by Anna

I am also using pumpkin baby food or prune baby food as well.

Wheat Bran, Digestive Enzymes

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Janet (Annapolis Md) on 05/03/2022
5 out of 5 stars

I use wheat bran in my kitties food with digestive enzymes powder for cats. Helps constipation. I also make him chicken broth with carrots in broth while simmering. He loves it.


1 User Review
4 star (1) 

Posted by Gibi (NJ, US) on 08/09/2014
4 out of 5 stars

I have 10 yrd old maltipoo.After getting bladder stone surgery a few months ago, he started having problems with AG 'scooting'. Also his anal area appears swollen. Tried a lot of things, but wary of most due to he has diabetes, on insulin shts 2x a day. Also has epileptic seizures. Last week , started giving 2 teaspoons plain lowfat yoghurt mixed in a little water. He gulped it down, appetite improved. Scooting very much reduced. Will keep u posted.

Replied by Peggy

When my 8 year old Daisy, a shepherd mix, had this anal gland problem, I made sure she got a lot of pumpkin. I purchased the canned pumpkin, some say fresh is better. I mixed several spoonfuls with her dry food. I had no problem with her eating it. There are some good sweet potato treats too that seem to help. She now gets pumpkin or sweet potatoes frequently to avoid this problem. I hope this helps.

Replied by Walnut2015

I see everyone is talking about dogs mostly on here. I need so help with options before I jump to the vet $$

"Walnut" my cat She has the 2nd stage or maybe 1 sac I think it might be an infection but not sure I saw the little black thing and I was trying to wipe it with a wet wipe and it wanted to come but I was a little worried of hurting her. I will try the pumpkin but I was not sure if there is anything else out there I should feed her.

I have another cat before who had stage 3 and the vet was so nice and took good care of my baby girl "cat" so people if u have stage 3 don't think ur extremely bad animal parent. My cat would just run off we thought it was because she was getting old 15 years old - then we saw her bottom. I was crying and got her to the vet asap.

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