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Anal gland removal

Published on: August 05, 2022 • By: sbeiter1219 · In Forum: Dogs
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sbeiter1219
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August 05, 2022 at 10:17pm
Hi, I have an 11 year old coonhound whose anal sacs are filling up with blood. She’s been going to the vet for the last 4 plus months and has been on 5 different antibiotics to help. At first it was only the left one but today was both. Vet said next step is surgery to remove both of them. I would like to know what to expect. It seems to be a rare surgery. I was told the only side effect would be loosing muscles strength in the anal region. Will this decline her health by doing the surgery? She’s lost 4 pounds in two weeks. Starting to have more fatty lumps on her. Just want what’s best for her but also don’t want her in pain or have a hard time recovering or having more issues further down the road from the surgery. Thank you! Any feedback would be wonderful.
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Liz Buchanan BVSc MRCVS
Moderator
August 06, 2022 at 10:08am
Hello.  Anal gland infections are being diagnosed less commonly because it is being increasingly understood that many are not caused predominantly by bacteria. Indeed, they may be related to skin inflammation, commonly associated with allergy or inflammation at the neck of the bladder, or with the quality of the secretion or with shape of the dog, the diet or anal gland size.   I obviously have no idea what kind of work up has been carried out by your dogs' vet - whether they have found microbes or run culture and sensitivity on, or how they explain the repeat infection and so on.    However, I would expect them to have more information available to them than me. Although the short-burst, chronic, long-term nature of anal gland problems result in relatively few referrals to skin experts (vets tend to find something that seems to help and repeat it), this option can be well worth following up.  Since anal gland problems frequently recur throughout a dogs' life, it can lead to a financial gain to have the problem well diagnosed and treated by an expert from the beginning.  This is often worth asking your vet about.
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Liz Buchanan BVSc MRCVS
Moderator
August 06, 2022 at 10:21am
You asked specifically about specialists who remove anal glands and then listed some very real risks of the procedure.  Again, this is something to ask the specialist vet about - once they can say for sure what is causing the problem.
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