Skip Navigation

Butt Scooting: Sign of a Bigger Problem?

MDVSS Butt Scooting

While sometimes funny and sometimes gross, frequent butt scooting might be indicative of a bigger problem.

However you react when your dog scoots their butt across your floor, it’s almost guaranteed that you do react. Butt scooting is a little bit gross and a little bit amusing, but dogs typically don’t do it for fun. Scooting can be a sign of a larger problem that requires veterinary attention to correct. Some of these problems are minor and easy to treat, while others can be more serious and require significant intervention.

Reasons for Scooting

Dogs engage in butt scooting when they are experiencing some kind of discomfort—this can be anything from the most benign itch to something more serious such as pain, swelling, and irritation. Your pup will scoot in an effort to relieve this discomfort. These issues could be caused by debris or feces that is stuck to them, loose stools, or problems concerning the anal glands, otherwise known as anal sacs.

Potential Problems

Scooting can be indicative of many different types of problems. It could be as simple as an itch or a one-off of loose stool, especially if your dog doesn’t engage in frequent butt scooting. However, frequent or regular scooting could point to a potentially larger problem, especially concerning the anal glands. It’s not uncommon for anal glands to become blocked, compacted, or infected. Typically, these minor issues are easy to deal with and don’t require any serious medical procedures to correct. However, anal glands can also become sites for tumors. If there is severe swelling or inflammation and other symptoms such as loss of appetite, trouble with defecation, vomiting, or lethargy—it’s time to bring your companion to the veterinarian and have them examined.

Next Steps

If your dog is constantly scooting and seems agitated or in pain, it’s best to bring them in to see your veterinarian. A thorough examination can help to identify what exactly is causing the discomfort, and from there they can determine the best course of action to remedy it. With minor problems such as anal gland blockage or infection, a simple expression of the glands and some antibiotics are usually enough to get your pup back to perfect health.

Cancer of the anal glands does happen as well. If this is the case, surgery is almost always the recommended treatment. Your surgeon may recommend testing to examine the calcium levels as an indicator of malignancy. An abdominal ultrasound may also be needed to examine the lymph nodes closest to the surgery site (sub-lumbar lymph nodes). If regional lymph nodes are affected, it is typically recommended that they are also removed with the anal glands. According to the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, surgery is the only proven method to influence the survival of dogs with these tumors.

Trust Maryland Veterinary Surgical Services With Your Companion’s Health

Your companion’s health is important, and the team at MVSS is ready to provide the best care possible for your furry family. We are dedicated to combining comprehensive exams and assessments with informative and honest discussions of your companion’s care. Once we have worked with you to decide on the best course of action for your dog, our professionals will use their surgical expertise to work towards the goal of giving your companion an active and pain-free life. We are proud to serve loyal companions in Catonsville and Baltimore. To learn more about our services, give us a call at 410-788-4088 or visit us online. For more information and tips for pet health, follow us on Facebook and Pinterest.

This entry was posted on Friday, August 12th, 2022 at 10:09 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.