We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.

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Dog Anal Gland Expression

When a dog is viewed from behind, the anal glands (also called anal sacs) are located on each side of and slightly below the anal opening at the 4 o’clock and 8 o’clock positions. A tiny duct or tube leads from the gland under the skin to an opening directly beside the anus. The material secreted into these sacs is thick, oily, stinky and is commonly described as smelling fishy.

Dogs recognize each other by smelling in the general area of the anus since each animal’s anal glands produce a unique scent.

In dogs, every time a stool is passed, it should put enough pressure on the anal glands that some of the secretions are deposited on the surface of the stool. However, some animals are unable to empty their glands on their own at all, which leads to the glands becoming impacted and uncomfortable. Common signs that your dog’s anal glands are full include: holding their tails down, shivering, reluctance to walk or hiding. Expression of the anal sacs every few weeks or months often will help prevent anal gland fluid from accumulating and becoming thickened again. High fibre diets have been shown to help prevent anal gland disease in at-risk dogs, especially those that are obese.

Should I drain my dog’s anal glands at home?

Maybe not. Expressing anal glands can be quite messy and smelly, and sometimes a challenge to do. However, less squeamish pet owners may want to try it. The problem is that no matter what anal gland expression technique you use, it is not generally a one person job. Pets tend not to appreciate having their anal area manipulated and even the most docile animal may bite. Squirming, at the very least, is expected so a helper experienced in animal restraint is likely going to be needed to control the front end of the pet. Care should be taken when expressing the anal glands, as too much pressure applied to an impacted anal gland could lead to rupture. All things considered, anal gland expression may be something best left to anal gland professionals.

If my dog scoots on the carpet a lot, does this mean their anal glands are impacted?

This behaviour is most commonly linked to anal glands, however, itchy skin, tapeworms, or even lower back pain can also result in scooting behaviours.

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COVID-19: Additional measures we are taking

Dear Clients,

Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.

The following changes are effective as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020:

1. We are currently operating a "closed waiting room" policy to protect our clients and staff. Our inside door will be locked. You can come into the vestibule and we will let you in when you get here or you can call us at 705-674-9191 upon arrival for your appointment or pick up. We ask that only one person bring your pet into the hospital for an examination with the veterinarian.

2. We are continuing to accept regular appointments so please call ahead to book a time.

3. We are still OPEN with the following hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday: 10 am - 6 pm
Wednesday: 12 pm - 8 pm
Friday: 9 am - 5 pm
Saturday & Sunday: Closed

4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 3-5 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives. Please call us ahead of time to ensure we have what you need and can have it prepared before your arrival. You can also use our online store and have your food delivered directly to your home. To sign up for the Online Store, please visit our website.

5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.

Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our jobs. We have taken these measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this disease.

Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid, and any updates will be provided as changes occur.

- Your dedicated team at Baxter Animal Hospital