To most kids Scooby Doo is perhaps the greatest dog of all time. Scooby is now a superhero. While Scooby is a perfect sleuth, he may not be immune to scooting. Dogs scoot at one point in their lives.  You may look at scooting as play, but a closer look might disturb you. Scooting is a perennial dog problem and one that causes your dog great pain.

Why dogs scoot

Dogs scoot because of the itch and pain that comes from their anal sacs. Anal sacs are  scent glands that leak out a bad smelling liquid now and then. Your dog’s anal sacs ooze out every time your dog poops. Pooping is another way your dog marks his territory. And when your dog gets scared its anal sacs also spray liquid. Not all dogs smell the same, however. It looks like nature designed dog’s anal sacs individually. Anal sacs’ spray is not poisonous—it just smells bad because of bacteria.

Dog Scoot 11 Why Does My Dog Scoot

Depending on the breed of your dog, the anal sacs may not be located in the same place—unless you have a mongrel. Mongrels are not bred so their anal sacs are located somewhere near their behind.  But in bred dogs, their anal sacs may not be working which explains why they don’t smell bad. Nevertheless their anal sacs continue to fill up with bacteria, and could get swollen and later develop into an abscess. When anal sacs are full they rupture!

In order to get rid of that extremely itchy feeling, dogs scoot—they rub their butt across the floor.  The other way your dog does it is by licking its behind. That’s what you see most times—your dog bends back to either snip or bite an area near its butt.  Anal sacs are the same reason your dog gets nasal fluid. When your dog licks its behind, anal sacs’ fluid flows into its throat. This causes your dog to have bad breath. However much your dog tries to lick off the pain, the bacteria in its anal sacs will never die.          

Why dogs have anal sacs

At one point in their evolution, dogs developed anal sacs for self protection, the way skunks did. Anal sacs used to be located in the sphincter muscles. They have ducts that connect to the rectum. The fluid that comes out of these ducts looks brownish and oily. In fact as your dog poops, its anal sphincter tightens and presses this fluid to leak out, joining your dog’s poop in the process.

Primitive dogs used the odor of their poop to mark out their territory and as well as send signals to other dogs. Dog experts say that thousands of years ago, dog poop was extremely hard since dogs ate an all meat diet.  They had to push real hard to poop. It’s no longer the case today because of dog food. Dog food has vegetable proteins that soften your dog poop.

You might think that your dog likes the itchy feeling while scooting. In reality, scooting creates a very painful feeling in your dog. It gets to a point where your dog suffers from poop impaction. And scooting is the only way he sees to relieve himself. At this stage your dog may need professional treatment. Your vet should check the anal sacs and check for secretions. When the fluid in your dog’s anal sacs turns buttery in consistency it’s likely to catch bacterial infection. An abscess follows as the sacs are filled. Pretty soon they will burst.

But if your dog’s scooting is not so serious (as in the case of bred dogs), just keep it clean and treat it well.

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Categories: Animals

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