Layout Image

Why does my dog scoot?

When a dog scoots or drags his behind the carpet, it can look strange–or even comical.  If he does it when you have company, it can also be embarrassing!  If you have ever seen this happen, you may be wondering why your dog does this.  In almost all cases your dog is trying to get some relief from irritation in his anal region. 

There are several possible reasons for the irritation.  Full, swollen or impacted anal glands are the most common reasons.  Your dog’s anal glands are located on the sides of his rectum.  If everything is normal with your dog his anal glands will empty when he defecates.  This is one way a dog marks their territory.  If the glands become clogged due to an infection or another medical problem, your dog may not be able to express (empty) his glands.  This can cause him to drag his rear end on a rough surface in attempt to get some relief.

 Normally, your dog’s anal glands will automatically express themselves when he has a bowel movement.  When glands become clogged or swollen, you may need professional assistance.  If you notice your dog is prone to irritation, he may need to have his glands expressed on a regular basis.  If left untreated, clogged anal glands can rupture–and you want to make sure your dogs receives proper medical attention before that happens.