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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Express Yourself—Ewww!

wobbly_scotties009017One of our Scottish Terriers is scooting—that means he’s dragging his popa across the floor.  That would be Misha the elder, the well-bred aristocrat.  Grisha the younger, the rescue, seems fine.

Misha has done this for years and we generally have to take him to the vet or to the groomer to have him “expressed”, which means they reach in and lightly squeeze his anal glands on the inside of his rectum.  (Sorry if that’s TMI—and it only goes downhill from here….)

This squeezing of the glands, when happening naturally, releases a smelly discharge which helps dogs when they poo-poo.  Sort of smooths the way, as well as marking their territory with their own scent.  Hence, the need for dogs to smell each other’s butt upon meeting—they want to know who’s who—and what better way to do it than to sniff their own natural “cologne” emanating from their backend.

Well, long story short, Misha’s glands do not seem to be expresing themselves enough on their own.  Therefore, thewheaten-scotties-scottish-terrier-breeders-scottish-terrier-puppies scooting.  He’s trying to squeeze them himself—and all over our off-white carpeting.  Thankfully, it doesn’t work.

So, once every couple of months or so, he needs to have the glands expressed.  Now it’s becoming more frequent.  The vet says that his glands are smaller than most dogs’, and fill quickly, even though we feed him roughage such as carrots and green beans.  I will be trying pure pumpkin puree’, which is also said to help.

Online, I’ve read about dog owners expressing their dogs themselves.  It’s a risky business, they say.  The discharge could (okay, this is gross) shoot out and hit you in the face, spray all over the room, get on your clothes… oh, and one vet recommended shutting your mouth-!  I guess that’s if you’re concentrating too hard-?  Or laughing. 

And then crying.

Bottom line:  I am not sticking my fingers in my dog’s bottom.  Then again, if he’s in pain….

scottish_terrier_(scottie)_1067_2I Google it.

I YouTube it.

Detailed descriptions abound, not many of which appear to be invasive.

It goes something like this:  Using the anus as a clock-dial, the anal glands are located inside, at about the 4:00 and 8:00 positions. Holding the tail straight up, if you feel a bulge there about an inch away from the anus, the sacs are full.  Using the thumb and forefinger of the other hand, you squeeze together and up, urging the discharge up and out.  Be ready with wet paper towels or napkins to wipe/ catch the discharge.  Then wash the dog’s bottom thoroughly, since it will probably smell.

Petya and I bring Misha into the bathtub, plying him with treats.  My son holds the dog between his legs, while, with my rubber gloved hands, I lift the tail and squeeze in the proper location. 

Nothing happens.

I try a few more times.  Misha is growing irritated.

I start to pray, wondering if I can pray about a dog’s popa, yet truly concerned if my dog is in discomfort.  Now I img_3263feel that I am adding to his discomfort.

Finally, a little ooze emerges.  That’s it?

When I try to squeeze more, the Scottie doesn’t tolerate it.  They say it could range from a small dribble, to maybe a tablespoon in more severely-affected dogs.

I guess we’re done.

Sashenka comes in to give both Misha and Grisha an oatmeal bath and the two dogs are happy campers. 

Deed done.  A new page in history has been written.  Yes, this is my exciting life, squeezing my dog’s popa.  I thought you’d want to know. 

For a non-medical type of person like me, this was a big deal.  Someone please submit my name for the Nobel Prize, or whatever would be commensurate along the lines of giving relief to a dog’s popa.  Misha asks that you spell his name correctly, then again, he might prefer to to remain anonymous.

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4 Comments : Leave a Reply

  1. avatar hoonew says:

    Oh my God, you should get a Nobel for this service to doggiedom. No way could I attempt this.

    • avatar admin says:

      Ha, ha, ha, I hear you, hoonew! I think of them as our fur-babies, and having never had to wipe a little one’s bottom… well… I guess it all balances out.

  2. avatar Sybil says:

    My husband used to have to do it to one of our dogs all the time. OMG, did it smell hideous. You can add this achievement to your resume and remember, “Popa goes the weasel ! “

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