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chewing hair off of tail?

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.

  
Lila Rae

I'm pretty sure- I'm a doberman..
 
 
Barked: Sun Dec 13, '09 7:45pm PST 
Lila Rae has started to chew her tail and it is actually started to lose hair. She just had an entire work up done about a month or so ago when she was peeing excessively, so I know there is no underlying medical condition as her tests came out perfect! (she gave blood to check her organ functions and her bladder was aspirated to check for any UTI).

The vet has suspected in the past that she has a flea allergy, but I'm thinking it may be her anal glands? Could this be too far off?

Thanks!
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Sallie Mae

Sallie Mae
 
 
Barked: Sun Dec 13, '09 8:04pm PST 
Yes---you could be right. One of my 3 bites his tail for that reason. It is very difficult to express them so it is a vet trip for him. I may just not know exactly how, but I am sure that some Dogsters can give advise on this.
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Scruffy

poopy butt
 
 
Barked: Sun Dec 13, '09 8:06pm PST 
My first guess would be fleas. Is she on any preventative?
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Leah, CGC

All the Beauty- with none of the- Brains
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 14, '09 4:16am PST 
There are two ways to express anal glands or more aptly named anal sacs. Externally or Internally
- Externally means placing some pressure with a gloved hand on the outside of the anus at aprox 4 and 8 (think of the numbers on a clock these are where the sacs are located) - usually directed the pressure from about a 1/4 inch out towards the anus helps "squeeze" the material out - make sure you are holding the tail in an upright position
- Internally requires a vet visit IMHO since it can be a little more dangerous and if done incorrectly you risk an anal sac abcess or rupture which are NO fun at all! Basically the vet or tech will place a finger inside the anus and the thumb outside and gently squeeze the sac empty

If the anal sac emits a light yellowish material that usually means it is normal. If the material is thick, pasty, gritty, gray, black or green it usually indicates an impaction.

Now if you plan on trying this at home - BE WARE - this stuff is the smelliest material you have EVER encountered - like lowtide at the beach on a hot day! - I recommend outside and wear clothing you don't particularly care about - always wear gloves and have some doggy cologne or scent eradicator near by - in a pinch hydrogen peroxide works - don't let the little one back in to rub his tushy all over your new couch either HAHA!

Normally these sacs are expressed naturally when a dog takes a BM./ However they can become occluded by a mucous plug which will make this difficult. Some people have had luck adding additional fiber to the diet to help avoid future problems.
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Leah, CGC

All the Beauty- with none of the- Brains
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 14, '09 4:20am PST 
oh also check this link for more info AS

and flea allergies could also be a problem - remember with an allergy it only takes ONE bite even if the flea dies right after and you never see another one
Check out this link Stupid Fleas or it could be some combination of both!
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Lila Rae

I'm pretty sure- I'm a doberman..
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 14, '09 6:57am PST 
Thanks Sallie Mae!

Scruffy- She is on monthly advantage. She has been ever since my vet thought she may have a flea allergy. She also has a lot of environmental allergies and a possible food allergy. (the poor little one)

Thanks Leah for all the great info! I have tried the external way before..

The main reason I thought it was anal glands is because I’ve expressed them before.. but I’m never quite sure if they are emptied. I checked her yesterday and sure enough they expressed easily, so I was assuming that meant they are full. I just called my groomer and made an appointment for this morning!

I read that adding a little unsweetened applesauce can add fiber to the diet! I wanted to try that.
I've also add carrots to her food periodically... but that doesn't seem to be helping. She actually just started having the gland problems recently.
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Gucci

Just love- them!!!
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 14, '09 7:13am PST 
OH no Lila Rae is chompin' on her tail. I'm glad her test came back negative. I can't say it's anal glands but it is a good idea to have that clean out on your next vet visit. Gucci seems more compfortable when ever we have it done for him. You could try a flee control just to be on the safe side, I understand if you're hesitant with all the chemicals in these products. There are natural alternatives and at the risk of sounding like a salesman my wife and I have benefited from this book. It is chock full of helpful health information. Check it out and decide for your self. Be well http://84profit.earthmedic.hop.clickbank.net

Edited by author Mon Dec 14, '09 7:34am PST

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Gucci

Just love- them!!!
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 14, '09 7:18am PST 
oops I just read your follow up and learned something thanks. I will also try the applesauce. Thanks.
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