Have you ever wondered why dogs always greet other dogs by smelling their rear ends? It’s because they have anal sacs that excrete odors that are unique to each dog. Each time dogs have a bowel movement, the anal sacs are emptied. Occasionally, the anal sacs can become clogged—which can cause the sacs to fill with fluid. When that happens, your dog can experience a feeling of fullness or discomfort. Small dogs are prone to anal sac clogs. If your dog is scooting around the yard on its bottom, it may have clogged anal sacs. Here are some easy-to-follow instructions that will help you drain the sacs. Head for the Tub The fluid inside the anal sacs can be quite pungent. You’re going to want to wash your dog as soon as you’re done draining the fluid. Therefore, the bathtub is the best place to drain your dogs’ anal sacs. If your dog refuses to get inside the tub, take your pet outside and place a bucket filled with warm, sudsy water near you. Wear the Appropriate Attire Draining the anal sacs can get messy. You’ll need to wear something that you don’t mind getting dirty or throwing away afterwards. You’ll also need to wear a pair of rubber surgical gloves, which you can purchase at any drug store. Assume the Position Have your dog stand up. Kneel down at your dog’s side. Holding a cloth or paper towel, place one hand in front of your dog’s anus. The cloth will allow you catch the fluid as it is excreted from the sacs. Don’t kneel in back of your dog, or you may get covered in secretions. Drain the Sacs Carefully place your thumb and index finger on opposite sides of your dogs’ anal opening. You should feel two sacs about the size of peas. Press down on those sacs and move your finger and thumb upward towards the anus. You should see a mucus-type discharge flow from your dogs’ anus. Continue pressing until there is no more discharge. Call the Vet If you can’t get any secretions from the anal sacs or they don’t empty completely, you should contact a veterinarian. In some cases, anal sacs can become infected, which may require surgical assistance. Anal sacs usually empty on their own. Occasionally, they can become clogged by hair or body oils. If your dog is exhibiting signs of discomfort—such as increased scooting or licking—it may need to have its anal sacs emptied. Contact a facility like the Northwest Animal Hospital for further information or to set up an appointment for your...

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If you’re getting ready to move into your first apartment, you might be considering the benefits of having a dog to keep you company. Whether you’ve got your eye on those pitbulls for sale down the road or you’re thinking about adoption, there are a few things you need to consider. Here are some tips to ease your pup’s transition into a new home. Don’t Limit Yourself to Small Breeds Unless you’re renting an apartment with a weight limit for pets, don’t limit your search to just small breeds. You might think that little dogs are best for apartment spaces, but they aren’t always the best choice. In fact, some small dog breeds are ill-suited for apartments because they can be too vocal. Also, some small breeds are very high-energy or suffer from anxiety, which can make apartment living a challenge. Some of the medium to large breeds can actually be a better fit than you’d think in an apartment. Sometimes, larger breeds are more relaxed than smaller dogs, making them a calmer household member. If you’re interested in a larger dog that’s more likely to relax all day than run around, he or she may be a better fit than a smaller breed that’s going to have too much energy from being cooped up. Make Your Apartment a Dog-Friendly Environment Consider how a dog is most likely to maneuver in your apartment when you’re choosing your furniture. Decorate in a way that leaves plenty of floor space for your pup so that he or she can move around at will. You might even want to consider a bench seat in front of a window so your dog can curl up and watch people passing by on the street. Don’t Underestimate the Value of a Trainer If you want to stay on good terms with the landlord while still having a dog to keep you company, consider investing in a dog trainer. The trainer can help your dog acclimate to apartment living, and may be able to help you deal with specific problem behaviors, such as excessive barking. Getting your first pet is an exciting opportunity. If you want the relationship to be a happy one, though, you need to be sure you get the right dog for your needs. With the tips presented here, you can find the right dog for your apartment and even help him or her to be more comfortable in the new...

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