One of the weird behaviors we see in dogs is dragging their butts, widely known as dog scooting. Pet owners usually don’t know whether to laugh or worry when dogs drag their buts. So, what’s the root of this behavior? Why do dogs drag their butts?
Dogs drag their butts to relieve the rectal discomfort caused by pain, itching, and irritation. Dog scooting is usually a sign of an intestinal tapeworm, trauma to the butt, or irritation.
I know that most of you here came with concerns about your dog’s health. Understandably so. Usually, scooting doesn’t result in something serious but a visit to the vet is recommended.
You need to examine your dog’s butt and follow its behavior. Follow this guide to find out whether your dog needs to be taken to the vet.
The most common reason why dogs will start scooting out of nowhere is intestinal parasites. Dogs can get intestinal parasites by drinking from a questionable water source or by eating something dirty.
Fortunately, this rarely happens with house dogs. The most common intestinal parasite dos get is the tapeworm. And dogs can’t get tapeworm by ingesting the eggs of the tapeworm. For a dog to get a tapeworm, the eggs have to enter into the bloodstream via an infected flea. [Source]
So, dogs get tapeworms from flea bites. When dogs have a tapeworm, the eggs exit when they are mature and when the dog goes number two. The eggs passing will cause irritation, itching, and pain in the butt. Dogs will like to get rid of this discomfort so they will start scooting.
Tapeworms are nothing serious if they are caught early on. You get rid of the parasites by giving your dog a pill you can get from your vet. To find out if your dog has tapeworm, examine its feces after it’s gone number 2. Look for white eggs that look like rice.
[Related Article: Why Do Dogs Chase Their Tails Like A Clown?]
Just like us, the skin around the butt of a dog is very sensitive. Because the skin is so sensitive it can easily get irritated by some environmental causes or products that you have used on your dog.
If your dog has sat on an irritating, that may be the reason for the scooting. Also, the dog may have dipped its tail into the irritant, and then, touched the tail with the butt.
The dog’s rectum can get irritated by some of the grooming products you have used on it. If you are adding some oils for the coat or a shampoo. If those products got in touch with the butt, it can get irritated. The chances of this happening are quite low. It usually happens when the tail is covered in the products.
Anal Glands Issues
Dogs use their feces to mark territory as well. They have two anal glands located on the entrance of the rectum. These anal glands are like pouches that fill up with liquid. Occasionally, dogs will release the liquid in the glands along with the bowel movement.
Although dogs find a use for the anal glands, sometimes, they can cause problems. The thing is the anal glands can catch a disease. They stop working so the pouch gets filled up and the liquid is never released. The liquid build-up can irritate the dog causing pain and itching. [Source]
Fortunately, problematic anal glands are easy to spot. The glands are visible to the eye, so you can see how they look. The abscess on the glands will be obvious. The glands will look swelled up because of the excess liquid.
Anal glands disease in dogs is usually treated by a vet. The vet should squeeze out the extra liquid in the glands. Sometimes, the vet will also prescribe antibiotics.
Food allergies can be the cause of anal glands issues as well. A diet that doesn’t include enough solids will affect bowel movement. The glands release the liquid because of the pressure. A diet with no solids will not have enough pressure to release the liquid in the glands.
[Related Questions: Can Dogs Eat Oatmeal? Is It 100% Safe To Feed Your Dog?]
Lastly, your dog may have experienced some trauma around its butt. This will cause pain and discomfort which will lead to your dog dragging its butt.
It’s very unlikely for a dog to injure its butt with something in the environment. It’s been known to happen though, so try to remember if something happened.
Most of the time, dogs injure their anal glands with their bowel movements. If your dog chewed a bad bone or it swallowed something that it’s hard to digest, the object will come out with the movement. As we said before, irritated anal glands will cause discomfort. The dog will start scooting because of that.
How To Stop Dog Scooting
It’s understandable that pet owners will like to stop this dog behavior. Dog scooting can be embarrassing in public but most importantly it’s a sign of a health issue or an injury.
First of all, remember that scooting isn’t compulsive behavior. The dog feels pain and discomfort so it takes action against it. So, it’s not necessarily bad behavior. It’s bad only in the way that your dog may be having health problems.
To stop dog scooting you must cure the problems you are having. You need to find the root of this behavior. Why is your dog dragging its butt? Look through the causes of dog scooting and treat with proper treatment.
Related Questions And Other FAQs
Is Dog Scooting Serious
Dog scooting is a sign of an issue with the anal glands or skin irritation around the butt. Most of the time, the cause of dog scooting is not that serious but if left untreated it can lead to more serious issues. Seek treatment as soon as your dog starts scooting.
How Do You Treat A Dog Scooting
Dog scooting is usually caused by a disease in the anal glands. Anal glands diseases are usually treated by a vet. The vet will either pop the excess liquid in the glands or will treat it with antibiotics.