Dog Scooting: Why It Happens and How To Stop It

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Usually, our initial reaction when we see a dog in a seated position dragging its bottom along the carpet, yard, or floor is to laugh. Little did we know that this action, called scooting, is a canine’s way of telling us that something is wrong “down there.” Your dog is trying to relieve the discomfort, itchiness, or pain it’s feeling.

Dog scooting can indicate specific medical issues, from mild to severe, so you shouldn’t take it for granted. Some simple home remedies, such as feeding your furry friend high fiber dog foods, can resolve some cases. Others will most likely require treatment.

Dog Scooting

Dog Scooting Causes and Solutions

So why does scooting happen, and how can you help your dog? Here’s a list of the most common reasons dogs scoot and what you can do to help them:

Minor Irritation

If your dog starts to scoot after grooming, it may be due to irritation caused by dog grooming products. It could be that his perfume or shampoo got under his tail and around his anus. Apart from scooting, you might also see your dog rolling around on its back due to itchiness.

Apply a warm compress to relieve the inflammation and itchiness. You must also contact your groomer so that they can use hypoallergenic products the next time you bring your dog to them. Also, consider using homemade dog shampoo. The area might also be irritated because of nicks, razor burns, and tiny cuts.

What you need to do is slowly lift your dog’s tail and check for any signs of cuts, nicks, and burns. Contact your veterinarian if you see any to ensure you apply the proper treatment. On the other hand, if you notice any items stuck on your dog’s fur around or near its anus, such as bubblegum, candy, and poop, simply remove them as they may be why your dog scoots.

Anal Sac Trauma

Some dog groomers were trained to express the glands manually, leading to anal sac trauma and inflammation. Continually doing so will lead to injury and loss of muscle tone required for natural anal sac expression during defecation.

The only solution to this is to have the vet check your pup, as they’re the only ones who can prescribe the right medication and treatment plan. Also, make sure you ask your groomer not to include anal sac expression when you bring your dog for grooming. Better yet, choose a new groomer.

Clogged Anal Sacs

The small anal sacs of dogs have a fishy-smelling liquid that gets released when they defecate. If something clogs the sacs, there will be fluid build-up that could lead to sac inflammation and liquid solidification. You’ll also notice that your dog releases bloody discharge.

If left untreated, it can lead to pain, infection, anal gland blockage, abscess, and other serious health conditions. The only solution is to visit the veterinarian, as your dog might need antibiotics, pain relievers, and more.


Dog scooting can also be due to food allergies, which your veterinarian can diagnose through testing. Your veterinarian will then prescribe anti-allergy medications and injections, as well as dietary changes and regular flea control.

Parasitic Infection

Another common reason your dog scoots is the presence of an intestinal parasite, especially tapeworms. Once these microorganisms mature, they will exit through your dog’s anus together with the poop. This can cause irritation and itching around your dog’s anus. Thus, you’ll also observe rice-like segments on their beds and feces apart from your dog scooting.

Once you see these telltale signs, bring your dog to the vet so that they can examine your dog and have their poop checked. If they’re positive for parasitic infection, your vet will prescribe anti-parasitic or dewormers that they would need to take for a few days.

General Tips To Help Prevent Dog Scooting

Don’t wait until your dog scoots due to any of the causes listed above. As they say, prevention is always better than cure. As responsible dog parents, here are the things that you need to do:

  • Feed Your Dog a Balanced Diet: A well-balanced diet will ensure your canine friend releases feces with the right consistency, squeezing and emptying their anal glands properly. This will prevent clogging and irritation.
  • Deworm Regularly: Don’t forget the regular deworming schedule of your dog to prevent parasitic infection.
  • Add Fiber to the Diet: Aside from a well-balanced diet, it will also help if you feed your dog with the right amount of fiber. It can help prevent digestive and anal gland issues. You can consider giving them fiber supplements but consult your veterinarian first.

Dog Scooting No More!

As funny as it appears, you need to stop your dog from scooting by finding the cause and having it treated or managed. You must also be responsible enough to help prevent it from occurring or recurring. Always consult your veterinarian and choose the right groomer, food, and other products you use and feed your canine baby.

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