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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18915
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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What causes rectal bleeding in dogs? My dog's bleeding from his butt.

Resolved Question:

What causes rectal bleeding in dogs/ I just got home from work and my basset hound has blood on his rectum. I tried to clean it, but I can't tell if it's a "hot spot" that he's irritated or something else.He is not presenting any other symptoms
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for the quick reply Customer.

While I cannot diagnose this over the internet I can tell you the following :

There would be a number of possible causes of blood in the rectal area some serious some trivial :

A. blood from the outside of the rectal area : This could be caused by a wound in the area, an anal gland abscess or the rupture of a peri-rectal tumour amongst other causes. The thing to do here would be to clean the area with warm salt water and then see if any obvious cause is visible externally, of course consult your vet if something is visisble.

B. Blood coming from the alimentary tract : This can be caused by disease situations such as parvo virus infection or severe diarrhoea. Normally though your dog would be quite ill and would be showing other symptoms.

However blood in the faeces in otherwise normal dogs is actually very common in the and I have been asked about it many times by clients over the years. Provided your dog is bright and alert, happy and eating you have little to worry about when there is a small amount of bright red blood in the faeces or in the rectal area when you have just seen it on a small number of occasions.

While there are no guarantees small bleeds of this sort are usually the result of your dog straining and that might happen if your dog has diarrhoea or constipation, or it may be caused by something your dog ate or related to your recent change in food.

I always say to clients that if you blow your nose often enough you will get a nose bleed and this situation is much the same, it is just a rupture of a small blood vessel close to the anus which will often resolve without treatment. You have much more to worry about if you see dark blood in your dog's faeces which can represent a bleed from further up the intestinal tract.

My advice is: Provided your dog is otherwise bright and happy and it has just been one or two incidents of blood in the area you have little to worry about. If it happens on a more regular basis or suddenly gets worse you should have you dog checked by your vet just to be on the safe side.

If I have not covered your question fully enough or you would like to ask more I will be online for the next hour or so and I will be at your disposal

Scott Nimmo BVMS MRCVS
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