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Dr. John
Dr. John, Texas Veterinarian
Category: Dog
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Experience:  Over 14 years of clinical veterinary experience
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I have a 2 yr. old spaniel mix. Recently he has been licking

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I have a 2 yr. old spaniel mix. Recently he has been licking his behind. I stop him whenever I can. I have just notice that his behind area is purplish color and a little swollen. He just recently (a month ago) been treated for a bacterial infection on his back do to a food allergy. It turned out it was do to the "rawhide" bone treats I have been giving him. I have removed this from his diet and his back infection disappeared (also with the help of antibiotics and medicated baths. Could his "behind" problem be a spreading of the last infection? or can it be that his anal glands need to be expressed? (been reading about it). I've been taking him in weedy environments lately and he has been sitting on weeds>>>>? He has been checked for worms by the vet regularly.
Also I have an appointment for the groomers in the morning. They express the anus. And I plan to mack an appointment for another vet visit tomorrow..
Hello. Thanks for writing in.

Does the purplish area seem swollen or painful for him?

Is it just to the side of his anus?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

It does seem swollen but all around including the bottom base of his of his tail. Besides him being annoyed by it a couple times a day (he quickly jerks to go lick it) he seem like his usual happy self. No distinct change in behavior. Except for that.

Thanks for the information. I have a feeling that he may have an anal gland abscess. These are common in dogs and can get big and uncomfortable. I would have your vet check it out tomorrow. If that is what it is, and it hasn't already started draining, your vet can open and drain it. The purple color to the skin may be necrotic or dying skin where an abscess is about to rupture. When having the anal glands expressed, it is usually best to have your vet do it. Most groomers just express them from pushing up on the glands from the outside. Your vet will usually express them from the inside with a rectal exam. That way makes sure they are fully expressed. You can try putting a warm compress on the area tonight. If it is an abscess, you may be able to get it to start draining on its own. Your vet would still need to flush it out and put him on antibiotics, though. Please let me know if you have any other questions or concerns before rating. Hope this helps.
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Besides the warm compress, is there anything else I can do while waiting for my next vet app.? (usually takes about a week or so)

Is it ok to get him groomed tomorrow?

Should they NOT express the anus? or can both the groomers and vet do it..

Just the warm compress is all you should do now. I would have your vet check out the area before thinking about grooming. If it is abscessed, I wouldn't get him groomed tomorrow. The groomer may not even want to groom him tomorrow if that is the case. I would let your vet express the anal glands when necessary. Hope this helps.