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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 19596
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
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My mix breed dog has started to curve her tail sideways at a

Customer Question

My mix breed dog has started to curve her tail sideways at a slant and her rear end curves in direction of tail .She started doing this 2 days ago,no extra exercise,no swimming,o stress nothing changed.Could it be an injury from playing with otherdogs? She is senior,shelter adoption had her 6mos.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

In order to supply you with an informed answer, it is necessary for me to collect some additional information from you. When I receive your response or reply, it will likely take me between 30-45 minutes to type up my reply if I am still online when I receive notice that you replied. I hope you can be patient.

I know you said no swimming but what about baths or getting wet in the rain, etc?

Is there any swelling around the rectum or on the tail.

How old is she?

If you had to guess at her breeds, what would she be?

Is she spayed? I assume yes, but have to ask?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
had put Sentry Pro XFT on neck and back near tail as per directions 3 days before this happened.Have used product 2 other times ok. No oil,sprays,baths,just little rain when went outside to do business,not soaking wet just damp.No change in diet or exercise.I have had her for 6 mos from shelter 9-10 yrs old heartworm pos,but on Heartgard as per Vet. She is a little jumpy when touching back by tail whimpers a little,but no reaction when petting gently on back and down to tail. Her back end curves toward direction tail ia turned to at times other times walks ok.Tail curves to both sides not just one side,she has always been a big tail wagger rotating in circles and back and forth,now no complete circles.Current on all vaccines,spayed five and half mos ago,no problems.Part hound,lag,shepherd mix 60 lbs. solid very energetic,has dental problems(can't afford dental care at this time)breath bad.tried brushing teeth ,it's like wrestling a bear.She is really strong and solid! Got them brushed about once a week,feed denta-stix,she is on senior vitamins,glucosamin-chondroitin,salmon oil capsules.She is a doll,but have maxed out care credit on both my adoptees and right now can't take to our vet for at least 3-4 weeks her tail is very solid and thick from tip to end.hope you can help E- mail me when have answer,I have Doctors appt I need to go to,thank you very much.
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

She may have cold tail. She may also have injured her tail, so you will want to check her tail over well. She could also have a problem with her anal glands which will cause a dog to hold their tail down or to one side as well. The anal glands are 2 sacs on either side of the anus at about the 4' o'clock and 8 o'clock positions. If your dog is continually licking their anus and dragging it, it could also indicate that they are full. This problem can usually be resolved by emptying out the glands. To empty them or express them, you will want to cover the area with a tissue and press your finger on the dog's anal glands with an upward motion. A foul smelling liquid should come out. If nothing comes out and your dog appears to be in pain, you should take him to the Vet. Your vet can do this easily, as he is experienced at it. Excellent site on anal glands

http://www.dr-dan.com/analsac.htm

http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body_anal_sacs.html

It doesn't sound like an anal gland problem, but better to have the information than not. There is a condition "cold tail" that Labradors, English Pointers, English Setters, Foxhounds and Beagles sometimes get which causes them to hold their tail close to the body or to one side or the other. You can read about it here.

http://www.geocities.com/ccrhearts/Tail.html

http://www.thelabradorclub.com/oldsite/cold.htm

Cold tail often happens after a bath, swimming or any activity where the tail gets wet, so this can not be ruled out. It is possible that this is what you are seeing with your dog. With cold tail it sometimes takes up to 2 weeks for the tail to recover. Some owners feel the administration of anti-inflammatory medication aid in a faster recovery.

Dog's have sebaceous glands and perianal glands at the base of their tails. Sometimes, these glands can become clogged and swollen. A warm compress on the spot and cleaning with Benzyl peroxide gel may help with the problem. I would also use some Neosporin or triple antibiotic cream on the area as well. Dogs with this swelling of the sebaceous gland may have a problem with hypothyroidism or a hormonal imbalance, so I would suggest you have your dog seen by your vet if you do not see improvement.

I hope this information is helpful to you. I am sorry that a definite cause can't be determined, but these should give you an idea. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer.

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

I would check the anal glands though because often a dog will bend the body around when they have an anal gland issue.