Inflamed anal glands in dogs (anal gland inflammation) are usually caused by a blockage or adhesion of the anal glands at the anus (anal sac blockage, e.g. due to diarrhea in dogs). Normally, the anal glands in dogs secrete a secretion that is released together with the feces. It is used to set scent markers.
However, if the anal glands are clogged or stuck together, this secretion can no longer be released. It then becomes viscous and can only be squeezed out by careful massaging. The anal glands increase in size and increasingly hinder the discharge of feces and anal secretions. If bacteria then also penetrate the anal sacs, they can cause anal gland inflammation.
In addition, an excessive function of the anal glands (e.g. hormonal) or allergies are possible causes of anal gland inflammation. Allergic reactions affecting the skin and mucous membranes may also affect the anal glands and cause inflammation of the glands.
In some cases, poor hygiene is the cause of blocked anal sacs: for example, unkempt fur that is very dense and stuck together by feces, especially in long-haired dogs, can obstruct the intestinal passage and the drainage of anal secretions. The veterinarian will also palpate the anus thoroughly if the anal glands are inflamed. Among other things, they look to see if any tumors are obstructing the bowel outlet that may have led to the anal gland inflammation.