Anal Gland Disease (Impaction & Abscess)

Anal Glands Problems in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs

Anal Glands Problems in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs include:

  • Impaction
  • Infection & Abscess
  • Rapture
  • Tumor

Bulldog Anal Gland 5 x MUST KNOW

  1. The glands are embedded at the two sides of the rectum (anus)
  2. Obstructed anal ducts lead to infected abscesses that can rapture
  3. A problem can present as bloody smelly purulent discharge and butt scooting
  4. Treatment includes expressing (emptying) the glands and if needed medication
  5. Prevention includes Dr. Kraemer’s Anal Gland V4B therapeutics 

The owners of this bulldog community prefer prevention over RX

Bulldog Anal Gland Bundle - Ultimate

Bulldog Anal Gland Disease ANATOMY

Your bulldog’s anal glands are embedded in the anus muscles, thus not readily visible. Each one of the pairs has its own glandular sac and attached ducts that normally empty into the rectum during defecation.

Anal glands are notorious for their oily, pasty, grey-colored residue that permeates with a pungent, unpleasant odor.

Anal Glands Problems in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs FUNCTION:

The current medical purpose of these glands is not clear, but it’s speculated that during pre-domestication times they served to mark territory and as identification by scent, which might explain why dogs sniff that area.

Anal Glands Problems occur when their normal drainage is impaired. On those occasions, they become swollen and infected.

Anal Glands Disease in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs PRESENTATION: 

  • SCOOTING: Dragging the back end on the floor
  • BITING & ITCHING: trying to bite the back end
  • REDNESS: Redness of the perianal area due to self-trauma and inflammation
  • PAIN: Crying in pain, bite their hind end
  • DEPRESSION: Stop eating, act irritable

 Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Anal Gland DISEASE TYPE

  1. IMPACTED: most common bulldog anal gland problem
  2. INFLAMED (Sacculitis): a complicated form of impaction (redness, swelling, pain)
  3. ABSCESS: an infected, inflamed anal gland that can abscess and rupture (open wound)
  4. TUMOR: On the rare occasions, the sac can become cancerous


Bulldog anal gland impaction is the most common anal gland problem seen by the veterinary team.

An experienced team member can manually express the bulldog’s impacted anal glands and relieve the impaction.

Dr. Kraemer’s Bulldog Anal Gland Disease RULE OF THUMB:

Expressing anal glands in bulldogs should be done rectally.

RECTAL: When done rectally, the veterinary team member can feel if the gland is full or empty and if they are expressible.

NON-RECTAL: In contrast, when done by pressure from the outside, as many groomers do (non-rectal), one can’t tell if they are empty or complete, nor can they assure you that they were fully expressed.

Bulldog and French Bulldog Anal Glands Disease PREVENTION:

Bulldog Weight:

Obesity could be related to chronic anal gland problems, weight loss might help.

Bulldog Diet:

A blended, high-fiber diet might help with healthy BM and natural gland expression.

Bulldog Therapeutic Supplements:

Bulldog Comfort Therapeutic 

Dr. Kraemer’s  Bully Comfort & AchLess Supplements to help relieve discomfort

Bulldog Botanical Fiber therapeutic 

Botanical natural fibers Can help relieve the gland and prevent impaction, abscess, and other colonic diseases responsive to fiber.

Dr. Kraemer’s V4B Bully Gentle Move & Anal Gland Care

Members of this community prefer prevention over RX

Anal Gland Disease in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs preventive chews

Dr. Kraemer’s “Gentle Move & Anal Gland Care” are palatable chews that are easy to administer as treats.


Most bulldog and French bulldog owners opt to have the glands expressed by an experienced veterinary team member, however, for the brave bully owner seeking “fame & glory,” it can be attempted at home.

GLOVE: Place a disposable glove on your hand, anal gland residue is not pleasant.

KY JELLY: Place a lubricant on fingers if attempting to express rectally.

TEAMWORK: Most times, you will need someone to hold your dog and keep her/him upright.

DIGIT: Insert one-third of your thumb (for right anal gland) or index finger (for left AG) into your dog’s rectum fingernail deep, and with your respective thumb or index finger, grab the outer wall. Move the rectal finger up and down between 4-5 o’clock (rt) or 7-8 o’clock (left) and try to locate a pea to grape size bump.

SQUEEZE: Try and squeeze it, you should feel anal gland contents coming out.

INSPECT: Check your rectal finger for the residue and inspect it for abnormalities and blood.

WIPE: Wipe the area with a bully antiseptic wipe or gel.

FREQUENCY: Each bulldog’s needs are different, start once monthly, and if empty, you can extend it.


Bulldog Anal Gland EXPRESS:

I recommend that it be done rectally, by an experienced, veterinary team member.

Bulldog Anal Gland SEDATION

In some cases, the pet might need to be sedated:

  • ABSCESS: Repair ruptured anal gland abscess
  • PAIN: too painful to be expressed awake
  • MEDICATE: Flush and medically pack the duct/gland

Bulldog Anal Gland MEDICATION:

  • ANTIBIOTICS: for abscesses or infected glands
  • PAIN RELIEF: such as NSAIDs and Gabapentin
  • ANTI-INFLAMMATORY: such as cortisone and NSAIDs

Bulldog Anal Gland SUPPLEMENTS:

Like Dr. Kraemer’s V4B Bully


  • Bully Comfort and Ache Relief Chews


  • Bully Fish Oil Immune-Joint-Skin Chews

AG EXPRESS: Natural anal gland emptying

  • Bully Gentle Move & Anal Gland Health Chews

WIPES: Clean irritated and infected areas with

  • V4B Bully Antiseptic Wipes

For Anal Gland Affordable Bundles click HERE

Members of this community prefer prevention over RX

Bulldog and French Bulldog Anal Gland SURGERY:

At times, anal gland surgical removal is recommended (sacculectomy). Reasons for this could be:

  • Chronic recurrent anal gland infection 
  • Tumor of the Anal Glands

anal gland and sac removal

Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Anal Gland TIPS & WARNINGS

Bulldog Anal Gland TAIL, ANAL & PERIANAL:

The most common reasons for back-end itching and redness in bulldogs are:


The anal gland odor is often described as a “Yeasty or Fishy Smell”.\

A severe bulldog skin fold dermatitis can have a similar smell, thus, make sure to examine your bully’s tail folds. Both should be wiped with Dr. Kraemer’s bully V4B Antiseptic Wipe.

bulldog anal gland disease therapy

Bulldog Anal Gland  PREVENTIVE CARE:

Familiarize yourself with your bulldog’s back end (tail, rectum, perianal area, vaginal folds) and adhere to my “Zen & Bulldog Maintenance” preventive program that includes

  • Regular wiping with bully antiseptic wipes
  • Expressing the glands when called for
  • Providing natural ache relief, anti-inflammatory, and anal gland emptying supplements.

Bulldog Anal Gland Disease DR. VISIT:

If you suspect an anal gland problem, see your vet before it turns into a bigger problem.

Bulldog Anal Gland Disease RECTAL DIGITAL EXPRESS:

Expressing anal glands in bulldogs should be done rectally, when done from the outside one cannot tell if they are empty. When done rectally, the team member can feel if the gland is full or empty and if they are expressible.


Anal Gland Impaction PAIN WARNING:

Expressing anal glands can be painful, at times, mild sedation is required.

Bulldog Anal Gland GROOMERS WARNING:

Groomers, and even medical staff, sometimes offer (or are asked by the pet owner) to perform a preventive anal gland expression.

It might be best to leave the glands alone if your bulldog is not exhibiting any anal gland-related problems and never exhibited one in the past. Repeated prophylactic anal gland expression might start a problem rather than prevent one.


Anal gland problems can compound bully tail fold dermatitis in bulldogs and French bulldogs suffering from tight, deep-pocketed, or corkscrew tails.

This might happen due to anal gland debris trapped in the fold and self-trauma due to itching and scooting.


Expressing anal glands can be painful, at times mild sedation is required.

Anal Gland Abcess SURGERY WARNING:

Anal sac surgical removal should be reserved for tumors and severe chronic cases.

There are some potential risks such as:

ANESTHESIA: As for any surgical procedure

INCONTINENCE: The anal glands are embedded near the anal sphincter. Scarring or injury to the nerves and muscles could lead to some degree of fecal incontinence.

DRAINING TRACT: If the surgeon fails to remove all the glandular tissue, or an infection of the surgical site occurs, an abscess with a draining tract will form forcing a revision (cleanup) of the original surgery.

An Ounce Of PREVENTION Is Worth A Pound Of CURE”

anal gland impaction in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs store

*This guide was compiled courtesy of Dr. Kraemer, a “MUST READ” manual for any current or future bully owner.