Can Dogs Get Hemorrhoids? Hemorrhoids Can Be Painful, but Can Dogs Get Them?

BY | December 07 | COMMENTS PUBLISHED BY
Can Dogs Get Hemorrhoids?

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Dogs cannot get hemorrhoids. While dogs can face many anal sac problems, hemorrhoids are not one of them. If your pet is showing symptoms of anal gland issues, take it to a vet soon.

You've probably heard of human hemorrhoids, but it's rare to have them in dogs. In fact, having one isn't even a guarantee that your dog has a problem. It means something is up with their anal glands or rectum.

The good news is that if you do notice anything amiss down there, it can be taken care of easily enough by your vet. So let's look at these pesky little buggers and how they can affect our four-legged friends.

What's Going On Down There?

Hemorrhoids are swollen blood vessels in the anal canal. There are two types of hemorrhoids: internal, which are located inside the rectum, and external, which are found outside of it. Hemorrhoids can be painful and uncomfortable for your dog, but they're not life-threatening.

Many things can cause the condition, including genetics, diet, age, or even being overweight or underweight. While there isn't much, you can do about these causes if they exist in your pet's family history or lifestyle choices other than ensuring they get enough exercise, so they don't become overweight. You can also take steps toward spotting potential problems before they become an issue for their health.

The Symptoms of Canine Anal Gland Problems

If you suspect your dog is experiencing anal gland problems, look out for the following symptoms:

  • They're in pain or discomfort. If your dog is panting, licking itself excessively, or squirms when they sit down, you should take them to the vet as soon as possible. This could also indicate other anal sac diseases, such as perianal fistulas, perianal hernia, and prolapsed rectum. You can give temporary relief with pet medication, such as Glandex, Acepromazine, or Metacam.

  • They have difficulty defecating. Hemorrhoids can be painful and cause straining while passing stool, leading to fecal incontinence (aka poop leaking out). If this happens with your pup and they don't seem to be able to control it, see a vet right away.

  • Blood in their feces. This symptom is one of the tell-tale signs of canine hemorrhoids. This symptom has to be taken seriously as it can also be a sign of some very serious health conditions depending on the color of the blood.

What Are the Causes?

The causes of canine hemorrhoids can be grouped into a handful of categories. Diet and exercise play a significant role in the development of canine hemorrhoids, as do age and genetics. The most common cause is hereditary (inherited from your pet's parents), but diet is another leading factor in developing these unpleasant lumps.

Suppose you have been feeding your dog high-protein foods as part of his regular diet. In that case, it may have contributed to his current condition. A study by Hill's Pet Nutrition found that a higher-protein diet will increase the chances of healthy dogs developing inflammation, making it easier for them to develop conditions such as hemorrhoids.

Exercise can also be an issue if you allow your pup access to areas where it tends to chew on sticks or other objects that could scratch his delicate bottom tissue, which could lead directly toward developing painful hemorrhoids over time.

A Path Towards Prevention

If your dog is showing signs of hemorrhoids, the best thing you can do is consult with your veterinarian to find out what is causing the discomfort. Your vet may recommend a topical Hydrocortisone cream like Zymox, which can relieve the pain. You may be able to avoid treatment by simply changing your dog's diet and increasing activity levels. Supplements like Glandex for dogs promote healthy anal gland function and can be easily added to dog food.

If this does not work, try changing their food to one with more fiber and less fat. This will help keep poop soft and easy for them to pass without straining too much. You may consider a digestive supplement like Weruva Pumpkin supplement or fiber-rich dog food like the digestive care variant of Hills Prescription Diet.

Water intake should be monitored as well. Dogs need plenty of water for their intestines to get rid of the waste easily, so if they're not drinking enough, it could cause constipation, leading to a path toward hemorrhoids.

Conclusion

Hopefully, this article has given you insight into what hemorrhoids in dogs are and how to treat them. While there is no cure for this condition, there are things we can do to keep our pups healthy and happy. 

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