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Inflammation of the anal gland in cats

Dr. Schlotterbeck explains

What are anal glands?

Similar to dogs, cats also have anal glands to the left and right of the anus. 

These small glands produce an oily and smelly fluid that is normally emptied during defecation. The function of these glands is to release scents that serve to mark territory. 

Inflammation of the anal glands in cats 

If the anal glands are not “expressed” properly when passing stool, which can happen quickly with diarrhea, the secretion thickens and it becomes increasingly difficult to empty the contents. Inflammation can occur, which is very unpleasant for the cat.

Compared to dogs, such inflammation is rare in cats.

How does anal gland inflammation manifest itself in cats?

Typical symptoms include frequent licking of the anal region, atypical tail posture, frequent cleaning of the anus and problems with defecation. In severe cases, the anal sacs rupture. 

How should you deal with your cat's anal gland inflammation?

If an anal gland infection is suspected, the vet should be consulted as soon as possible. He will express the anal glands, possibly also do flushing if the glands are fistulating and possibly use an antibiotic to combat the inflammation and a painkiller. 

Expressing the anal glands is quite uncomfortable. This is sometimes done under anesthesia.

A collar prevents licking and can speed up the healing process, even if cats don't like it at all. 

How can you prevent anal gland inflammation in cats?

You should make sure that your cat tolerates its food well. If she often suffers from diarrhea or constipation, this could indicate a food intolerance. A balanced diet and high-quality cat food with selected, animal-friendly ingredients is very important for good digestion. This in turn ensures that the feces have the right consistency and that the anal glands empty.

Our favorite wet cat food is full of high-quality chicken meat, which provides your tiger with low-fat protein and is rich in vitamins A and B.