Home Remedies for Dog Scooting: How to Help Itchy Butts

Written by Dr. James Bascharon

Dog scooting can be a hilarious but concerning sight for pet owners. If your furry friend has been dragging their hindquarters across the floor more often than you'd like, it's time to explore some home remedies to address this uncomfortable behavior.

Top Common Reasons Dogs Scoot

Before we dive into the home remedies, it's crucial to understand why dogs scoot in the first place. Scooting is often signals an underlying issueUnderstanding these common reasons can help you address the root cause of your dog's scooting. Here are the most common reasons why dogs scoot:

Anal Gland Problems

Anal gland problems are the most frequent cause of scooting in dogs. These small sacs, known as anal glands or anal sacs, are situated on either side of your dog's anus. They contain a foul-smelling fluid that is typically expressed during bowel movements. However, when these sacs become impacted or infected, they can cause significant discomfort for your dog. The irritation prompts your dog to scoot in an attempt to relieve the discomfort. Anal gland problems can be quite uncomfortable and need prompt attention.


Allergies, whether they are related to food or environmental factors, can lead to itching and irritation around your dog's anal area. This persistent itching can drive your dog to scoot as they try to alleviate the discomfort. Identifying and addressing the specific allergen triggering these symptoms is crucial to providing your dog with relief.

Parasites and Gastrointestinal Issues

Intestinal parasites, such as tapeworms, can cause itching and irritation in the anal area. This itching can be severe and lead to scooting. Additionally, gastrointestinal problems like constipation, diarrhea, or other digestive issues can result in scooting behavior.

Skin Infections

Bacterial or yeast infections in the skin surrounding the anus can cause intense itching and discomfort. Dogs may scoot in an attempt to find relief from this persistent irritation. Proper diagnosis and treatment of these skin infections are essential to resolve the issue and stop the scooting behavior.


A dog's diet plays a significant role in their overall health, including the health of their gastrointestinal system. An improper diet can lead to issues like soft stools or diarrhea. These bowel problems may necessitate more frequent anal gland expression, which, over time, can contribute to scooting. Ensuring your dog's diet is well-balanced and suitable for their specific needs is an important step in preventing scooting caused by dietary issues.

Best Home Remedies For Dog Scooting

Now that we've covered the common reasons behind scooting, let's explore some effective home remedies to help your dog stop this behavior.

Warm Compress With Water

One of the first steps you can take to provide relief to your scooting dog is a warm water compress. This can help soothe irritation and reduce discomfort in the anal area. To do this, follow these steps:

  • Boil some water and let it cool to a warm but comfortable temperature.

  • Soak a clean cloth or gauze in the warm water and wring out the excess.

  • Gently apply the warm compress to your dog's anal area for a few minutes.

  • Repeat this process a few times a day to help alleviate discomfort.

Anal Gland Expression

If your dog's scooting is primarily due to anal gland problems, you can learn how to express their anal glands at home. However, it's essential to be cautious and gentle when doing this. Here's how to do it:

  • Wear disposable gloves and have some lubricant, like petroleum jelly, on hand.

  • Have your dog stand or lie down on their side.

  • Gently insert your gloved and lubricated finger into your dog's anus.

  • Locate the anal glands, which feel like small, pea-sized sacs on either side of the anus.

  • Gently apply pressure to these sacs to express the fluid inside.

  • Be sure to point the fluid away from you and dispose of it properly.

Regular Grooming

Regular grooming and hygiene practices can go a long way in preventing scooting. Keep the anal area clean and free from debris. Trim the fur around the anus to reduce the likelihood of fecal matter becoming trapped.

Dietary Adjustments

Ensure your dog's diet is well-balanced and free from common allergens. We'll touch base on foods that help anal gland health in the next section. High-fiber diets can also help regulate your dog's bowel movements, resulting in firmer stools. Firm stools are less likely to trigger scooting.

Probiotics and Prebiotics

Probiotics and prebiotics can support a healthy gut microbiome and aid in digestion. Consider adding a high-quality probiotic supplement to your dog's diet. Additionally, it's essential to examine their diet for potential allergens. If you suspect food allergies are contributing to scooting, consult with your veterinarian about an elimination diet or allergy testing.

Increase Water Intake

Proper hydration is crucial for maintaining overall health and promoting regular bowel movements. Make sure your dog has access to fresh, clean water at all times. You can also add a little water to their kibble or offer ice cubes as a refreshing treat to encourage more fluid intake.

Foods to Help Dog Anal Glands


Pumpkin is often recommended as a home remedy for dog scooting due to its fiber content. The soluble fiber in pumpkin can help regulate bowel movements and firm up stools. To incorporate pumpkin in your dog's diet, add a spoonful of canned or pureed pumpkin to your dog's meals. Start with a small amount and gradually increase if needed. Monitor your dog's stool consistency and adjust the pumpkin accordingly.

Fiber-Rich Foods

Along with pumpkin, sweet potatoes (cooked or mashed),  brown rice, or green bean (steamed or boiled) can help regulate your dog's bowel movements, resulting in firmer stools. Firm stools are less likely to trigger scooting. Learn what healthy dog stool should look like.

Lean Protein

High-quality, lean protein sources like chicken and turkey can contribute to firm stools.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Fish oil supplements or fatty fish like salmon can help reduce inflammation and promote skin and coat health.

When Deworming Doesn't Solve The Scooting Issue

Deworming is essential for eliminating parasites as a potential cause of scooting in dogs. However, if your dog continues to scoot even after deworming, it's crucial to consider other factors.

One common possibility is inflamed or impacted anal glands, unrelated to parasites, which may require veterinary attention. Additionally, some dogs may experience temporary post-worming itchiness around the anus as dead worms exit their body, leading to continued scooting. This discomfort typically subsides over time as the remnants of parasites are eliminated naturally.

Monitor your dog closely, and if scooting persists or discomfort persists, consult your veterinarian for a thorough evaluation and guidance.

Can I Use Vaseline On A Dog’s Bottom?

While some pet owners use petroleum jelly (Vaseline) to soothe irritation around their dog's anus, it's crucial to exercise caution. Ensure that the Vaseline you use is free from additives or fragrances. Apply a thin layer sparingly and monitor your dog for any adverse reactions. If you notice any redness, swelling, or increased scooting after applying Vaseline, discontinue use and consult your veterinarian.

When to Consult Your Vet

While home remedies can be effective for mild cases of scooting, there are situations where you should seek veterinary assistance. In these situations, it's crucial to consult with your veterinarian promptly. They can perform a thorough examination, including checking for underlying health conditions, conducting diagnostic tests, and recommending appropriate treatments. Situations to consult your vet include:
  • If your dog's scooting is persistent and doesn't improve with home remedies.

  • If your dog appears to be in severe pain, discomfort, or distress while scooting.

  • If you notice blood in your dog's stool or around the anal area.

  • If you notice any changes in your dog's behavior, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or changes in bowel habits.

  • If your dog's scooting is accompanied by signs of infection, such as pus or foul odor in the anal area.

  • Be sure to point the fluid away from you and dispose of it properly.

The Role of Glandex Products in Anal Gland Health

At Vetnique, we believe in providing holistic solutions for pet health, including maintaining optimal anal gland function. Our Glandex products are formulated to support dogs with anal gland issues, ensuring they find relief from discomfort and itchiness.

Glandex Soft Chews

Our Glandex Soft Chews are vet-recommended and specifically designed to promote healthy anal gland function. Glandex's patented formula contains a unique fiber blend, omega fatty acids, probiotics, and digestive enzymes to support digestion, regular bowel movements, seasonal allergies, and enhance the immune response.

Glandex Powder

For dogs who prefer a powder supplement, our Glandex Powder offers the same potent benefits as our soft chews. It can be easily mixed with your dog's food, making it convenient and hassle-free.

Glandex Wipes

Glandex Wipes are specifically designed to assist in cleaning the anal region after anal gland expression as well as to help support healthy anal glands. They contain DeoPlex® natural enzymatic deodorizers that don’t mask, but eliminate bad odors.

Glandex Topical Spray

Our Glandex Topical Spray offers targeted relief for your dog's itchy butt. With its medicated formula containing hydrocortisone and lidocaine, it helps soothe inflammation and provide immediate comfort.

A Complete Approach to Your Dog's Itchy Butt

If your dog is scooting, it's essential to address the underlying causes and provide them with relief. By understanding the common reasons for scooting and implementing the home remedies discussed in this article, you can help your furry companion lead a more comfortable and happy life. Whether you choose natural methods like anal gland expression or opt for supplements like Glandex, your dog's well-being is the ultimate goal.

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