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anal glands

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi there! I wondering about my 1 year old male neutered cat. He has this stench sometimes and it is disgusting! It happens probably once every 2 weeks. It gets on my sheets and on my blankets, clothing etc.

He licks the area and doesn't scoot. There doesn't appear to be any inflammation and when I took him into my vet the tech told me it was normal. That the expression of anal glands is normal and there didn't appear to be any inflammation.

My question: does anyone else have this situation? How could something so gross be normal? I have had cats before and have never encountered this before. I could understand if it was once every 5 years or something but this is way too frequent for my liking.

Any advice? Should I get a second opinion?
post #2 of 15
So the vet did express them? It usually happens naturally but it sounds like it isn't in this cats case. You might have to take him in more frequently to have them expressed. I don't really know anything else about it. Someone else should come along with better advice.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
the vet didn't actually see him - the tech said since the cat looked normal that it wouldn't be worth our money to have him seen. No expression of glands and no actual exam.
post #4 of 15
I think that may have been a bit of a hasty recommendation on the part of the vet tech, although to be fair to her there may not have been a problem at that precise moment, you know how these things go, your car stops making that strange noise as soon as a mechanic is present! - none of my boys smell (except of fabric conditioner when they have found a nice pile of fresh laundry to curl up in!) and having a cat with a stench is not normal.

If there aren't any other signs of ill health I would take him back to the vet when he's whiffy and see if they have any suggestions. I bet it is his anal glands if he leaves the smell on your blankets and clothes - nasty!
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
So I take it it's not a normal thing to have this smell ruin clothing and blankets? Otherwise, I think I'd hear a lot more of it.

this is him:
post #6 of 15
Cleo needs to have her's expressed a couple of time a year. I know when it's time when I see her scoot on the carpet. Yes, it is a vile smelling fluid that comes from the glands. Cleo is the first (and only) cat I've had that has ever had this problem, and I've had cats for nearly 50 years. My vet has offered to teach me how to do this, but I'd rather have Cleo associate the pain of having her anal glands expressed with the vet, and not me! Good luck to you and your kitty!
post #7 of 15
My kitties get stinky bums sometimes too, and even though their glands 'feel' fairly normal, it never fails that I will get a good bit out of them...I have learned that when cat can't seem to keep his bum smelling 'cleanish' then those glands need a little clean out, even if they don't feel impacted. Once they are clean, no more smell...well, once I wash that bum...but even after I know they have used the box a time or two, they don't smell icky. I have two girls that occasionally need a bit of anal gland cleaning. Cats shouldn't be stinky, nor should they leave stinkies when they leave, no, this is not a normal thing.

You can learn how to do this yourself by a groomer or veterinarian...and unless they are really full there is no reason you shouldn't always be able to do them yourself.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
should I bring him in to be cleaned up? I am not an anal gland guru.
post #9 of 15
No, definitely not normal. Young kittens sometimes get poo on their paws and tread it in other places when they are learning to use the litterbox, and cats that are sick or so old that they can no longer groom themselves sometimes smell not so great, but young healthy cats mostly have very little odour, and definitely not an overpoweringly unpleasant one that they leave behind them.

I would take him back to the vet, if he's not scooting and there's no obvious discomfort don't panic about it, just take him in when you can and get them to have another look.
post #10 of 15
Originally Posted by Orangey View Post
the vet didn't actually see him - the tech said since the cat looked normal that it wouldn't be worth our money to have him seen. No expression of glands and no actual exam.
Although the tech probably had good intentions...
I don't think that your vet would be pleased by the tech's comments.
I would want my vet to check my cat, to rule out a health issue.
post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
My husband took him to the vet because I was sick. Hubby didn't know much about the situation and didn't explain it was a CHRONIC problem and the tech must have thought that it was a one time deal. I am bringing him to another vet (based on this thread, thanks) because it doesn't appear to be normal and i'm not getting the answers I want.

I hope it's not indicative of an underlying health problem, though. :/
post #12 of 15
My boy Dexter is a healthy cat with scent sacs that tend to plug.
I think it's an excellent idea to get your cat checked so that you know exactly what the problem is.

You can use the search tool on your tool bar, on the main page of the Health forum, to pull up quite a few threads about scent sac problems.
Use ...
scent sacs
scent glands

Let us know what you find out at the vets.
If it is plugged sacs, I will give you some tips, that have helped reduce how often Dex needs to have his expressed.
post #13 of 15
Cleo has expressed his about twice since I had him. This is not abnormal some cats have that issue. Usually when cats pass firm stool the glands naturally express themselves. But for some cats these get blocked sometimes. The recommendation from my vet was to add more fiber to bulk up the stools so that they will express themselves.
It is such a horrid smell. I put him straight in the bath.
It is not usually something serious but it is uncomfortable for them.
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
thanks!! your cats look very tropical!
post #15 of 15
Originally Posted by Orangey View Post
I hope it's not indicative of an underlying health problem, though. :/
I doubt it, sometimes it happens because of loose stools which I am sure you would have noticed, but it does seem to be something that some cats are just prone to, in the vast majority of cases it is not a big deal and not at all serious
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