A Seed of Pain for Rufus

Rufus is a beautiful 3 year old Beagle Maltese cross. He presented to our Trinity Gardens hospital one evening with a history of licking at his bottom. The owners then noticed a swelling on the side of his bottom. They quickly brought him in to be examined.

On examination, Rufus was well except for the previously noted swelling. This swelling was in the region of his anal sacs (small sacs on the inside of the anus that hold scent material). There was a small painful opening in the region of his right anal sac. On exploration of the wound a large grass seed was removed! Rufus was then started on anti-inflammatories and antibiotics. He also had to wear an Elizabethan collar (“buster collar”) to prevent him from licking and contaminating the wound.

Grass seeds can be responsible for particular nasty abscesses and wounds. The seeds can get caught in the fur (usually in-between the toes) and slowly migrate into the skin. Once under the skin they can cause local abscesses or can track further along in-between the muscles and skin. Grass seeds can also lodge themselves in the ears, eyes, vulva, or in the case of Rufus, in through the anus.

Rufus’ owners had this to say:

“We first noticed that our dog Rufus had a problem when he began continuously licking himself in one area. When we took a closer look, one patch on his skin was red and swollen. We took him to Adelaide Animal Hospitals and it turned out he had a grass seed stuck under his skin. Dr Stephanie took great care of Rufus, removing the grass seed and talking us through the antibiotics we would need to give him when we got home. Although he had to wear a cone around his head for a couple of days, he is back to his normal self playing around with Abby the cat and his best friend Ryan.”

Grass seeds can be found at any time of year, so it is important for dog’s coat to be thoroughly checked after being outside. Unfortunately even the most thorough search can’t always detect grass seeds. So if you do notice any swellings, pain or excessive licking be sure to take your pet to the veterinarian for a check up.

It’s great to see that after his course of medication, and time with his buster collar, Rufus is back to his happy self and continues to enjoy being out and about.

grass seed
anal gland

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