Best High Fiber Dog Food for Anal Gland Problems

It’s a smelly situation we have on our hands. Anal glands can excrete a smelly (to say the least) liquid. In order for it to function properly, your dog’s diet needs to consist of high fiber. The fiber not only helps with digestion but also firms your pup’s stool. Firm stool helps push the anal gland when your pup does his business, and this helps push out the foul-smelling liquid. The anal gland is where dogs produce a unique scent, unique to each individual. Do you see dogs sniffing each other’s butts upon their first meeting? Well, this isn’t unlike us shaking hands. It’s their way of greeting each other.

The anal gland is usually emptied naturally when your dog defecates, but if it isn’t and becomes clogged or too full, it could become infected or in some more serious cases, it can even rupture. High fiber dog foods will help firm the stool and expel the liquid naturally.

7 Best High Fiber Dog Food for Anal Gland Problems

1 – Earthborn Holistic Coastal Catch Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

The fiber in dog food usually comes from vegetables and fruits, and sometimes grains. However, grain-free dog food is the new trend due to lots of pups experiencing stomach and skin sensitivities.

The Coastal Catch recipe from Earthborn Holistic is grain and gluten-free and comes in a resealable bag for easy access.

The first ingredient should always be a protein, an identifiable and clearly labeled animal source being the preferred choice. For this blend, they take herring and salmon, fish rich in omega fatty acids that help with skin and coat health.

All the natural vegetables and fruits including peas, blueberries, cranberries, apples, and carrots provide adequate fiber (for healthy stool) and antioxidants to boost your pup’s overall immune system.

Earthborn holistic looks out for the environment and other animals as well by packaging their dry dog food in BPA-free bags that are recyclable through their specific program helping to plant more trees.

Only the finest ingredients go into each recipe, with the recipe being produced in family-owned kitchens in the USA.

PROS:
  • With fish as the first ingredient, herring and salmon are rich in essential fats to help with skin and coat health.
  • A grain-free and gluten-free blend created in USA kitchens.
  • Wholesome veggies and fruits provide adequate amounts of antioxidants and fiber.
  • BPA-free packaging aids the environment and helps plant trees through Earthborn’s Reborn/Terracycle Program.
  • Only the best and trusted ingredients processed in certified plants are used.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Earthborn has had some recalls.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.

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2 – Taste of the Wild High Protein real Meat Recipe

For more fiber, you can opt for the ancient grain recipe, or just settle for the regular grain-free option. Either way, the roasted bison and venison as the first ingredients will surely be palatable for your dog. Not the usual meat he or she is used to, your dog will be begging for more!

The rich protein in meat aids in strong muscle development. Micronutrients such as the added vitamins and minerals will bolster the recipe and provide your dog with an overall nutrition boost.

The fruits and vegetables found in this recipe are wholesome superfoods providing antioxidants and sufficient fiber into your dog’s diet.

You won’t find harmful ingredients such as corn, wheat and artificial fillers and additives in Taste of the Wild recipes. 

Your dog’s skin and coat will also be cared for with the added fatty acid blend of omega 3’s and 6’s.

The family-owned company is located in the USA and produces all its food in compliance with scientifically advanced food safety regulations. Feel safe giving this high protein and high fiber blend to your dog.

PROS:
  • It contains a balanced blend of superfoods to provide antioxidants and fiber for your dog.
  • Introduce omega fatty acids to help support coat and skin health through this grain-free dog food.
  • Roasted bison and venison are delectable meats that will keep them coming back for more.
  • The high amount of protein will produce strong and lean muscles in your fur baby.
  • Nutrient-rich with added proprietary probiotics that help with digestion.
  • Made in the USA under strict food safety protocols.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • FDA warning that it may cause heart disease.

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3 – Purina Beyond Simply 9 Natural Limited Ingredient Adult Dry Dog Food

If you want grains in your dog food, you must choose whole grains. The whole barley in this recipe provides enough fiber to help with digestion and produce firm stool for easy anal gland secretion.

The limited ingredient recipes (only 9 in this case), aim to solely provide your dog with the nutrition he needs without over-complicating the formula. This allows for complete absorption and easy digestion. They leave out what is unnecessary and keep all that’s important. 

You can take your pick of lamb or chicken as the main ingredient and choose from 7 different sizes. 

You won’t find any potatoes, corn, wheat or soy included in the ingredients. Nutritionists are involved in every step that goes into creating this well-balanced blend. With everything produces in-house, Purina has full control over what exactly goes into your dog’s food.

Purina works hard on their limited ingredient diets and tries to make the most savory formula without sacrificing nutrition. 

PROS:
  • Give your dog wholesome ingredients, this means less processed foods with this recipe.
  • No potatoes, corn, wheat or soy can be found.
  • The limited diet formula only leaves in what’s necessary and what’s important.
  • Nutritionists are very involved in the manufacturing and development of Purina’s dog food.
  • Produced in their own facilities, Purina has full control over the quality of their food.
  • Ranch-raised lamb as the first ingredient and main source of protein.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • Some dogs may still be allergic to whole barley.

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4 – Hill’s Science Diet Dry Dog Food, Puppy, Chicken Meal & Barley

We always try to provide options for every breed of dog at every age on our list. The next one is meant for puppies. Puppies are in their developmental stage and what goes into their little bodies has a huge impact on the dogs they become.

The main purpose of this blend is to support the growth and immune system of puppies. DHA and omega fatty acids acquired from fish oil not only helps with skin and coat health but also supports cognitive development in young pups.

The high quality and large amounts of protein from the chicken aids in healthy and lean muscle growth and the minerals promote strong cartilage and bones. The whole grains also provide fiber to help with digestion and healthy stool.

Made with natural ingredients in USA facilities with global ingredients of high quality, there is a reason Hill’s Science Diet is the number 1 vet recommended brand.

The delicious recipe does not include any artificial additives or preservatives. All your puppy will get is an all-natural and savory taste. A healthy diet is important to a growing pup and Hill’s is a globally trusted brand.

PROS:
  • The formula provides puppies with the necessary nutrients for overall health.
  • DHA and essential fatty acids aid in skin and coat health as well as brain and eye development.
  • The protein supports healthy muscle growth.
  • Teeth and bones will become resilient with the minerals included.
  • Whole grains and fiber will help with digestion.
  • All made in the USA with quality ingredients.
  • #1 vet-recommended brand.
  • Delicious and healthy.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • Hill’s Science Diet has had recalls.

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5 – Rachael Ray Nutrish Dry Dog Food Chicken & Veggies

The best things about Rachael Ray’s dog food line are the delicious flavor and the wide variety of needs each recipe meets. In just this one chicken and veggies flavor you can find options suited for large, small, puppy or all dog breeds. You also get different sizes and the choice of chicken and brown rice.

Farm-raised chicken is the number 1 ingredient without the use of any by-product meals, fillers, wheat, or gluten. The added vitamins and minerals work together with the rest of the recipe to produce a wholesome diet for your dog.

The fiber from the veggies which include peas, carrots, and beet pulp support smooth digestion and healthy and firm stool. The prebiotics also helps with healthy flora in your dog’s digestive tract to avoid stomach issues.

Only natural ingredients inspired by real recipes concocted by Rachael are used. It’s a delicious and feel-good recipe that sounds good enough for even you to eat!

PROS:
  • No matter what size or age your dog is, if you like the recipe, you can find a suitable option.
  • Farm-raised chicken with adequate amounts of rice, fiber, vitamins and minerals and prebiotics work together to create a well-balanced meal.
  • Only natural ingredients are used.
  • The flavors are delicious and inspired by real recipes from Rachael Ray.
  • Nothing artificial or harmful is added.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • Glyphosate (a pesticide) could be included. It was a lawsuit filed in 2018.
  • It contains some ingredients that aren’t the best for your fur baby.

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6 – Orijen High Protein, Grain-Free, Premium Animal Ingredient Dry Dog Food

You can choose from the original flavor, the Regional Red (which is red-meat focused), or Six Fish (made with fish as the main protein).

Orijen believes that our dogs have a high need for quality protein to satisfy their biological needs, and they aim to do that with 85% of animal ingredients in each recipe. 

Using a blend of fresh and raw meat with necessary fruits and veggies for a source of fiber, each recipe is biologically appropriate for dogs. Not only does your pup get red meat, but there is also a mix of cartilage, organs, and bone to give them as close to a natural diet as they can get.

All the ingredients are obtained from trusted sources and delivered to Orijen kitchens in their fresh and natural form.

All dog food is made in their kitchen in Kentucky, no part of the manufacturing process is outsourced. Orijen is proud to be involved in every step to ensure your dog only gets the best and safest food. 

PROS:
  • Three different flavors to choose from, depending on your dog’s focus.
  • Only ingredients sourced from trusted sources are included.
  • Everything is made in their state-of-the-art kitchens in Kentucky and nothing is outsourced.
  • 85% quality animal ingredients make up the recipe, with the rest being other vital and wholesome veggies and fruits and micronutrients.
  • Biologically appropriate, not only meat but cartilage and bone of the animal is utilized as well.
  • No plant proteins or artificial additives are found. Orjen only uses ingredients your dog has evolved to eat.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • It is slightly pricey.
  • May have an unpleasant odor.

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7 – Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet, Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food

The grain-free line from Blue Buffalo has four different flavors with potatoes and one pure lamb. Blue Buffalo uses real animal protein as the first ingredient and the potatoes, peas, and pumpkin provide sufficient fiber to aid in digestion.

The basics line only contains necessary ingredients for a well-balanced diet, therefore reducing the risk of allergies. 

What’s extra about Blue Buffalo is they offer LifeSource bits. These are added ingredients with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals to round-out the recipe.

Poultry and grain, as well as by-product meals, corn, wheat, and soy, are known to cause more allergies and sensitivities in dogs. You won’t find these ingredients or artificial preservatives and flavors in this blend.

The wholesome ingredients used are specifically engineered to fit your dog’s needs. There are also added sources of DHA to support cognitive development and added levels of glucosamine and chondroitin to help with joint issues in larger dogs.

PROS:
  • Get the best ingredients for your dog with this basics recipe that only includes necessary nutrition.
  • Animal sources of protein are the first ingredient in each recipe.
  • The LifeSource bits balance and round-out the recipe.
  • All-natural, nothing irritating or artificial is included.
  • Added DHA levels, veggies for protein and amounts of glucosamine and chondroitin.
  • Basic recipes (limited ingredients) reduce the risk of sensitivities and allergies.
  • There are so many flavor choices you are bound to find one your dog loves.

CONS:
  • When buying dog food, it is always possible it may not sit well with your dog.
  • Your dog may not like the flavor.
  • Was hit with a lawsuit claiming to have high levels of lead in their food in 2018. 

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Our Top Pick: Orijen High Protein, Grain-Free, Premium Animal Ingredient Dry Dog Food

There is no perfect dog food out there, and manufacturers try their best. Most dog food lines have had recalls so you can only do your best and try to find one that has most of what your dog needs.

Orijen uses 85% animal ingredients in their recipe, so for the most part, it’s natural. Only ingredients they trust and are sourced from a reliable supplier are used and all made in their Kentucky kitchen. No process in the development and manufacturing of the food is outsourced. Orijen has full control over what goes on in their facilities.

They make sure they throw in all the needed ingredients to provide your dog with a biologically appropriate and balanced meal. Nothing our dogs aren’t evolved to eat is used. You only get the freshest ingredients in the best ratios supported by fresh fruits and veggies.

What to Look for When Buying High Fiber Dog Food for Anal Gland Problems?

High fiber dog food aids in healthy digestion, firming up your dog’s stool to help the expression of the anal gland. There are two types of fiber: Soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber helps deep within your dog’s gut and digestive tract. Insoluble fiber helps bowel movement. If you see your dog having soft stool or diarrhea but he’s somewhat healthy, your vet will suggest switching to high fiber dog foods. Pumpkin is a good source of natural fiber in these dog foods. Sometimes fiber supplements can also be added to help firm up the stool. Other than fiber, what else should we look for in high fiber dog food?

Healthy Sources of Fiber

You don’t want anything synthetic, so it’s important to be able to identify what constitutes healthy sources of fiber. Vegetables and grains that are a good source of fiber are blueberries, apples, pumpkin, spinach, beet pulp, carrots, potatoes, flaxseed, psyllium husk, dried peas and beans, oats and barley. Remember that if you include grain in your dog’s diet, make sure it’s whole grain.

Insoluble: Soluble fiber cannot be digested, instead they work to firm up your pup’s poop for easier passage through the intestines.

Soluble: Soluble fiber increases the number of healthy bacteria in your fur baby’s digestive tract to help with digestion.

Ingredients

Whole ingredients are important. Aside from that, you should always choose recipes with animal-sourced protein as the first ingredient. The first labeled ingredient on the list is the main ingredient. Perhaps avoid grains if your dog has a sensitive tummy or sensitive skin. Also, opt for natural and/or organic ingredients if you can. The less processing that went into the food the better.

Nothing Artificial

Artificial preservatives, flavor, and coloring are among the worst things your dog can ingest. These substances are mostly for your benefit, as your dog won’t notice if the food is bright pink or purple even. If made with high-quality ingredients, your dog’s food won’t need any unnatural enhancers. Not only are these substances unnecessary, but they can have a harmful impact on your dog.

Avoid These Ingredients

Avoid any unidentified ingredients or poorly labeled once with unclear sources. Meals and by-products aren’t as good as the real thing, but they aren’t inherently bad. If meals and by-products are a part of your dog’s diet, make sure they are from a specific animal. For example, chicken meal or pork byproducts are ok, but not poultry by-products or meat meal. Anything that leaves you questioning what kind of meat it is is not a good sign.

Health Enhancing Nutrients

Extra added benefits such as wholesome fruits, veggies, vitamins, and minerals are important. Antioxidants help boost overall health and the immune system and can be indispensable to a pup’s diet. Omega fatty acids help support skin and coat health and also reduces inflammation. 

Where is It Manufactured?

Unfortunately, where a brand of dog food is made does impact the quality. Countries such as the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and certain parts of Europe are countries with stringent food-safety standards. Therefore, food manufactured and sourced within these countries will pose less of a risk to your fur baby.

Probiotics and Prebiotics

Both are essential when it comes to digestion. They coat your pup’s intestines with healthy bacteria that will leave your dog feeling good after every meal, and able to poop smoothly. When added to a high fiber dog food, probiotics and prebiotics only help strengthen the effect.

Benefits of a High Fiber Diet for Your Dog

Other than healthy digestion, a high fiber diet as an array of other benefits. 

  • Obesity – Healthy bowel movements and limited calories in a high fiber diet can decrease weight gain. Fiber is heavier and satiates your dog faster than calories. A high fiber diet will decrease his calorie intake.
  • Irregular Intestinal Functions – If your dog’s poop rarely holds shape or he often has diarrhea, these symptoms are considered irregular bowel movements and a high fiber diet can surely put this to bed.
  • Anal Gland Issues – The main purpose of this article is to tackle anal gland issues. Located outside their anus, these glands secrete your dog’s unique scent. They need to be expressed regularly (which usually happens when your dog goes doo doo), but if they aren’t it could lead to infection and a lot of pain. Do you see your dog scooting his butt on the floor? It may be time for some expelling.
  • Diabetes – Fiber, in humans as well can help regulate blood sugar levels. 

When Do My Dog’s Anal Glands Need to Be Expressed?

A healthy pup should be able to take care of this problem when he or she poops. However, there are some factors that could lead to difficulty with expression, and one such example is anal glands located too deep within the rectum.

Although you can secrete his or her anal glands yourself (if they cannot do so themselves), it’s still advised to seek professional help. You may not know how much pressure to use and damage the anal gland and causing more problems for your pup. This is only advised if your dog is unable to empty his anal glands naturally.

If anal gland emptying is done too regularly, the gland muscles will weaken and damage the glands and prevent them from ever being emptied naturally. Leave them be if you can, but if you see him or her in pain or scooting across the floor, then it’s time to take action. When in doubt, a trip to your trusted vet will solve any problem.

Conclusion

There are actually alternative ways to add fiber to your dog’s diet. If you found a dog food he loves and are hesitant to switch it out, try supplements. There are food toppers you can purchase from most brands that can add a bit of fiber. If you want to take a more natural approach, you can add some human ingredients to their food. Pumpkin, green beans, carrots, peas, spinach, and other high fiber veggies and fruits could round out his meals. Since these are unprocessed human foods, don’t over-do it at first. Introduce them in smaller amounts and see how your dog reacts. Hopefully, with a high fiber diet, you will see an improvement in your dog’s anal glands.

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