Can Dog Groomers Legally Express Anal Glands?

We had the opportunity to speak with the Canadian Professional Pet Stylists (CPPS – www.canpropetstylists.ca) last month about the legality of dog groomers expressing anal glands. The CPPS has researched this issue with all provincial veterinary regulatory bodies in an effort to help groomers avoid contravening veterinary regulations.

To view a copy of the CPPS summary of each province’s stance on whether groomers can legally express anal glands, click here.

If you’ve looked at the summary, it’s clear that there are a range of opinions on this procedure. Despite the inconsistencies across Canada, if the veterinary regulatory body for your province prohibits groomers from providing this service, we’d recommend you stop providing the service and re-direct your clients to their vet. If you’re still on the fence about it though, please keep reading for another good reason why you’d want to adhere to the regulations.

What About Insurance?

PROfur policies are designed to cover dog groomers who express glands. However, professional liability insurance policies do not cover injuries that happen as a result of violating regulations. In other words, if you express anal glands in violation of your provincial veterinary regulations, and a dog is injured, you will not have any insurance coverage to protect you – any expenses, legal fees and judgements against you will not be covered. If you are legally expressing glands, then a PROfur insurance policy will still cover you.

It goes without saying, but we’ll say it anyway because, well, we’re insurance brokers and we’re a fairly cautious bunch! If you operate in a province where expressing glands is legal and you intend to offer this service to customers, ensure that you have proper training on how to perform the procedure and recognizing potential problems (like impacted, inflamed, infected glands) so you know when to refer your client to their vet and hopefully avoid the risk of injuring the dog and possible legal action.

Thanks go out to the CPPS for making this information available to their members and the rest of the grooming industry.

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