Dog Expressing Glands on Couch: Why and How to Stop

Do you have a dog that leaves an unpleasant smell on your couch? Dog glands are often the culprit of this smell, and it can be difficult to keep them from expressing on your furniture. In this article, we’ll explain why dogs express their glands, how you can keep them from doing so on your couch, and how to clean any odors that have already occurred.

A dog that has never had anal gland problems before leaving a gland smell on your couch may be a sign of health problems (such as an impaction or infection). If you suspect any problems with your dog, consult your veterinarian.

Dog Expressing Glands on Couch

Why Dogs Express Glands?

Dogs express their glands for many reasons, the most common being a sign of territoriality. Dog glands are located near their anus (in the anal sac), and when they rub it on furniture or other objects, it marks them as “theirs”. This is why many dogs express their glands when they enter a new space or smell something unfamiliar.

Anal gland fluid also contain pheromones, which are important for communication between dogs and other animals. Dogs use these pheromones to communicate with each other in various ways, such as marking territory, announcing danger, and even calming down an anxious dog.

How to Keep a Dog From Expressing Glands On the Couch

The best way to keep your dog from expressing their glands on the couch is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Make sure you are watching your dog’s behavior and try to redirect them when they show signs of wanting to express their glands. For example, if you see your dog sniffing around the couch, give them a toy or a treat to distract them from expressing their glands.

Make the Sofa a “No Go Zone”

Create a “no go zone” around the couch by using positive reinforcement to train your dog. For example, when you see them approaching the couch, give them a treat or toy and praise them for not going near it. Eventually, they will learn that being away from the couch is more rewarding than trying to express their glands on it.

How to Clean the Dog Gland Smell off the Couch

Clean Anal Gland Smell

If your dog has already expressed their glands on the couch, you’ll need to clean it up immediately. The best way to do this is with an enzyme-based cleaner and water. This type of cleaner will break down the proteins in the glands, eliminating any odors or stains.

Make sure to test the cleaner on a small area of the couch first and always follow the instructions on the packaging. After cleaning, you may want to invest in a pet-safe fabric protector to keep your furniture protected from future accidents.

You can also use deterrents such as bitter apple spray, which is sprayed onto furniture and objects that your dog may be tempted to mark. Dog owners have found success in using these sprays as they create an unpleasant taste for the dog and discourage them from expressing their glands.

Biological Washing Powder

Biological washing powder has also been known to help with the odor of dog glands. Put some biological washing powder on the couch and leave it for about 15 minutes before vacuuming it off. This will help to reduce any odors.

Steam Cleaning

Steam cleaning your couch is another option that can help to remove any lingering odors. The steam will penetrate deep into the fabric of the couch and help to break down any proteins from the glands.

Hydrogen Peroxide

If all else fails, you can use hydrogen peroxide to try and remove the smell. Be sure to dilute it with water, as it can cause damage to your furniture. Spray the mixture onto the affected area and let it sit for a few minutes before wiping off with a damp cloth.

Baking Soda

Baking soda can also be used to help remove the smell of glands. Sprinkle some baking soda over the affected area and leave it there for a few hours. After that, vacuum up the baking soda and then mop with a mild detergent to get rid of any remaining odors.

Specialized Pet Odor Eliminator

Finally, there are also specialized pet odor eliminators available that can help to get rid of the smell of glands on your furniture. Follow the instructions on the packaging and make sure to test a small area of the couch first.


You can use a carpet cleaning company if you don’t want to do the work yourself, or if the smell isn’t quite coming out. They will be able to get rid of any lingering odors and make sure that your couch is clean and smelling fresh.


Until you teach your dog not to get on the couch, try furniture covers to take the anal gland damage.

Anal gland smell can be an annoying problem when it comes to keeping furniture smelling fresh. However, by understanding why dogs express their glands and how you can prevent it from happening, you can keep your furniture clean and odor-free. Additionally, if your dog has already expressed their glands on the couch, there are simple methods of cleaning that can help to get rid of any foul odors.