Ever wondered why dogs smell fishy at times? Chances are, it's coming from Rover's "derrière.' Perhaps your dog has an issue with his anal glands not emptying as they should. And if you get a fishy smell when your dog is acting scared, you are not imagining things. C.A. Donovan in the Journal of American Veterinary Association describes how fishy-smelling anal gland fluids emitted by an alarmed dog in a veterinary examination room can be perceived by other dogs which will want to avoid that particular room. Why can't dogs smell just like roses?