A dispenser is described for extruding a hot melt adhesive obtained by melting a rod of adhesive in a normally closed pressurized melting chamber. The rod is supplied from a remotely located spool through a flexible conduit to an inlet of the dispenser. A seal is placed at the inlet and is cooled by a flow of air so as to maintain the shape of the rod at the seal, prevent its deformation, and inhibit the leakage of melted adhesive back through the seal. A friction drive is used in the vicinity of the spool to push the rod into the melting chamber. A movable section is provided for the melting chamber to absorb expansion of the melted adhesive and a sensor is used to inhibit feeding of the rod when the chamber section expands and enable feeding when it is in a contracted position. A foamable adhesive rod is described wherein an unblown foaming agent is incorporated in the rod and activated in the melting chamber of the dispenser. Several embodiments are described.