Most magnetorheological (MR) fluid dampers are designed as fixed-pole valve mode devices, where the MR fluid is forced to flow through a magnetically active annular gap. This forced flow generates the damping force, which can be continuously regulated by controlling the strength of the applied magnetic field. Because the size of the annular gap is usually very small relative to the radii of the annulus, the flow of the MR fluid through this annulus is usually approximated by the flow of fluid through two infinitely wide parallel plates. This approximation, which is widely used in designing and modeling of MR dampers, is satisfactory for many engineering purposes. However, the model does not represent accurately the physical processes and, therefore, expressions that correctly describe the physical behavior are highly desirable. In this paper, a mathematical model based on the flow of MR fluids through an annular gap is developed. Central to the model is the solution for the flow of any fluid model with a yield stress (of which MR fluid is an example) through the annular gap inside the damper. The physical parameters of a MR damper designed and fabricated at the University of Manchester are used to evaluate the performance of the damper and to compare with the corresponding predictions of the parallel plate model. Simulation results incorporating the effects of fluid compressibility are presented, and it is shown that this model can describe the major characteristics of such a device—nonlinear, asymmetric, and hysteretic behaviors—successfully.