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jckaw7's picture
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This practice is illegal in so many countries; why is it still legal and practiced in the USA?

Is the danger from the anesthesia, weeks of stitches, months of taping, and all the discomfort that goes with this worth it? What is the purpose of ear cropping? I've heard about possible medical benefits; can someone point me to the scientific evidence?

Also, don't dogs communicate with their ears? Are they still able to move them freely, or does ear cropping take from them a form of their communication?

Skeptical,

AlphaAdmin's picture
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These are good questions jckaw7. Let me start with the medical stuff.

The most dangerous things about the ear cropping process are the anesthesia and risk of infection. The stitches should come out in about a week and wrapping and taping times depend somewhat on the dog, much on the skill of the surgeon, and mostly on the style (height) of the crop. The danger is small and Dobermans go through the procedure extremely well. The worst part for them is having their ears wrapped, this came be mitigated by training them to accept the wrappings and by keeping clean fresh ones on.

If you don’t crop the ears, you’re not out of ear-danger though. I’ve dealt with many ear croppings and a few ear infections – the infections are much worse for the doge and are more dangerous and difficult to treat. Un-cropped Doberman ears are prone to infection and need to be clean regularly and meticulously.

Some refer to not-cropping as leaving the ears natural. This is not so. Remember, the Doberman is born with long floppy hound dog ears. These are man-made. The posturing you refer to - the way dogs communicate - is severely limited by these long heavy ears. The cropping procedure in fact returns natural movement to the ears by removing the man-made useless thin membrane. The actual movable ear – the part that you see in other dogs like the GSD or wolf – is what’s left.

Many countries have banned ear cropping because many people believe it’s a cruel and unnecessary procedure. True, it is mostly cosmetic. As I’ve said, I’ve handled many Dobermans through the process and I would have to disagree with the notion that it’s cruel. I agree that it’s no fun – but neither is getting wisdom teeth removed or eye surgery, both procedure that correct something WE are born with and have many benefits similar to the ear crop.

A Doberman with cropped ear is happier, able to posture more evidently, and almost always free of ear infection his whole life. If I were a Doberman, I’d want mine cropped for sure!

I believe you’d go further for animal rights in a thousand other ways before ear cropping needs attention, and if the people giving it attention have any idea what it actually is of have actually handled a dog through the process, I doubt he would have concerns.

Most of the opposition to ear cropping is from people who have no idea.

jckaw7's picture
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Well-expressed defense, horseatingweeds. Thorough and not puffed.

Anyone else here able to stand with horseatingweeds on this?

Grendelspop's picture
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Well said Horse, when I got my first Dobe I also questioned the need to crop, a few Doberman and Boxer's later I don't think twice. They are happier and healthier and never even seem to know it happened. Hungry first and ready to play second.

niloufar's picture
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It was nicely put horseatingweeds, I have never looked at it from the angle you explained but i still think it is cruel and unnecessary to put a Little puppy through all that pain and discomfort. My doberman has both long ears and tail and his ears are very expressive. Having a long tail makes his body language easier to read. I always think that a dog's ears and tail is his tool for communicating,just like our tongues, how would we like it if someone cut our tongues off when we were young?

Buzz's mum

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Well.... Our tongs are very useful and necessary, just like a Doberman's tong, but unlike his tail and ears.

It's true, the tail and ears are very expressive. In particular the ears. Now remember, the Doberman ears are man made. Those long floppy things were bred into hounds long ago. They limit the dog's ability to express. The ear crop returns ability to the Doberman; it does not remove it.

Tail docking does, however, but not much. Some people like their dog having that tail. Personally, I miss them after we get them chopped of, but in the long term for a working dog it is much better, for the dog.

I've handles many Doberman's through the cropping process and many more through the tail doc. The tail doc can be a real pain for me, but for the puppies it really isn't. Mother dog can tell when there is something wrong with their puppies and they never have a problem with finding their puppies tailless. They are annoyed at not seeing them for the hour or so, but if they were experiencing real pain I think they would show it in some way. I've dealt with sick and inured puppies and they always have problems, especially feeding. Docked puppies don't. The mother knows if a puppy is sick too, and stops cleaning it. Mothers don't stop cleaning docked puppies. Actually - their cleaning is what gives me the problem watching their stitches.

The cropping process is nothing. If you don't like the actual copping procedure, you should never allow you dog to go under anesthesia for anything; teeth cleaning or especially altering. The tough part about the cropping procedure is the training and wrapping - taping. It can be sore and itchy - like an ear infection. I've dealt with those too. Ear infections are often worse. The key is to get the puppy trained quick so he know to accept the wrappings. It's no worse than dog cloths.

So, I think your question would be better put, if I had a long tail and big floppy genetically produced unnatural ears, would I myself like to have a procedure similar to the Doberman?

Well, I might like having the tail if my job was to gather shot birds, tell my handler where I am in a field, or just act goofy around the house. However, if part of my job was to protect my owner, I'd rather have that handle cut short.

I'd for sure want the ears trimmed. I get itchy just looking at hound ears. Dobermans love how their cropped ears work. They make good use of the natural ability the crop returns to them. Also, in my personal opinion, they look awesome. And this is why most people get the procedure - it looks great. I'd be against it if it wasn't such a simple procedure, and if it didn't have so many good results.

There is the problem of irresponsible owners, or just owners too timid to get the training and taping done properly. This is just one of the purposes of this site though - teaching people how to handle the Doberman.

FIFISMOM's picture
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Over the past 20 years, we have been lucky enough to have been"owned" by 3 dobies, all of which have been "natural" - ears and tails intact.
We have NEVER had any ear infections.  Another wonderful part of having "natural" dobies is that about half the people who see them do not realize that they are dobies - and by the time they ask if the dog is part doberman they have already had their faces washed by the dog - so it's too late to be afraid.  We have found that leaving them the way they were born has allowed our dogs to be true ambassadors of the breed.

AlphaAdmin's picture
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This is very true FIFISMOM,

About half of the puppies we have placed kept their big ears. Those families expressed the same experience.

Most people are afraid of the cropped ear Doberman. Drayko, our male, is usually the one out visiting strangers. It's hard to stay afraid of him though. He's trained to politely sit next to people as a greeting. He also has a fondness for stuffed animals so will carry one around all day. It's tough being to afraid of a dog carefully caring a stuffed animal.

I've trained him not to lick people though. He knows to keep his distance. He's also trained to keep eye contact. This freaks some people out. They remember the idea that looking an animal in the eye is a challenge. I just remind him he's looking for his next command.

SweetSoma79's picture
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I just wanted to add that I have had my Bonnie for almost 3 months now, and her ears are natural, and I have been fighting ear mites since I got her. They will not go away, I have tried everything.....Does anyone have any suggestions of things to try??? Thanks :)    ???

FIFISMOM's picture
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If your dog has ear mites then you need to be in touch w/ your vet - there are treatments for mites.

AlphaAdmin's picture
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Talking to the vet would be a good idea, but i imagine you already have. Make sure he knows you're having trouble getting rid of them. Are you cleaning way down in there?

The vet should have something stronger or perhaps there is another problem. Cleaning ear mite is no fun for anyone... Three months should have been long enough to fix the problem. Although, i think I remember you saying you tried using herbal hippy stuff. How long have you been using the nasty treatment? How often do you clean them each day?

We've never had ear mites in our Dobermans, but some of the stray cats that my wife has brought home had them. She would clean their ears twice each day and I think it only took a couple weeks to get rid of them.

CHUCKY44's picture
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I have had dobies for twenty + years..I tried raising two without cropping. Actually a customer wanted two without the ears cropped but backed out (long story) but anyway they were approaching 5 mo of age. Nothing but problems, I had to weekly inspect and medicate ears, one hematoma after another! The vet ended up having to cut their ears anyway to stop the problems. I will never intentially have another doby without ears being cropped. Vet bills as well as all the trauma the dogs went thru...To me it is inhumane for the dogs not to have their ears cut.

one mans opinion

AlphaAdmin's picture
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I head you there Chucky, uncropped Doberman puppies together are a disaster waiting to happen. Doberman puppies don't seem to understand getting hurt, so they bite and pull on each other and don't mind getting bitten and pulled.

I hope you got a nonrefundable deposit on the puppies to help with the vet bills.... ;)

Soleil's picture
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This is my first dobie (I assure you it will not be my last ;)) and she is a half and half.  Her ears were left uncropped but the tail was docked.  I am sooo happy she has a nub and not a tail for countless selfish reasons such as she cannot break things with happy tail wags, I spared myself the bruises of that long hound tail whip, I can bring her into dog friendly stores and don't have worry about her knocking things off the shelf and she can still be happy and give nub wagging greetings to all those who want to admire how pretty she is.    Now for the unselfish reasons.  I have a golden who thinks tails are like leashes... he walk another dog by holding a tail in his mouth.. (gentle of course) She likes play rough I can only guess that during her puppy rough housing she would have gotten it hurt.. it can't be used against her it it is not there.  I see how she thinks tails are fun to chase and hunt.. if she had her own I think I would have to deal with trying to break her of the habit of constantly chasing her tail.. She is spared all those "oopppss i accidentally stepped on your dogs tail moments"
Now for the ears.  I think she is cute and expressive with her floppy ears.  So far... No ear infections... no mites.. no problems.  My golden has issues with ear infections but she has no issues with it. We clean ears regularly in my house and it is not a big deal.    I like the look of both both cropped and uncropped.  To be honest I did not think I would be able to do the taping and care that went with cropped ears ( I think i was afraid I would mess it up and she would have floppy ears anyway thereby making her go though unnecessary surgery.) She is often mistaken for a chocolate lab or lab mix ( she is red)  and sometimes I enjoy how surprised people are when i tell them no she 100% doberman.  (these people would never had approached me if her ears were done)  She definitely has swayed a few peoples opinions on dobermans being vicious... on the flip side on my crabby days .... sometimes I wish her ears were done and then they would stay away and not want to approach my doberman...(I still have no idea how people could think she was a lab... then look at me like i am evil and ask me what happened to my labs tail  >:( )I don't think they look as regal with floppy ears but it completely matches my goofy girl.  So I guess I am neutral on the subject. 

dobenhorseluvr's picture
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I have just had my second dobe's ears cropped, and I don't feel as it should be considered cruel.  How about women having little boys, isn't that cruel to have them circumcised.  But it needs to be done due to infections and that is a worse area than a dobermans ears, don't You think?

aprilwands's picture
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PLEASE HELP!!!  I am in desperate need of a good reference for an ear-cropping vet in Pennsylvania.  I live in the Harrisburg area and want to take my baby to the best person possible for the procedure to decrease the chances of something bad happening to her during the surgery, etc.  I am running out of time (she'll be 11 weeks old on Saturday, so we need to move soon!)...Is there anyone that you guys (and ladies...) would recommend?  I would GREATLY appreciate your help and expertise.  I am willing to travel some distance, of course, but if there is someone close that you have in mind, that would vbe great. 

April

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Hi Aprilwands,

It can be tough getting a reference. The best thing is usually to call your local veterinarians and find out if they crop. If they do then visit and view any pictures of their past work. Have you asked the breeder? A good breeder will know all the good vets in the area.

Also, this is why I always encourage people to find a vet, and a vet who does good cropped ears - before they bring home the puppy.  ;)

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Hello, Here is a list of a few recomended ear cropping vets. Sorry so short but it is still under construction. If you find another that was good I would be glad to know about them to send them along on the list. 
My favorite Vet and some pictures of pups he has done: Pew, Carl L DVM (801) 225-5395  525 S State St Orem, UT 84058-6303

Dr Pew is the best there is period, He is an AKC Judge for the Doberman and Showed and bred dobes for many years with his perfected crop. If you are within travel distance, see Dr. Pew!

Good California Vet: Dr. LaBounty in Studio City, CA (just North of LA) (818) 762-1491

Strohbehn Veterinary Clinic 430 W South Omaha Bridge Rd #w, Council Bluffs, IA (712) 366-0556
Dr. Weaver at Squaw Peak Animal Hospital.  His number is 602-553-8855 Phoenix Az

Pender Veterinary Center
4001 Lagato Rd
Fairfax, VA. 22033
703-591-3304

Dr. Johnson does the ears and his extension is #109.
http://pendervet.com

Dr Holt is not only a very concerned and good vet, but seems to be rather good at this. Cooper came home with very clear instructions on care and also 2 weeks of antibiotics and pain meds for the 1st few days.

Dr Holt runs Jenison Animal Hospital at  648 Chicago Dr. Jenison, MI 49428  616-457-9200. The ear crop was $218.00. Microchip was $35.00. Not a bad price.

Click here: Jenison Animal Hospital PC - Jenison, MI 49428 - Reviews: Animal Hospitals, Veterinarians, Kennels & Pet Boarding

Animal Care Center

Dr. Tim O'Rourke

1005 E. College Way

Mt. Vernon, WA 98273

(360) 848-0180

AlphaAdmin's picture
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I stand corrected. Good work krugerspop!

dobenhorseluvr's picture
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I had just sent you an e-mail but if anyone else is interested, I reccomend Millstone vets you can view them at http://www.millstonepetdoc.com they specialize in ear cropping.  About 6 weeks ago I had my pup done there and she did a great job.  She bred and has cropped and show her own Dobes which i know of one that got a champion title.  If I can be of more help please let me know  GOOD LUCK !!

aprilwands's picture
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I just thought I would share this...take it for what it is worth.  My pup Ripley (11 weeks on Saturday) had a vet appointment last night for her shots, etc.  I read many, many posts in forums about the increased risk of ear infections (of various kinds) in floppy eared dogs, and I mentioned as much to the vet last night.  Well, he ran up one side of me and down the other about wanting to get her ears done and yelled, "Bull$hit" when I mentioned the increased potential for ear mites and other infections as ONE reason I wanted the surgery for her.  He told me I was being cruel and selfish for putting her through the surgery for the sake of vanity.  I held my ground, because she's my dog, and until it's illegal in this country, I have a right to alter her ears.  Period.  I don't know how so many owners could be commenting on a decline in the number of ear mites and other infections in cropped dogs as opposed to uncropped dogs but no one "official" wants to admit that maybe, just maybe there's a possibility that the surgery does have more than just aesthetic value.  I get the fact that no one wants to cause their dog unnecessary pain, but mites and chronic infections can be difficult to clear up, extremely painful for the dog and costly for the owners to treat.  Wait....did I just hit on something here?  Did anyone else just hear the cash register at the vet clinic groan?  One surgery could possibly prevent numerous vet visits?  HMMMMM.

AlphaAdmin's picture
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;D Perhaps you have hit on something....

I think what's really going on is that there is a certain veterinary movement against ear cropping. These are that same people who want every animal altered at 15 weeks before they are allowed to develop.

Or possibly, he's just a lousy surgeon and his animals suffer from his clumsiness. It's hard so say. Just remember veterinarians are people with opinions and emotions and the mixture of the two just like everyone else. Who knows if he's ever even seen the procedure performed or treated a dog after it.

Grendelspop's picture
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I think I met this vet once too. >:( . I think that one problem may be that the majority of the dogs these vets treat are big lap dogs and pets. They have no experience around true working dogs that actually need and use these new appendages. Granted a lot of people crop just for the look, myself included but after that dog learns to use his new ears, they become tools whether were using him for guard duty or just guarding the couch, once you have bonded with your Dobe he can in a sense talk to you with them. That in itself warrants cropping in my opinion. If we can make the decision to circumcise our children then who's to tell us we can’t trim our dog’s ears.

nath6210's picture
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I have a 4 months doberman puppy. and he is uncrop. my question is its ok to crop my doberman ears eventhough he is 4 months going to 5 months? it will stand? thanks. please reply. i nid an answer. thanks a lot!

AlphaAdmin's picture
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Hi nath6210,

Your first problem will be finding a vet who will crop ears at this age. And, yes, the ears will be much more difficult to train. I would certainly suggest going with a medium or working crop. A show (long) crop most likely will be too difficult.

Did you just get the Puppy?

nath6210's picture
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i got my Puppy last June 28, 2008. and i planning to crop his ear. Thanks a lot horseatingweeds.

pittiemom's picture
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When I get a dobie, i will definetly be getting ears and tail done..  We adopted our first pit at 6 months, to old to do anything.  He has the worst case of happy tail ever.  It's always bleeding, knocking stuff down, and it's so hard to keep happy tail bandaged up!!  One day in the car he hit his tail on something and blood was every where... we took my car to go get it detailed and i swear to you this man thought i murdered somebody..  Well our second baby, it was early enough to get ears done, but too late for tail.  Well I didn't do it because of what people would think.  I am at war with ear mites and other ear infections monthly!!  I know they aren't dobies but still enough for me to crop and dock!!

Grendelspop's picture
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I have seen some dogs with tails that are just mangled. The worst part about it is the infections. Can you think of a worse spot to have an open wound?  In my opinion happy dogs and whip-like tails do not mix.

jakenelson's picture
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Joined: 2008-07-01

Hi I'm in Indianapolis and I'm wondering if anyone has a vet to recommend for a medium ear cropping.  Also what age should this be done before.  She is 9 weeks old yesterday.

AlphaAdmin's picture
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Hi jakenelson,

Most vets like to do the crop at or around 10 weeks - after 12 weeks the procedure becomes much more difficult.

BlueNemo's picture
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Joined: 2008-07-22

I can recommend my vet. They do laser crop only (MUCH better than scalpel crops), $200, and a beautiful job!! Here's my boy,
http://s163.photobucket.com/albums/t286/PoolesPitbulls/?action=view&curr...
If the link doean't work, copy asnd paste it.

My vet is Dr. Daryl Waits DVM
Washington Court House, Ohio 43160
(740) 335-6161

Tell him Savannah Poole sent you

Angelina's picture
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Joined: 2008-09-07

I have a question horseatingweeds..what is the age limit of getting the pups ears clipped? I plan on getting one in the summer, and i am not 100% sure i want the ears clipped, so i was gonna wait a few months after i get the puppy to decide if i wanted it done or not. What do you think? :-\

AlphaAdmin's picture
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Hi Angelina,

Most veterinarians have their own preference for age. Some like the ears before they have developed, so around 8 or 9 weeks. Others like to do the procedure after the ear has developed long and floppy, around 10 weeks. Most will be hesitant about cropping a puppy over 12 weeks old, and it will be more work to make stand.

It's best to make the decision and find a veterinarian long before you get the puppy. The age range leaved a short time window.

Angelina's picture
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Okay, thank you. I think i do want to get them done, but i wasn't sure what age is too old to do it. So thank you for answering my question:-)

BlueNemo's picture
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To the nice people I met at Dr Junk's office today, with Jake, my email is jayzgrl02@yahoo.com and website is http://pooles-pitbulls.tripod.com

Savannah

loungepup's picture
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Joined: 2008-09-29

we left them floppy for a number of reasons....one theyre cute...two we spent enough on these hounds...and three the brothers would have eaten the ears alive...i think....but i sure do miss the look...they would look so incredible...tails were docked ...i like that...same as my old rottie...and nice point on the ears being like the gsd....i hadnt noticed...but all that floppy is nothing...no veins to keep them warm....they are already coming in cold...so i rub them warm for them....nice eh....

rgreen4's picture
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Having gone through the process with Dobe's over the past 25 or so years, I have never really noticed a puppy coming home feeling or indicating pain. If your pup is experiencing pain, you will see it in their eyes. The are more bothered by the fact that that have this tape thing on their head.

Any foreign object bothers a dog. My 5 1/2 year old Red, had a cyst taken off the top of his tail about 10 days ago. At first he didn't bother it too much, but after the third day (when it started to itch) he tried to get to it. He could get his tongue on it but couldn't get to the stitches with his teeth. It's the itching from the healing that bothers them and caused them to want to get to the stitches. This is even true in us humans, which if you've ever had surgery, you know.

Same thing with the puppies and their ears. The stiches itch, and the sticks or frame bother them. So you see them try to shake them off, but off course if they are on properly they won't come off. Once everything is off and the ears are "normal" you will see a dog with far more expressive ears than any dog with long ears could ever be. They can actually turn them fore and aft, pick them up, lay them down or let them be at half mast. All signals to what the dog is feeling.

As to the risk, yes there is. But has been said it's the anesthesia that's the risk. As on anesthesiologist told me before a surgery we don't pay them to put us to sleep but to wake us up. But, most of us experience at various times in our lives, and our dogs are no different. We must keep in mind that the only canines in the world with true natural ears are in the wild - Wolves, Foxes and Coyotes. All with pointed open ears. There are domestic dogs that come close, the Shepards, the northern working dogs, and even the old photos of the Doberman before it was "improved" after the early 1900's has naturally short pointed ears. In fact the traditional "German Cut" which is a shorter trim that stands about half as tall as the "show" cut tried to emulate the original ear structure of the Dobe.

Rednailz's picture
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Opinions on this topic are very divided!  Some breeders told us that a Doberman without cropped ears is not a Doberman at all and they would not let puppies go with floppy ears.  Another breeder said that if we wanted cropped ears, his vet would do it before the pups went home, but he also gave the option of floppy ears.  Finally, the breeder we went with said it was our choice, but if we wanted cropped ears, she HIGHLY recommended her vet.  Her dogs all had cropped ears.

We went with floppy and have trained the lads to have their ears cleaned regularly.  The ears stay clean but we go through the routine anyway.  As far as expressiveness is concerned, Basil has longer ears and moves them so many different ways, you can really tell his emotions.  Ajax, on the other hand, is much more subtle and harder to read.

I agree with the other posters who noted that people mistake them for other breeds.  To me, it's obvious that a red Dobe is not a chocolate Lab, but that distinction seems lost on alot of people!  And the black one gets confused comments that he looks sort of like a Rottweiler but not....

richard wells's picture
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Hi folks, its been quite a few months since i was last on this forum and things have really developed on here into a busy comunity ;D

Im in the UK and we havnt been allowed to crop ears here for the best part of 40 years, ive owned and bred dobes for 28 years so all have had floppy ears, i have to say in all that time ive only experianced one ear infection which was cleared up with a weeks anti-biotic drops, ive never had mites or any real problems with ears and apart from a quick look one a week to check them i clean dobe ears with the same tool i clean my own ears.......my elbow ;D ;D ;D

my dobe is one of the last UK tail less dobes as this was also outlawed in April 07, so over here we arenow getting used to tail whip dobermans as well.

I used to crop tails and did them myself with bands at 3 days old and in the whelping box with brood bitch present, no worries and no pain at all.

so for those of you who are worried about stories of ear damage or exsessive problems with floppy ears id say PLEASE dont worry your dogs ears will be fine.

I love crop eared dogs , without tails because thats the waythey were supposed to be and were for years, the procedures done correctly are not cruel or painful but unfortunatly its just not allowed here in the UK or most of Europe now.

What i am interested in however is why Dobe breeders havnt developed pricked ear dobes naturally???ive now come across a dobe where her ears stand upright when on alert and troting round but flop down when she is asleep, apparently they original breeder calls them happy ears ::) ::)

http://s254.photobucket.com/albums/hh89/rmwells/?action=view&current=RIM...

http://s254.photobucket.com/albums/hh89/rmwells/?action=view&current=kod...

if you call her name they stand fully upright without any droop, they swivel backwards when she is thinking :D :D

i wonder how many generations it would take to breed this in consistantly??

richard

Grendelspop's picture
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Good point! These look a little large but the Idea is sound. Floppy ears were a man made trait after all. It would be cool to see a breeder spend a few generations on strong eared dogs to see what happens and then maybe try and breed them smaller and smaller. This would be a good option for non-crop areas such as Europe and maybe the U.S. one day. 

Rednailz's picture
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Richard - Thanks for sharing the photo!  I love those ears!!  :)

shitakimarine's picture
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Help! I have an 11 week old that was scheduled to have his ears done last week but the vet had a diabetic attack and is in the hospital for two weeks. We can't wait that long! I was hoping that someone could recommend a talented vet in Jacksonville, Florida ???

rgreen4's picture
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I don't know about Jacksonville, Fl, but I do know about Valdosta, Ga. Northside Animal Hospital in Valdosta, Ga 229-247-2983 had done all but one of mine over the past 17 years, even though he is a little out of the way for me. Here is a link to another post with pictures of Princess my latest. Also in the post is Red, who though a miscommunication between me and the breeder was not cropped until he was almost 15 weeks old and then his left ear folded and I was never able to get it to stand. Princess was done at 12 weeks. When calling, just mention my last name.

The link (see reply #4) [url=http://www.gentledoberman.com/forum]http://www.gentledoberman.com/forum]

howsefrau32's picture
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OMG, those ears are CUTE!!! Look like bunny ears.  My dobe has goofy long ears, too.  My husband (jokingly) calls her his flop eared freak, since he is in favor of the cropped ear look and not the natural look.  I however, cannot imagine my girl without her floppy ears.  I also like that people don't initially think she is a dobe and therefore aren't petrified of her.  Here is my little flop eared freak:

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

That is a good looking girl. It's a matter of personal choice, but to me, they don't look right.  But, a Dobe with long ears looks better than one with a bad crop job, which is why when choosing the vet, it's important to see some of his past work.

avortman's picture
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Joined: 2007-12-22

Ultimately it is up to the owner of the pup, it is your pup and you should be able to decide what to do with the ears.  if done properly it is no worse than a spaying or neutering the dog is under sedation. I am very fortunate to have a vet that is extremely skilled in ear cropping and does it freehand (no templates).
Look at the show cut below: the ears are standing after 11 weeks!!! depending on the skill of the vet and the leather of the dogs ear it can take up to 6 months to get them to stand.

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

That's a fine looking pup Avortman. Haven't heard from you for a while, and glad to have your experienced input again.

casecraker's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-21

Well Spoken Horse!!  My pup was smiling on the way home from the vet ;)

Krowbar's picture
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Joined: 2010-01-08

Hello all,
   I want to say first that this sight and a few others helped me out a lot when i was trying to decide what to do with Bailey's ears. after researching the pros and con's for a few days i decided to go for it. In my research i found something about reasoning behind the ear crop and tail dock. the dobie was breed to be a dog of great strengths. Strong will, great compassion, and most of all the protector of families. the tail dock and ear crop was done to working dogs such as this as a necessity. dogs with ears and tails have bits to be grabbed, tugged, ripped at and bit. tails and ears suffering damage from bites or other outside sources, become infected very easily as well as heal times are increased do to the constant knocking around. it ended up being better for the tail to be removed to not only keep the dog in work, but to keep the dog healthy. The ears are for not only the biting and tugging but for low voiced commands and other faint noises. the dog is able to pick up sounds better from all around. Bailey had his ears done one week ago and you can see right away what a difference in his ability to pick up faint noises. he is a great puppy and took to the no scratching allowed very well. he would use his rear paw and try scratching the block but would never touch his ears. when we picked him up from the vet all he wanted to do was eat everything and play. i noticed no time at all where he was in pain. I did give him his pain meds twice a day as the vet said to, just to make sure. the meds also made him a little groggy. i don't think he minded though he only eats sleeps and plays anyways so it was just another nap to him lol.
  My final reason for the ears was for training. if he does get in a tiff, there wont be ears or tail for the bad guys to grab/ subdue with. i start training Bailey in puppy classes this weekend. once he is out of puppy class he will be moved up to other training. i am in the military and i am away from home, and my wife. i wanted Bailey to be there for my wife on those late nights when "a tree branch scratches at the window." he will be going through allot of training including hand/movement sign training.  Like every member of the family Bailey has a place and purpose. he is our child to us and will be our protector in the future.

Krowbar and Bailey

matelikinder's picture
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Joined: 2016-09-13

Can anyone recommend someone that could help me post my dogs ears in Jacksonville florida? I really need someone to do it for me correctly. I am failing terribly.

matelikinder's picture
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Joined: 2016-09-13

Did you find someone? Do you know anyone in JAX that can post ears?