I have had 4 dobies and all have had their ears cropped. There's nothing wrong with the natural ear, but I love and prefer the long elegant cropped ear that is so much a part of the doberman look. (It's funny, my vet has told me that some people don't recognize the dobie with natural ears as a doberman, and often ask if it is a hound dog.) I tire of defending my choice to crop the ear with those that maintain that it is cruel, inhumane, and unnecessary surgery done only for cosmetic reasons. Firstly, as an experienced dobie owner, I can vouch that the discomfort lasts only a couple days at most, and the taping doesn't phase the dog at all-- they don't miss a beat. And yes, the dog can be just as expressive with a cropped ear as with a natural ear. True, it is done for cosmetic reasons, but my new analogy is this: I am an RN, and everytime I have to prepare a newborn baby boy for a circumcision procedure I can't help but think, that it is an inhumane, painful procedure, done only for cosmetic reasons. (for those who have never seen a circumcision procedure performed, I can tell you that it is barbaric at best). So when someone bashes me for my decision to crop my dobie's ears, I ask them if they have a son, and if they do, I ask them if their son was circumcised.... If they are going to make ear cropping illegal, they should also banish circumcision in newborn babies... I rest my case.
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