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The Italian One
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I thought it might be nice for some of us to share about dealing with weak or floppy ears.

So lets talk about it. You've tried everything and your GSD's ears just won't stand, now what? How do you deal with the disappointment? How do you deal with the doubt? How do you deal with the dumb comments unknowing people make about your GSD?

Let's help each other by sharing those experiences.
 

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Well, I'll start. It's such a silly, little thing, but wow, how important these ears become! We tried just about everything with Asia's ears. He's a GSD X, so I had my doubts to begin with. We did the taping, glueing them together, Knox gelatin, cottage cheese, too many chew bones to mention and at about 6 months, I gave up. They aren't going up, they were never going to, much too thin, and no amount of tape in the world was going to change that. I was a little disappointed, but once I excepted it, it was a lot easier just to move on. We got Chyna about the time I decided Asia's ears would never stand. She's purebred and her ears looked very promising from day one, so I guess I turned my hopes onto her ears. That helped a lot with the disappointment, too. I now have my cute, floppy-eared Asia, and I also have my noble, very classic GSD-looking Chyna. I imagine if we hadn't gotten Chyna, I might have been a little more disappointed, as it is, I feel I got the best of both worlds. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/068.gif
 

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I have a brother and sister and both of them have floppy ears. Bikers will stand up once in awhile and he has one that is up more then the other. Kates ears never even tried to come up. She was a sickly little thing, not quite sure how sick but I fell in love with her as soon as I saw her. I have just accepted the fact that their ears are the way they are. I do get people asking about Bikers breed, but thats mainly because he is a LC and most folks around here have not see one. I was told not to let them play rough with each other, they could break the cartlidge in their ears. Which made sense, But I never stopped them I felt like it was good for them, as far as leaning certain skills from each othere and just having a good time. I did have a girl in ob class ask if Kate was a pure breed, I said yes and she asked "what kind"?.... /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/really.gif All I can say is they are wonderful dogs and I love them so very very much.
 

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Funny, that this was just posted. I'm going through it with my Ultro. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif I have come to accept that he as very soft ears. His right ear is up, has been for a long time and is not coming down. His left ear however is up with the tip flopping backwards. At first I was not worried and since most of the ear is up, I figured the rest of it would straighten up some day. But he is now 6 months old and it is still like that. Some weeks ago, the tip stood up for about 2 days 90% of the time, so I thought there was hope, but after those two days, it went back to flopping backwards. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif
Just yesterday I contacted a breeder who know about taping and with the help of G-burg, we taped the tip of the ear. This morning however, I guess because the weight of the tape, it is making the ear lean forward. So at this point, I don't know if that is ok or it is not woth it, as I don't want to screw up the whole ear just to fix the tip. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif
I love him dearly and I would not have him replaced, but he is such a gorgeous dog that it would be very debastating if that ear never stood up straight. Has anyone's dog straighten their ears after 6 months? Or is there no hope any longer? I've never had problems with ear, my other four dogs have awesome, erect and strong ears, Ultro is my fist ear problem. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif
 

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[ QUOTE ]
You've tried everything and your GSD's ears just won't stand, now what? How do you deal with the disappointment? How do you deal with the doubt? How do you deal with the dumb comments unknowing people make about your GSD?

[/ QUOTE ]

Unfortunately, I'm not dealing with it very well so I have no advice to give. I think the reason I'm not dealing with it well are a few things....
1) Everyone told me not to worry and when I finally went to see a vet that KNEW about ears when Ekko was 7 months, he told me it was pretty much too late. I still kick myself for it.
2) After taping only once, Ekko had an ear infection and has had them ever since. Also lots of scratching at the ears, so I was never able to tape again.
3) I have a pic of Ekko after the 1st taping where his ears stood for 3 hours. This pic of him is absolutely gorgeous!!

Don't get me wrong, I still think Ekko is gorgeous even with the floppy ears. But he truly looked like a different dog with those ears standing. The breeder had offered to take him back, but I'm not going to give him back over floppy ears. I love him so and always will /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/puppy3.gif
Even now at almost 19 months, I still have hope that I can try taping one more time, but I know in my heart it is not to be. As you can see, I am not coping well. I hope someone has great advice on how to deal with this! LOL
 

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[ QUOTE ]
This morning however, I guess because the weight of the tape, it is making the ear lean forward. So at this point, I don't know if that is ok or it is not woth it, as I don't want to screw up the whole ear just to fix the tip.
I love him dearly and I would not have him replaced, but he is such a gorgeous dog that it would be very debastating if that ear never stood up straight. Has anyone's dog straighten their ears after 6 months? Or is there no hope any longer? I've never had problems with ear, my other four dogs have awesome, erect and strong ears, Ultro is my fist ear problem.


[/ QUOTE ] I would try glueing in a small piece of toilet paper roll. Cut a piece the same shape and size of the tip of his ear, just a little longer for added support, and glue it onto the inside of the ear, I used Tear and Mend. We did this with Asia TOTALLY soft ears, and they never bent or fell because of the weight, it was the only time I got to see his ears erect. It didn't work on him, but his ears were never going to go up. I've seen Utro's pics and I'm betting with a little help you could probly still get that tip up, but I wouldn't mess with taping again. If it's bending the ear forward, like you said, you don't want to end up with a bigger problem than you started with.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
I just checked him at lunch time and his ear is still up. I'll see how it goes, but if not I'll do what you said. Thanks for the advice!

[/ QUOTE ] /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thumb.gif Keep us posted!
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I want so badly to post a picture of Bandit now with his ears standing. He is 2 1/2 yrs old now. Some of you may remember how distressed I was for the longest time. We taped, worried, used tent-ups for a short time and thought that his ears would never stand. We fed cottage cheese, gelatin, and he chewed bones. Nothing seemed to help. Finally one ear was standing at times and he was way over 6 months by then. His other ear would stand occasionally but would flop back over. Finally now his ears are standing all the time. They are not hard ears like his brother's but they stand straight up and are beautiful. I have tried to post a picture from photobucket but just cannot master it.
I would e-mail someone a picture if you could post it for me. Just send me a pm.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
Has anyone's dog straighten their ears after 6 months?

[/ QUOTE ] I taped Caleb's ears when he was 7 months. He has thin and very soft ears, but I was determined to make those ears stand up (I do realize now how silly that was). I used the toilet paper rolls cut in the shape of the ear. I tried rollers first, but they didn't work that well. The toilet paper rolls did work though and they worked wonderfully. Caleb's ears are still soft and thin, but they do stand. They flop when he runs though!
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I did the toilet paper rolls too. Poor Bandit. I tried moleskin, all kinds of hair rollers, tampons,popcicle sticks, everything I read about that anyone had done. He got to where he would run when he saw me get the tape out. Don't give up though. Bandit's ears have finally starting standing up all the time in the last 6 months. He was 2 in September.
 

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The Italian One
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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

[ QUOTE ]
I want so badly to post a picture of Bandit now with his ears standing. He is 2 1/2 yrs old now.

[/ QUOTE ]

Anngie, does this guy look familiar?



Everyone, this is Bandit. And yes, Anngie he is a very good looking boy! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/18_thumb.gif
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I've never had to deal with soft ears in any of my GSD's..Funny thing tho,,when I got my aussie , here I would be living with my first flop eared dawg,,and her's started standing up straight as the GSD! LOL..

It IS a physical thing! To have a "prick" eared aussie? YIKES~! LOL..Luckily one good glueing did the trick, but if it hadn't worked,,I would still love the little weasel,,she would just be my generic "border" collie with no tail..
*vbg*
Diane
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I am guessing I am a bit late here but I saw what Rugs said and I bought our two dogs from this lady here in NC (I live near Charlotte by the way) and she said the cartlage is sensitive and they can't bit them, etc. I let them play and all and my dogs ears used to stand up but not anymore. The males right ear is up really good and the other straight down and same with the female but both of hers are both way down. Like I said, they used to be up on both dogs and both ears, not anymore and I can't get them to do nothing. They are almost 9 months now and I am guessing it's too late. I am going to read all this stuff on this forum board to see what I can get. Looks like a cool place by the way!!!

Shawn-
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

Hey Shawn....Welcome! Bikers ears were up when he was a puppy, then they were down. I kept waiting for them to go back up, since alot of people said that if they were up once they will go back up. Never did happen, I tried to tape and he hated it. So I just decided to let them go. My female, Kate's ears never even tried to come up. My dogs are 1 1/2 years old. Bikers one ear will stand up but for the most part, they are down. Some people will say you could try tapeing. I just didn't see any reason to put him through all that just because I wanted his ears to stand.

Who did you get your dogs from? There was a breeder in Raleigh that we had looked at. I'm in New Bern.
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

Well... the place was near Raleigh I think. It was about 2 hours from here. Not quite in Raleigh. I cannot remember the name for some reason. I will go ask my father and see if he can remember. I live down here in Weddington right near SC boarder under Charlotte.
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

Well my father cannot rememeber either. He said it was way up 77. That is all I know haha.
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I have to say I was soo relieved when I started reading that its not just me that worries about the ears! Floyd's ears were both up, perfect, then one morning i woke up and one was leaning in over his head! I freaked, i thought omg what did i do to him? Called the breeder, she chuckled and said no worries, its normal, as a result of teething. Do you think I believe her? Nope lol i started surfing the net looking for proof. Sure enough there it was, tons of people worried about the very same thing I was. The only thing that has me confused is, many say not taping before 6 months and its to late, others say can take up to 1 yr. So here I sit still not really knowing when to really worry about it.
 

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Re: Dealing With Your GSD's Ears NOT Standing Erec

I remember how focused I was on Dante's ears when I got him (He was 4 months old) and how hard it was for me.
I finally understood that he would hate having his ears taped and since he wasn't going in the show ring or going to be bred I'd just let them ride and see what happened. His right ear ran the whole gambit from leaning to folding to flopping before finally settling into a "friendly" ear.
When I talked to the breeder she suggested breathe-rite strips but even those I knew would drive Dante insane.
You really can't tell that the tip is soft if he's at attention though that ear doesn't have the slightly concave structure that his other ear has...but when he's running /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/33_rofl.gif it's flapping in the wind!! Sometimes at night when he's really tired the tip will flop forward (used to go backwards) or when he gets wet it'll flop forward.

I struggled with letting go of the whole ear thing, it was a chore to realize that no one has the perfect GSD and Dante though not the perfect GSD was the perfect GSD for me!

Edited to add: And between the funky ear, the black spots on his tongue and his sable coloring (Including the shoulder stripe) I was always being asked what kind of cross he was. Now that he's older and more mature it happens less.

Edited again to add: /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/33_rofl.gif Just now Dante came in the study and flopped down on his blanket. I looked over and that "friendly" ear tip is rolled backwards again!
 
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