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Docking and cropping

6560 Views 53 Replies 31 Participants Last post by  selzer
Which do you prefer? This got me thinking when I saw the Rottie with a tail in the pictures forum.

Personally I like the docking of the tails and cropping of the ears. I can't stand a Dobie without cropped ears or a docked tail. They just look like big dachshunds. I still like Rotts with docked tails. I love a boxer with cropped ears but you hardly ever see them anymore. Great Danes don't really matter as I think they are funky looking either way. Schnauzers look better to me with the cropped ears. Oh, I could go on and on. LOL. Some say it's cruel. I'm on the fence with that one. What do you think?
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I chose that I prefer docking & cropping. I heard docking the tail is real painful, so I probably wouldn't choose to do that (though I'm pretty sure having my son circumcised was painful for him -
even though there is no bone to cut)

Either way, I prefer Dobie's ears cropped. From what I read, and Dobie owners I know - they say that it reduces ear problems that are common in Dobie's. I don't know either way. The only Dobe I know NOW has natural ears & a docked tail.

There was a similar discussion on here last year. Got nasty.
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Originally Posted By: Shandril2

There was a similar discussion on here last year. Got nasty.
I must have missed that one.

Oh well, couldn't get any nastier than what I've seen in the chat room lately. LOL

And of course there is always the "golden lock", but hopefully it will not come to that and everyone will disagree in a civil manner. Yea I know, but there's always hope.
Maybe it was longer ago than last year .... I'm getting old - been here a long time! LOL!

If we keep our voices real low the mods won't hear us.
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Actually, i heard its the ears that are painful. the tail is done at a really young age. unfortunately, i don't think they give them painkillers for it because they are so young. a vet tech told me the ears bleed really badly and are painful.

either way, i prefer to have a dog that does looks great au naturale- like a GSD. no need for docks or crops. i personally don't like the idea of it. if it is a necessity for working, okay, but not purely for asthetic reasons.
I don't mind tails so much, but some breeds just look wrong without cropped ears. Doberman's especially. With natural ears they look like a coonhound, and that is just not the image the breed is supposed to portray.

I have also heard Dobe people say that natural ears are more prone to ear infections. And that due to the very thin, whiplike shape of the tail, non-docked tails are also more prone to being broken. But I don't know if that's actually true, or excuses made to justify the practice.

Many hunting breeds, spaniels mostly, are also traditionally docked to reduce the chance of tail injuries and tails getting full of matts and burrs from working in the field, and to reduce the profile the dog presents when on point (no tail sticking straight up in the air to alert game or get hit with shot). Those also seem like very legitimate reasons.

Obviously there's nothing wrong with people who prefer not to dock or crop, but I also don't think it appropriate for those people to force their opinions on those who do support docking and cropping in breeds where it is traditional to do so. Even if most Dobe's aren't guard dogs and most spaniels don't hunt, there is nothing wrong with fanciers wanting their dog to actually look like the breed it represents.
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I'm totally against docking and cropping. Interesting that some countries are ahead of us in stopping cosmetic surgeries to animals.

For me, the dog should be what it actually is with no alterations.
I don't mind tails b/c I was told they are done right away, before the nerves are even fully developed, sort of like a baby's umbilical cord. Ears...I guess I'm OK with it. For Dobes people told me that it reduces infection and increase the "cone" for hearing, so the dog can hear a lot better and has a wider radius, which is important for a dog that is a work/sport dog being trained for protection work and to be alert.

Overall I stick with breeds where I don't have to choose. I like big prick ears and full tails, those come naturally.

What about dew claws?
Hmmm...this is why I own a shepherd, all you have to do is brush

I wanted a dobe, but I knew I wanted a dog with erect ears also and didn't want to stress over it. I understand that tail docking is done when the pups are 3 days old or younger to minimize pain, but who really knows how much pain the babies actually feel?

In my view, docking and cropping are purely cosmetic - like plastic surgery for humans, as long as the animal is not being traumatized, I feel it's up to the owner whether or not they choose to dock and crop and they shouldn't have to be forced to choose due to a type of ban.

Now de-barking and the de-clawing of cat's is absolutely inhumane in my opinion so don't get me started on those two issues...
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Guess im on the fence on this issue. I never really thought that it caused pain to the animals (im not dumb, lol, just uninformed) as i have never had to deal with docking or cropping a dog before. I thought this was done to make the dog "breed standard". When i think of dobe's i think docked tail and cropped ears, just as a great dane's ears should be up, as well as the rotties tail docked. I thought these were surgical procedure done while the animal is under anesthesia, but now that i've read your posts, i dunno how i feel about causing pain to an animal just to make it look a cerain way. Thanks for the info!
Ear cropping is done under anesthesia. Tail docking is not. I have held pups when their tails were done. They fidget about being held, barely notice the tail docking and go back to sleep the minute you set them back in the box. They are only a 2-3 days old.

Ear cropping is pretty ugly. When we had our Dobe done in 1983 the taping of the raw ears was awful. Now they let the ears heal before taping.
I'm not disagreeing with your assessment of what you saw but that was not my experience. When I worked at a vet clinic we had several clients that bred docking breeds (Cockers, Yorkies, and Dobies). The vet docked the puppies at 3 days old and nearly all of them screamed bloody murder when their tails were cut off. They did go back to nursing relatively quickly but they whimpered the whole time. I found it really heartbreaking and always hoped to be off the days they did that.

At least she did a good job and as a surgical procedure. In rescue we see a lot of botched home jobs with rubber bands etc and those are even worse.

We used to have a Rottie and I admit I much prefer the look of a docked Rottie. I've never had one but I also think cropped Danes are gorgeous and natural eared Danes are doofy looking. However, I don't think I'd ever chose to do either surgery again. Just not worth it to me.

As far as the arguments for doing or not doing it, I've heard the gun dog stuff but it seems inconsistent. I mean, why is a tail a hunting liability for spaniels and pointers but not setters or retrievers? I know they all do different things but I can't see that it would really make that big a difference and as far as practicality, they should leave the Spaniels' tails alone and cut off their ears. Cocker ears are a force to be reckoned with.

I've gotten to where I like natural Spaniel tails. Hopefully when I see enough natural Rotties, I'll get used to that too.
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I will admit that one thing I have always wondered about the breeds that crop ears is why the dogs weren't bred to have erect ears in the first place.

It's obvious from looking at any wild canid that erect ears are the way nature designed canine ears to be. People had to intentionally breed for floppy ears in the breeds that have them. So if they wanted erect ears, why not breed for erect ears?

Granted, I'm sure it's in large part because the existing breeds or types used to create those breeds already had floppy ears, and introducing an erect eared breed to bring the ears up might have also introduced other unwanted characteristics. But still, it seems like it shouldn't have been that hard to get perky ears....
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I know! If only all breed creators had been as sensible as GSD breeders! They wouldn't have to go around trying to reinvent the wheel through surgery, they'd already have the perfect dog!!!

And I'm only half kidding! We have created an awful lot of physical weirdness in dogs in our pursuit of various aesthetics and taken a highly functional form and made it substantially less so.
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Fuddy-duddy here! I do not like cropping or docking. You wouldn'r recognize the Giant Schnauzers here in Germany... no crop, no dock. I admit that Dobie ears look spiffy cropped. I understand Boxers, Rotties, etc all look more jaunty with that tail docked. I just do not personally agree with the concept. Breed for an erect ear or short tail within those breeds if you must, but cosmetic surgery/amputation to achieve 'a look' doesn't sit well with me.

I'm a big fan of GSDs, Malamutes, Tervuren, natural-looking breeds.
I can see both sides, but ya gotta admit ... <span style="color: #330000"><span style='font-size: 20pt'>O LA LA!</span></span>

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I can't say that I have an objection to either practice. While it may cause some pain when it's done, it is not life altering in the long run- unlike declawing cats for example.

Personal preference- I like docked tails on the breeds for the most part. I've seen Dobies, Boxers, and Great Danes with natural ears and I have to say they look better with their ears down. JMO.
Originally Posted By: BrightelfI do not like cropping or docking. You wouldn'r recognize the Giant Schnauzers here in Germany... no crop, no dock. I admit that Dobie ears look spiffy cropped. I understand Boxers, Rotties, etc all look more jaunty with that tail docked. I just do not personally agree with the concept. Breed for an erect ear or short tail within those breeds if you must, but cosmetic surgery/amputation to achieve 'a look' doesn't sit well with me.
I agree, they do look good that way. But what bugs me is that it's done so that the dogs meet the breed standard. Why is the breed standard such that you have to surgically alter the dog in order for it to conform? That doesn't make any sense to me. Shouldn't the breed standard be the way the breed actually LOOKS, or COULD look through selective breeding, as Chris points out? The idea of performing cosmetic surgery on a dog really bothers me. Guess I'm a fuddy-duddy too!
My friend has a purebred Rott (from a rescue) with a natural tail. I thought it was odd at first but now I think it's weird when I see a docked Rott b/c I'm used to the tail.
i'm with cassidy's mom. i don't understand why breed standards were developed that way if the dog naturally has a long tail, or whatever.

personally, if i had a breed that was normally docked or cropped - i don't see what utility i'd get out of it other than having an aesthetic i was used to, and that doesn't seem like a good enough reason to me.
(but i'd probably circumcize my son, if i had one, so he wouldn't stand out....not sure what the norm is for young kids these days. besides, i grew up in a jewish neighbourhood and dated a muslim for 5 years, so my experiences are slanted. :whistles: anyways, basically, i'm a hypocrite
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