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Cosmetic Procedures on Dogs...

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  • Original Poster

    #21
    I would agree ear cropping is a MUCH more invasive and painful process than a super early dock or dew claw removal. Still, a lot of owners swear their pups don't mind a bit. I'm not sure how well we humans can tell that though since a lot of animals tend to adjust and deal with injuries like it's no big deal even if they are uncomfortable.

    @S1969: My "wonky" comment was directed towards breed that have cropped and docked for a very long time and have, consequently, not really had to worry about tails and ears matching a standard at birth. Let's say ear cropping and tail docking were outlawed, there would be some otherwise outstanding individuals that suddenly no longer fit the "natural" standard. Ears can have an odd set to them, be too long, too floppy, too erect, not folded enough, etc; and tails can be too long, too thin, too curled, too straight, etc.

    It would be interesting to see a study on breeds with thin tails and how often they get injured to the point of requiring amputation. I think despite the stories we hear, it's likely not a large enough number to warrant a dock for safety's sake. But I could be wrong = ) My greyhound has a very thin tail that is pretty crazy when she's excited, but she's yet to injure it. She DEFINITELY uses it for balance when running, and it expresses so much of her current attitude and mental state (to me and other dogs) that I think it's important.

    I don't think it's the initial docking that's the issue (not much pain at all and quick healing), I think it's the loss of a fairly useful appendage that is the issue to me.

    Also, I've definitely heard of owners with cropped ears that say their dog is MUCH less happy in icky weather.

    The thing that got me thinking about this was my ventures into other breed-specific dog forums. I would love to own a dobe at some point, so I've always tried to keep tabs on them, haha. I discovered several very long time participants in the breed who seriously believe they would leave the breed and never look back if cropping and docking were outlawed. Their reasoning is 1) Life is too short to live with a dog they find ugly (this is a direct quote, no hyperbole) and 2) No one should take away their rights to do that to their dog, so they would stop supporting the breed. 3) Requiring natural ears and tail would remove a lot of otherwise exceptional individuals from the gene pool and harm the breed. 4) The breed is a "cropped and docked breed" and that's what the standard says, so that's what the standard should always be. This argument is usually supported by herr Doberman's vision or some such nonsense (have you SEEN the dogs he bred? Nothing like today's dobe, so apparently some changes to his vision are okay, just not all...)

    Also, as far as breed standards go, I'm pretty sure it is now acceptable to show all natural animals in the typical c/d breeds (right? I could be wrong on this as I'm not a big participant in dog shows...) However, many times it's hard to find an exceptional individual that also has perfect ears and tail. Or the standard is too vague on what the natural look is, so the c/d individuals usually win unless the natural dog is absolutely outstanding.

    Plus it's just hard to compete with a look that has been the norm for decades. It's kind of like with saddlebreds and their set tails - if someone tries to go in and win with a natural tail in a division where everyone else is set, the horse has to be SO much better because part of the look will seem "off" to the judge whether he's consciously aware of it or not.

    Comment


    • #22
      well if I ever got a dobie or a dane I think I would crop the ears and the tail for the dobie, I like the look and I think they look kinda silly with long ears. I feel that caring for the ears is just part of caring for the puppy and if you don't want to then don't crop the ears.

      then again I don't think i would want a bloodhound or basset due to feeling their ears are to long and heavy or a cocker b/c I have known so many that get ear infections from owners not cleaning them.

      plus I love the look of my pointerXheeler with his big stand up bat ears and they arent very furry and he seems to have no problems

      Comment


      • #23
        One of the few people I know whose Dobe's ears are natural had an interesting reason for leaving them alone.

        Her condo complex bans Dobermans. She hoped leaving the ears natural would fool the sorts of people who might complain. She's had Alex (whose most dangerous characteristic is his tongue - he's a big kisser) for six years now and either no one's figured it out or can't be bothered to rat on her!

        Comment


        • #24
          My pit has a tail that looks like a snarled, city rat tail- she actually has a 90-degree hook at the end because it's been broken several times (before I got her from a shelter). I also have to be very, very careful about her wagging it into things- her tail is literally CONSTANTLY wagging into things when she's awake/standing, so she's suffered lacerations on its tip on more than one occasion. They were extremely difficult to treat, and required some pretty serious, labor intensive attention, as she would wag them back open really quickly if we didn't watch her like a hawk. We seem to have gotten it under control over the past few months, but I do worry about her breaking it/lacerating it again. OTOH, she's also the most pain tolerant dog I've ever met. Her brother "stabbed her" with a stick by accident once (playing in the yard, ran into her I suppose), and she had a pretty deep puncture wound that needed stitches, and I didn't even notice it until she came inside 30 minutes later. Nothing like running/jumping/playing with a hole in your shoulder...

          I wouldn't consider amputating her tail at this stage unless we weren't able to adequately treat the injuries she's sustained to it. In hindsight, though, I wonder if she wouldn't have been better off having it docked as a very young pup. Unfortunately, you never know if that's going to be necessary when they are that age, so who knows?

          My other dog (corgi/retriever mix) has his dew claws still, and I WISH WISH WISH the vet hadn't looked at me like I was asking her to remove one of his legs when I asked her about removing them during his (very early) neuter. I took him to a low-cost clinic for that surgery, and she told me removing dew claws was considered an "amputation" and that it was a terribly cruel thing. Now he's got huge, dangly, floppy, attached-by-skin dew claws that get stuck in/on everything. And he's a complete drama queen, so that doesn't help. I am convinced that he would have been just fine having them removed as a pup. Water under the bridge, now, though...
          Here today, gone tomorrow...

          Comment


          • #25
            I'm fine with dew claws, not with tails and ears. Having witnessed itty bitty puppies getting their tails docked--having the tails literally cut off with a pair of scissors while the puppies screamed--I can't support that. Admittedly, dew claws are done the same way, but there's a purpose. Tail docking is purely cosmetic.
            Against My Better Judgement: A blog about my new FLF OTTB
            Do not buy a Volkswagen. I did and I regret it.
            VW sucks.

            Comment


            • #26
              Originally posted by amastrike View Post
              Tail docking is purely cosmetic.
              Even in my case where my dog's tail has been repeatedly broken and took 6 weeks to heal last time she broke the tip of it open? My vet actually brought up the idea of amputation last time, but was sure to explain that amputation on a 3 year old dog is a MAJOR procedure.
              Here today, gone tomorrow...

              Comment


              • #27
                Originally posted by amastrike View Post
                I'm fine with dew claws, not with tails and ears. Having witnessed itty bitty puppies getting their tails docked--having the tails literally cut off with a pair of scissors while the puppies screamed--I can't support that. Admittedly, dew claws are done the same way, but there's a purpose. Tail docking is purely cosmetic.
                I have seen litters docked between 2 and 5 days and most puppies barely wince, much less scream.
                Their nervous system is not fully operant yet and they feel it enough to move from it and maybe vocalize, but in less than a few more seconds, they don't remember.
                I would not think that second of discomfort that many don't even notice is reason not to dock.

                I don't like short legged dogs, corgis, wienie dogs and such because they are mutations that harm the dogs, but I would never tell others they can't breed or own them because I don't like the idea of on purpose bred dogs that are deformed and will have back issues from it.
                Lovely dogs as they are, they are not "right", but that they are such neat dogs is what someone else loves in them.

                If we want to be too particular about letting people do what they want or not with the animals they own, we need to be careful to determine with some common sense where society has a right to interfere and where citizen's rights to do what they want start.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #28
                  Originally posted by Mara View Post
                  Her condo complex bans Dobermans. She hoped leaving the ears natural would fool the sorts of people who might complain. She's had Alex (whose most dangerous characteristic is his tongue - he's a big kisser) for six years now and either no one's figured it out or can't be bothered to rat on her!
                  I was actually looking at adopting a dobe before I got a greyhound. I've always LOVED the breed, but they aren't allowed in our building... I thought, hmmm, if I get one with natural ears. Shoot, half the time people don't even know what my greyhound is (pretty distinctive look), so I figured floppy ears on a dobe would be instant camo. "Oh, he's a lab-mix." Haha. Especially if you get a non black and tan (a lot of people will even get confused with a cropped dobe if he's not black and tan.)

                  But then I got all nervous about being sneaky, and I discovered I loved greyhounds too, so it all worked out. I will have a dobe at some point though to play with my greys = )

                  I have to say though, walking my dog at night in the city, I could definitely see wanting to put cropped ears on a dobe for that "look." I still don't think I would do it to a pup, but I would consider an adult rescue where it's already done. Those cropped ears definitely seem to make people a little leery, which I'm totally okay with when walking at night = ) (People have also been known to cross the street to avoid my "fire breathing" greyhound who's the least fierce looking dog I've ever met, so who knows...)

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Originally posted by bort84 View Post
                    I was actually looking at adopting a dobe before I got a greyhound. I've always LOVED the breed, but they aren't allowed in our building... I thought, hmmm, if I get one with natural ears. Shoot, half the time people don't even know what my greyhound is (pretty distinctive look), so I figured floppy ears on a dobe would be instant camo. "Oh, he's a lab-mix." Haha. Especially if you get a non black and tan (a lot of people will even get confused with a cropped dobe if he's not black and tan.)
                    I wouldn't be so sure that floppy ears would fool a lot of people. My doberman has natural ears and a docked tail. In his six months on earth (where he has met many, many, many people), one person has not known what breed he is immediately. That one person only saw a picture of him at 5 weeks old and asked if he was a chocolate lab.

                    ETA - I know you're not planning to sneak in a floppy eared dobe. I was just commenting on the idea that a lot of people think floppy eared dobes don't look like dobes. I've only had one person guess wrong!
                    Last edited by Phaxxton; May. 11, 2011, 01:41 PM.


                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Originally posted by CosMonster View Post
                      I think fake testicles are absolutely absurd. J

                      ust like the "truck balls" you see occasionally...I just can't respect a man who feels the need to put that on his truck. Makes me think he's rather inadequate, or at least insecure.
                      I saw a truck parked outside of my work place once. It was totally pimped out - lots of chrome, jacked way up, huge tires and a set of those testicles. Blue testicles! Seriously? Blue? Someone actually put blue balls on their truck!?! Considering how much he seemed to be over-compensating, I guess they might have been appropriate.

                      Back to the main post, I don't know much about dogs but I do like the look of cropped ears. I wouldn't have it done myself but I think it's striking. I think I remember reading or hearing that the trend originally started because of the work the dogs - dobis at least - were in (back when people actually used them as real working dogs and not show/pet animals). I think it was for their protection somehow. Or maybe I just dreamed all that.

                      As for the other stuff, I don't know enough to comment. Except for the fake testicles. They are just stupid in dogs and on trucks.
                      "Dogs are man's best friend. Cats are man's adorable little serial killer." -- theoatmeal.com

                      Comment


                      • #31
                        We have two dogs, both have cropped tails (both cropped before we got them). Our min pin has natural ears, I don't like min pins with cropped ears. She totally looks like a dork sometimes because she has very large ears (think bats, lol) but it fits her personality well!

                        our other dog Toy fox terrier is supposed to have ears that stand up naturally, They never stood up on their own when he was younger. He is 6 now, and they are finally standing up (sorta) if he is sleepy one ear is floppy, when he is alert or excited they both stick up.

                        Hilarious dogs they both are! I love them to death how they are.

                        I want a Doberman some day, and I LOVE the natural ears! I will never crop for any reason! I think it is too painful and cruel, especially just for looks.

                        If people want to get cosmetic alterations, great, you make the decision, you understand the pain, it's your choice. But dogs don't.

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          When I got my Aussie, my breeder told me that they crop the tails because in the "olden" days a cropped tail dog was considered a working farm dog, and the dog would then be considered "livestock" versus a "pet".

                          ** Please note this was a very long time ago, some facts may be a little mixed up due to my horrible, horrible memory.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            despite liking the look of some crops/docks/etc, I think I've come to the conclusion that when it's purely for cosmetic reasons, I'm not comfortable with the surgeries. I love the look of a cropped doberman, for example,
                            you do? I hate the look and feel of the scar tissue on the chopped-off ears, and watching puppies suffer for months with the surgery/healing/and taping I would have to say that ear cropping is out right abuse and no one should have the right to inflict that on an animal. Dobes look really good in their natural ears, and great danes especially look weird when cropped but gorgeous in their natural ears. Tail docking at a very young age is a more iffy situation, but why do it? I like to see wagging tails. Don't you?

                            If you want an animal with pointy ears and no tail just breed for it. There was a study where they transferred natural bobbed tail into the boxer breed by out-crossing to natural bobbed tail corgis then selecting for bobbed tail boxers, in only a few generations they had naturally tailless dogs that looked and acted just like boxers.

                            Dewclaws- I've owned quite a few dogs with their dewclaws and they use them. To hold things, to grip the ground on sharp turns. Chopping them off for no good reason is cruel.
                            And let's not even get into cat declawing. Utter cruelty.

                            All of these atrocities have been banned in many countries for some years. Why not in the U.S.?

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Believe it or not

                              Originally posted by White Lie View Post
                              When I got my Aussie, my breeder told me that they crop the tails because in the "olden" days a cropped tail dog was considered a working farm dog, and the dog would then be considered "livestock" versus a "pet".

                              ** Please note this was a very long time ago, some facts may be a little mixed up due to my horrible, horrible memory.
                              The reason for this was taxation. Working farm dogs were not subject to taxes but pets were. Strange but true.

                              As for cropped ears, I think the perception of how painful it is is being grossly exaggerated. I'm a Dobe person and have owned numerous cropped Dobermans over the years. None of the responsible breeders that I got puppies from would sell uncropped. The reason for this is that if a puppy needed rehoming, cropped is much easier to rehome. It's considered to be for the sake of the dog and it's future. About 50% of Dobermans sold (many by BYBs) do not remain in their original home due to buyers not really being prepared for their high drives and need for training and exercise. The Doberman rescues will verify that the uncropped dogs stay longer and the cropped dogs get rehomed much faster.

                              My personal experience with posting and caring for cropped ears has been pretty easy. The ears are sensitive until the edges are healed (about 10 days). They are taped to a cup which doesn't seem to bother them or stop them from being very playful. You can put a little sock "hat" over the whole thing to keep them from scratching or banging them. Once you start taping they act like the posts aren't there. You have to learn how to tape and you have to remove the tape with adhesive remover so as not to irritate the ears.

                              It's a matter of preferrence but for me nothing beats the expression and nobility of a Doberman head with a beautiful crop.

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by wendy View Post
                                you do? I hate the look and feel of the scar tissue on the chopped-off ears, and watching puppies suffer for months with the surgery/healing/and taping I would have to say that ear cropping is out right abuse and no one should have the right to inflict that on an animal. Dobes look really good in their natural ears, and great danes especially look weird when cropped but gorgeous in their natural ears. Tail docking at a very young age is a more iffy situation, but why do it? I like to see wagging tails. Don't you?

                                If you want an animal with pointy ears and no tail just breed for it. There was a study where they transferred natural bobbed tail into the boxer breed by out-crossing to natural bobbed tail corgis then selecting for bobbed tail boxers, in only a few generations they had naturally tailless dogs that looked and acted just like boxers.

                                Dewclaws- I've owned quite a few dogs with their dewclaws and they use them. To hold things, to grip the ground on sharp turns. Chopping them off for no good reason is cruel.
                                And let's not even get into cat declawing. Utter cruelty.

                                All of these atrocities have been banned in many countries for some years. Why not in the U.S.?
                                Bolded mine: Really? Go through litters and generations of pups until you have some with the characteristics you want? Way to contribute to overpopulation.

                                Other than that, I agree with a lot of your post, except dewclaws. I can see where some working breeds might need them, but for your average house dog, who climbs around on claw-snagging carpeted stairs and furniture (mine are allowed on certain pieces), thumbs are a potentially painful nuisance. Mine have them because I adopted them as adults, and theirs are smallish.

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Scar tissue?

                                  None of my Dobermans have had any scar tissue on their ears. None have shown any sign of suffering from having their ears posted. No crying, wimpering or resisting being taped. Finished taping and off to the races.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by wendy View Post
                                    you do? I hate the look and feel of the scar tissue on the chopped-off ears, and watching puppies suffer for months with the surgery/healing/and taping I would have to say that ear cropping is out right abuse and no one should have the right to inflict that on an animal. Dobes look really good in their natural ears, and great danes especially look weird when cropped but gorgeous in their natural ears. Tail docking at a very young age is a more iffy situation, but why do it? I like to see wagging tails. Don't you?

                                    If you want an animal with pointy ears and no tail just breed for it. There was a study where they transferred natural bobbed tail into the boxer breed by out-crossing to natural bobbed tail corgis then selecting for bobbed tail boxers, in only a few generations they had naturally tailless dogs that looked and acted just like boxers.

                                    Dewclaws- I've owned quite a few dogs with their dewclaws and they use them. To hold things, to grip the ground on sharp turns. Chopping them off for no good reason is cruel.
                                    And let's not even get into cat declawing. Utter cruelty.

                                    All of these atrocities have been banned in many countries for some years. Why not in the U.S.?
                                    Have you ever actually been around a recently cropped puppy? It's not 'months of suffering'. They might be a touch uncomfortable at first, but quickly forget about it. They really don't seem to mind the taping routine. That said, if I got a cropped pup I would want the breeder to keep the puppy untill the ears were done b/c I'm a horrible ear taper Luckily my favorite breeds are non cropped ones, but I would crop if I got a dane or doberman

                                    I'd like you to say dewclaw removal is for 'no good reason' when you see the amount of blood and pain it causes if one rips off My shelter dog does have nice dewclaws, but loose ones are just awful. I'm fine with them getting taken off at a few days old, it's a lot easier then having to amputate as an adult.

                                    As for your personal opinion on the look of a cropped/docked dog, it's just that. An opinion. I like the look of a cropped and docked dog, that doesn't make me a bad dog person.

                                    The one thing I absolutely agree with you on is declawing. It is horrendously painful for the cat and changes the way they walk. It's not just a claw that's being removed, it's the first knuckle on every toe. A cat with a a missing tail, ear, eye, or even leg is 100X better off than a cat who is declawed IMO.
                                    .

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      I have no problem at all with ear cropping, tail docking or dew claw removal. I just got my 4th Doberman and none have ever had any problems with ear cropping aftercare nor do they seem to be at all bothered by the bandages after. The whole litter is back to wrestling & romping very soon and adapt to their bandages.
                                      After the first or second ear posting they hardly care about that either. My current puppy (12 weeks old) sleeps through me taping his ear posts up!

                                      So no I don't think it's unethical or anything close to abuse. JMO.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Originally posted by MrWinston View Post
                                        None of my Dobermans have had any scar tissue on their ears. None have shown any sign of suffering from having their ears posted. No crying, wimpering or resisting being taped. Finished taping and off to the races.
                                        Same here!

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by wendy View Post
                                          you do? I hate the look and feel of the scar tissue on the chopped-off ears, and watching puppies suffer for months with the surgery/healing/and taping I would have to say that ear cropping is out right abuse and no one should have the right to inflict that on an animal.
                                          Oh come on now! My dogs (all four of them) did not have any scar tissue and their ears certainly were not "chopped-off"; they had beautiful elegant cropped ears that fit their head.

                                          Does this look like scar tissue on chopped off ears?
                                          http://bobcatmorgans.com/rain.html

                                          As I posted before my 12 week old puppy sleeps though his ear posting so I hardly think he is "suffering for months".

                                          Comment

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