An Ear Posting Issue - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-13-2020, 10:24 AM Thread Starter
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An Ear Posting Issue

Hey all! Norah is my first Doberman puppy, and I’m just in love with her. After much deliberation, my husband and I opted to have her ears cropped and forego the posting process. I can honestly say that before we started looking for a pup, we had no idea that the typical Doberman appearance was the work of surgery! That was a surprise.

Anyway, our vet cropped Norah’s ears at 12 weeks and said we shouldn’t do any posting until she was all healed up. Two weeks later he removed her stitches, and then said to let her heal some more. Two weeks later, (she’s now 16 weeks old) we posted for the first time. One week later, I smelled a foul smell and saw she was getting some sores, so I took everything down to clean and dry out. It’s been almost a week. I’m devastated. Everything I’ve read seems to suggest her ears won’t stand. I feel awful if we put her through cropping for no reason. Is there any chance her ears will stand? She still has small scabs so I’m afraid to post. I’d appreciate any advice/guidance.
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-13-2020, 11:08 AM
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She's still fairly young, so you've got a good chance they will--you may have to post a little longer than is typical. That depends on the shape of her crop, but usually a dog will need to be posted at least until they have finished teething--so until they are 6 months old. But many dogs may need to be posted longer; it depends on the individual dog.

It sounds like you posted them and just left them in that bandaging? You should only leave ears posted for 3 or 4 days at a time, take them down, clean them out, let them air dry for 30 minutes or so (maximum) and then post them back up again. If they get wet or unusually dirty, if the post pops out of the bottom of the ear, or if they get smelly like your pup's did, you should take them down right away, clean them up and evaluate them for signs of infection or irritation before you put them back up again.

You are correct that they should not be posted if there are any scabs, raw areas or irritated skin that tape or the post will go across. Did she have to get antibiotics to deal with an infection?

There are a few tutorials here on posting with step-by-step pictures which should help you out.

One about posting--this is the method a lot of us use; we recommend it as being the easiest method that will give you good results.:
https://www.dobermantalk.com/ear-cro...acker-rod.html

This method is pretty much the same, except it leaves out the zip ties and the double sided tape when you are preparing the post. With show cropped ears, which are very long, zip ties help, but they aren't necessarily needed, depending on the dog's crop. DON'T use vet wrap, however. It is very easy to get it too tight if you're not used to using it, and it tends to shrink if it gets wet, so it can really harm your dog's ears by cutting off the circulation to the ear tips. The tips may even die because of lack of blood flow. Tape her ears at the bottom, the middle and the tip (the post should be longer than her ears are, and you should tape the entire tip to the post) to make them secure instead.
https://www.dobermantalk.com/ear-cro...my-method.html

Here's another about removing the posts gently:
https://www.dobermantalk.com/ear-cro...ear-posts.html


If you can post pictures of her head and crop, both from the side and the front, we should be able to tell you a little more about how to handle her ears. And if you tell us about where you live, there may be a dobe member nearby you can contact to get some in person help. A little hands-on help can go a lot further than an explanation over the internet.

We need to see pictures of your puppy anyway. We Love Dobe pictures here!!

Welcome to DT from Colorado!!

Last edited by melbrod; 05-13-2020 at 11:17 AM.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-13-2020, 11:28 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for all of that information! Norah has a long crop. I will try to post some photos, but she never sits still unless she’s sleeping 😌 One thing I noticed is that when the vet posted her ears, he didn’t clean them at all first. He’s a mobile vet and has a good reputation, but I think this must have been an oversight, because he just immediately went about demonstrating the posting method he recommends. So if you can imagine, the first time I changed those posts, the wax buildup was insane. I think that was what was causing the foul smell.

I had to change her posts every three days and sometimes more, and once three times in the same day, because she is really good at shaking them out. I’m probably not securing the posts well enough, but I’m scared of doing things too tight.

When I texted the vet about taking her ears down because of the smell and sores, he didn’t recommend an antibiotic based on the photos I sent him. So I cleaned them with apple cider vinegar and some colloidal silver to kill any potential infection. She seems to be healing fine since, and doesn’t show signs of discomfort.

I am located near Prescott, Arizona.

Thank you again! I appreciate all of your wisdom!
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-13-2020, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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How do you share photos here on the forum?
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-13-2020, 12:02 PM
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It's easiest to use an on-line photo host like Flickr or Imgur. We have really good tutorial about using Flickr:
https://www.dobermantalk.com/new-mem...ng-flickr.html

Posts popping out of ears is a very common problem that people new to the whole taping business have. Dobebug here wrote a good post about it somewhere--I'll see if I can find it.

Here we go:

You are back-taping the posts so the post is covered with Zonas (or Sport Tape) both by Johnson and Johnson--with the sticky side out? Make sure the post material (backer rod or pipe insulation) is small enough to go all the way to the bottom of the ear canal. Use a little bit of cotton to pad the very end of the post (and use scissors to taper it to a blunt point) and when you put it in the ear twist it a little while you are pushing down on the post and pulling up on the ear.

Have several strips of tape pre cut that will wrap around the base of the. ear. Once you have pushed the post all the way down into the ear canal (you can't push it too far--the ear canal take a right angle turn before it gets to the ear drum), press the taped post to the ear. While still holding it in place start your first wrap of tape as far down on the post as you can--you will then angle it up toward the skull wrapping it around and pressing down the little flap of skin where the ear attaches to the head. Wrap the tape around the ear and use one finger to press the back of the ear TOWARD the front of the ear--you can see that this reduces the gap between the front and back of the ear and generally prevents a dog from shaking or scratching and allowing the post to pop out of the ear canal. Bring the tape around and down to meet the spot where you started taping.

That's the first wrap. Put two or three more wraps on this way--each on will be a little higher than the first. When you have the base securely taped this way you can then just loosely wrap the rest of the ear in tape. Make sure your posts are long enough to extend beyond the tip of the ear so that the tip is securely taped. Then use your hand to 'scrunch' the tape so that it firmly holds the post in place. Brace or not--I don't brace puppies after the first few times they are posted. Some people always use a brace--your choice but if you brace remember it should be as close to the top of the head a possible.

And finally while you are posting ears you really want them to tip out at 10 x 2 (like clock hands) This will prevent pockets for the most part.

If you have any question about what I'm describing--either I or one of the many people
who have posted ears like this will try to clarify.

Good luck.

dobebug


This picture may help you see what she is describing when she is talking about taping the bottom part of the ear:


Sometimes the post will pop out if you are using backer rod that is too big. 3/8" diameter rather than 1/2" may be better on a younger puppy.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 07:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you again for all of your help! As of today, I reposted her ears. I used the link you sent me (such an informative tutorial!) as a guide, but used tampons since that is what I had originally bought for the posting. She hasn’t shaken them out yet, fingers crossed! I am just really worried that I will go through all this effort and her ears won’t stand. Do you know of anyone who’s gone through this and has had success? My pup’s birthday is January 7th, so she’s over 4 months old starting the posting process.

I am attempting to use Flickr from my phone and I don’t see the same options as on the tutorial you provided, but here are links to some photos!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/dateposted/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advasko View Post
Thank you again for all of your help! As of today, I reposted her ears. I used the link you sent me (such an informative tutorial!) as a guide, but used tampons since that is what I had originally bought for the posting. She hasnít shaken them out yet, fingers crossed! I am just really worried that I will go through all this effort and her ears wonít stand. Do you know of anyone whoís gone through this and has had success? My pupís birthday is January 7th, so sheís over 4 months old starting the posting process.

I am attempting to use Flickr from my phone and I donít see the same options as on the tutorial you provided, but here are links to some photos!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/dateposted/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream
See what happens after the first couple of postings. I have helped people learn how to post puppies and some got slow starts and not so good information about how to do it but I would think that a puppy who have healed ears so that you can actually post them (be careful of what looks like a couple of rub spots or scabs on the inside of that cropped ear--you might wait until those were healed too.

But I've definitely posted ears for people at four months or more and they stood--sometimes it takes a little longer than if the puppy was cropped at 8 weeks and was able to start the posting at around three weeks for healing of the ear edge, suture removal and further healing of any scab (which generally means that the posting itself started anywhere from 11 or 12 weeks (12 weeks is about 3 months) but sometimes because of scabs not healed posting started later.

Personally I don't much like posting with tampons--you are actually using the cardboard applicator and it's very stiff--less comfortable for the puppy and sometimes the two pieces of the applicator slide together and makes the ear sag on the post which can cause pockets--so make sure if you are posting with tampon tubes you tape the two sections so they can't slide.

Good luck--this is really a situation where practice makes perfect--and it gets easier as you go along and the puppy learns what he should be doing while you post.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 07:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advasko View Post
Thank you again for all of your help! As of today, I reposted her ears. I used the link you sent me (such an informative tutorial!) as a guide, but used tampons since that is what I had originally bought for the posting. She hasnít shaken them out yet, fingers crossed! I am just really worried that I will go through all this effort and her ears wonít stand. Do you know of anyone whoís gone through this and has had success? My pupís birthday is January 7th, so sheís over 4 months old starting the posting process.

I am attempting to use Flickr from my phone and I donít see the same options as on the tutorial you provided, but here are links to some photos!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/dateposted/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream
Norahís Long Crop by Ashley Vasko, on Flickr

Norah Pup by Ashley Vasko, on Flickr


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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the encouragement! Those photos were taken almost a week ago. As of today, she had no scans and was healed up.

I actually went to Lowe’s to get backer rod, but they only had one size and it was 3/4”... way too big. I also went to Walgreens, CVS and Kroger in search of Zonas Tape, but none had it, so I’m currently using paper tape. Do you have any advice about where to buy Zonas and backer rod? I don’t like buying things online if I can help it.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 10:06 PM
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You can use Johnson and Johnson's Sports Tape (AKA Coaches Tape) Don't use paper tape. Most folks I've known say they have to order the Zonas tape online, but Sports Tape is usually readily available at places like Walgreens or Walmart. And I've been told it is basically the same thing.

You could also use foam pipe insulation instead of backer rod, cut into pieces lengthwise--

A how-to from a post by Dobebug:

Quote:
Originally Posted by dobebug View Post
(For the record--I actually use pipe insulation for posts--it's the closed cell foam that goes around water pipes to protect them from very cold weather--they come sized for the outside diameter of the pipe they are supposed to go over. I cut lengths--appropriate for the ears of the puppy I'm posting--and then cut lengths from the round piece to make a post--those I taper, squeeze the edges together and tape tightly--and go back and tape them one more time with the sticky side out--put a small cotton pad at the tapered bottom bottom. Makes a similar post to a backer rod post but it's stiffer and you don't have to stiffen it with duct tape.)
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Last edited by melbrod; 05-19-2020 at 10:09 PM.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 12:53 PM Thread Starter
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Okay, so yesterday I posted her ears. They stayed in for the rest of the day and through the night! Yay! But then this morning, after some violent shaking, the bottom of both posts popped out. I gently removed both posts, cleaned, and posted again. I’ve included some photos of my posting job. Not pretty, but I’m new to this! I used athletic tape instead of paper tape this time. I’m still using the tampons, but only because I live 30 minutes from any stores and haven’t made it into town yet. When I go into town later, I will look for either backer rod or foam pipe insulation. While reposting, I noticed that deep inside her ear, where the bottom of the post sits, they were red and raw. Not bleeding or open, but angry looking. I’m guessing this is from her shaking so hard? She was wincing when I was cleaning there and putting in the Cotton ball with the medicated powder. What to do?

She hates the posts so much, I almost wonder if it’s normal. Every photo and video I see of other pups getting posted, they seem compliant and neutral. My Norah acts like she hates life during and after. She won’t come to me when I call her. She doesn’t eat as much. She just seems irritated or depressed. Is this normal?

Sorry for all the questions, but I do appreciate your experience so much! Thanks!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/dateposted/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...in/photostream

Last edited by Advasko; 05-20-2020 at 12:56 PM. Reason: Included Additional Info
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:04 PM
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Your posting job looks decent. I personally don't feel like a bridge is necessary, but that is personal preference. If you do use a bridge put it low down on her ears next to her head rather than halfway up her ears. Make sure the bridge does not actually pull her ears past vertical toward each other. It's best if her ears are allowed to tip out slightly--11 and 1 o'clock or even 10 and 2 o'clock. \_/

About the angry spot--IF it is not raw and oozy at all, just reddened and sore looking, you could try a little cotton, teased out in a thin layer, as a padding right over that area, so the post isn't actually sticking to her skin there. But only for a day or so. If it doesn't show signs of getting better, you need to air out the spot until the redness goes away. But if her skin is oozing or actually "open", so to speak, you shouldn't be posting.

She should adjust to getting posted. Try feeding her treats regularly as you post her. You don't have to do it all in one sitting either.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:42 PM
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I think the redness you are seeing inside the ear toward the bottom is because the tampon tube is too big to go all the way down in the ear--that's why she's shaking her head and when the tube moves inside it rubs--makes it feel even worse.

That's my basic problem with using tampon tubes--even the 'small' size would probably be too big.

I've found that the smaller hardware stores (like the Ace line for one) tend often to have better supplies of some things than the big companies like Lowes or Home Depot--and though I love both for a variety of stuff I can get different sizes of both pipe insulation at a relatively tiny Ace Hardware in a local neighborhood and when I was living in Vermont in outskirts of Plymouth there was a an Ace that every size imaginable of both the pipe insulation and the backing rod--which is know in some places as caulking rod.

The bottom line is that I use pipe insulation because I can cut it with scissors to a very small diameter (after I've taped it) for small puppy ears and can cut and shape it for bigger puppy ears as well. You aren't relying on the pipe insulation for the final diameter of the post and I actually cut the pieces so that first I have a rectangle of the proper length and then I divide the long way of that rectangle into two--slightly wedge shaped pieces. I round the bottom (the narrow end of the wedge) so it will when taped slip easily into the puppy's ear canal. It needs to go all the way down into the ear and for an ear cropped the way your puppy's ear is after I put the two or three tape strips at the very bottom I use one length of tape the rest of the way up--I don't for many types of crops do just the bottom, middle and top wrap. That works for some crops but not for all.

And you need to try to start that very first wrap of tape down further on the post and pull up firmly on the ear and when you start to wrap the tape around the the top of the ear and down press the back of the ear with a finger to close the space between the front and back as you stick the tape down to meet where you started. I know it sounds impossible but it'll basically narrow that gap enough that it becomes very difficult for a puppy to shake or rub the post enough to push it out of the ear canal IF the post itself is all the way down to the bottom of the canal.

Generally if you get it right--post all the way down to the bottom of the ear canal and the very first two wraps of tape at the bottom properly placed a puppy might shake their a few times but another really yummy treat mostly makes them forget about the ears because that post isn't moving around in the base.

But the posting basically looks correct and keeping the puppy happy during the process will do a lot for her, treats help and getting the post properly in the ear so it doesn't bug her all the time (it's like having to live with a rock in your shoe--it feels so good when you take it out) help more than anything else. Most puppies get used to it--the first few postings aren't much fun for anyone. And yes, I've posted puppy's who hated the whole process but are still thrilled to see me because the memory of the torture evidently fades only the memory of the treats remains.

Good luck--if you find a place that has smaller backing rod and you use that (3/8 is the size you want now and I know people who have used that the entire length of time the dog is posted) things should get easier.

I don't brace puppies after the first couple of postings--it looks like she has enough control of her ears that I'd probably not use a brace but as Mel said in her post--if you are going to use a brace it should be right down at the top of her head.

Keep showing us picture and keep us posted (a bad joke, I apologize)...

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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 02:21 PM
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Oh yeah--I echo what Bug said about how you should tape at the bottom of your pup's ears--I meant to mention that, but the phone rang, so I finished the sentence I was on, clicked on Enter and never came back.

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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 04:00 PM
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Donít get discouraged with your posting.
Healthy ears is always a plus.
Itís new to you and trust me after you have posted 10-20 times you will be able to do this while watching TV.
Sometimes it can be a two person job if your puppy is a wiggles a lot.
After time the dogs get used to the posting.
So chin up ...your doing great.
Just be matter of fact about it with your puppy and lots of treats when the job is complete.
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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 02:18 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both so much for those insights! What you said about the tampon being too big for her ear canal makes perfect sense to me. Her posts from yesterday stayed in well enough, but today I noticed a spot of blood coming through from the inside, so I took everything down. The spot that was rubbed raw yesterday opened and bled. So now she needs to heal up. I found the 3/8” backer rod at Home Depot yesterday (yay!) so after she heals up, I will post with that. I will pad the bottom of those posts with some small gauze strips, and not use the bridge. I will use 2 or 3 strips of tape around the base of the ear, going lower on the backside of the ear. Then I will wrap with tape from the base to the tip. Does that sound right?
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 02:50 PM
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Stupid me put that picture showing proper taping in twice--I really wasn't trying to be snotty by repeating directions as if you weren't paying attention the first time--I just forgot I had put it up already.

Sounds like you're on the right track. It's just awkward at first.
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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 06:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advasko View Post
Thank you both so much for those insights! What you said about the tampon being too big for her ear canal makes perfect sense to me. Her posts from yesterday stayed in well enough, but today I noticed a spot of blood coming through from the inside, so I took everything down. The spot that was rubbed raw yesterday opened and bled. So now she needs to heal up. I found the 3/8Ē backer rod at Home Depot yesterday (yay!) so after she heals up, I will post with that. I will pad the bottom of those posts with some small gauze strips, and not use the bridge. I will use 2 or 3 strips of tape around the base of the ear, going lower on the backside of the ear. Then I will wrap with tape from the base to the tip. Does that sound right?
Hi Advasko,

Yes it sounds right but don't use gauze to to put the pad in the bottom--the lines of fabric that criss cross gauze can be an irritant. Use plain old cotton and I usually buy a bag of cotton balls (which lasts about 10 years and would last longer if I weren't taping other people's puppy ears as well as my own--but make sure you are getting "cotton"-real cotton--some of the cotton balls are actually made out of polypropolene and accidentally bought a bag of those years ago and finally threw them out about 5 years ago.

It doesn't take much--just a little pad and I hold it in place with a short piece of tape to hold it in place at the very bottom of the post. And I think you had some medicated powder to put on it? Good, do that too.

Mel is going to read this post and laugh at all the dangling participles and missing punctuation but I'm trying not to let the stuff I meant to make for dinner last night but couldn't, burn tonight, because I'm in here sending e-mails about this and that.

Yeah, let that spot heal up--I think with the smaller backing rod you'll not be having that problem again. If the other ear doesn't have any rub places you can post a single ear--I do it all the time and it drives one of my favorite breeders crazy--but she grits her teeth and doesn't yell at me too much when I tell people to do that if they have to leave an ear untaped because of scabs because I've been taping ears longer than she's been breeder.

Good luck and all that--you're on the right track.

dobebug
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-23-2020, 12:31 AM
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Hope you found how to find zonas tape - I always order mine on Amazon... a box of 12 is usually enough. Also, some black goo in the base of the ear smeared over the post when you take them out is not unusual. Just clean the ears out and repost.

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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-23-2020, 07:37 AM
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Is it me ? But it looks like in the first Picture on post 11 that at the base of the ear , it to me looks like Advasko has it folded forward and not to the back ? it may be the way 'm looking at it - be 'n' I'm not right : ))
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post #21 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-23-2020, 07:59 AM
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Is it me ? But it looks like in the first Picture on post 11 that at the base of the ear , it to me looks like Advasko has it folded forward and not to the back ? it may be the way 'm looking at it - be 'n' I'm not right : ))
It looks that way to me too! Be sure your tape goes in the direction which makes the natural fold gold back on itself. I know I emphasized this in the ear tutorial that I made here on DT.
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post #22 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-23-2020, 08:14 AM
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It looks that way to me too! Be sure your tape goes in the direction which makes the natural fold gold back on itself. I know I emphasized this in the ear tutorial that I made here on DT.
Greenie - Look at the 3rd picture down , they do have it pulled forward , to me
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post #23 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-27-2020, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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Hey all, I reposted today. I have actually now reposted 3 times today. I’m not sure if I’m properly understanding which direction to post in. I read what you have all said about the ear fold going in on itself, but It seems to me that I’m going to have to work against one side of the ear’s fold or the other? So my question is this: should I be taping from the base of the post and then going UP (between the ears) first, or should I be going DOWN toward the base of the ear first? I first did it going UP today, and it just seemed really flimsy. Norah shook it out in a matter of minutes. So I did everything again, this time going down and around and it seemed to hold better. She took about an hour to get that one out. So I just did it again. Here is another photo! Any guidance offered is sincerely appreciated!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/188431...n/dateposted/#

P.S. I am using 3/8” backer rod, wrapped twice in duct tape for stability. I then wrapped the post in athletic tape, sticky side out. I dusted the inside and outside of both ears with Gold Bond medicated powder, placed the 1/2 inch of exposed foam down as far as comfortably possible into the ear canal, stretched the ear up, and then wrapped in athletic tape from base of post to tip of ear.
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post #24 of 24 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 11:04 AM
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You should start with the tape on the post and go up toward the top of the head, and then back around the bottom of the ear, on both ears. (So on one you will be taping clockwise and on the other counterclockwise.) The fold we are talking about is the one where the ear meets the top of the head (here labeled as the area where pockets form. See how it curls backwards right there on the forward edge?)



Her ears will be able to move around, but in general when she is moderately alert, they should rest in the 10 and 2, or 11 and 1 position. They should not point inward.

Like this, \_/

Not /_\ or even |_|

For the bottom strip, make sure the tape is placed low on the post (as low as you can get it) and that the ear is pulled up snug along the post as you tape it. That should keep the bottom of the post in her ear. You might not be getting the post in deep enough--twist the post as you put it in while you pull straight up on the ear. Don't let go! Press the ear to the post and start taping at the bottom. Down as low on the post as you can get it, in and up toward the top of the head, as close to where the ear meets the head as you can get it. Then around to the back and outside of the ear, low across the bell and back to the post.

You really only need to tape the ears at the bottom, on the tip (make sure the tip is taped and not sticking out loose) and in the middle somewhere.
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