How can I tell if my dogs cropped ears are healed? - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-24-2020, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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How can I tell if my dogs cropped ears are healed?

My baby got his ears cropped May 12. Of course his ears have been posted since. I took him yesterday to his weekly retapping. The vet told me he didn’t need retapping anymore but his right ear keeps falling inward to the left & I know for sure that is not right. I took him baxk today to get them retapped but I’m starting to worry if his ear healed that way or maybe I’m being paranoid. It’s been about 6 weeks since his surgery . The crazy thing is on June 7th I took his bandages off myself & his ears were standing up perfect , I could tell they were still fresh tho. But it’s been 2 weeks since then & now his ears are leaning like they are not close to healing. If anyone could give me some advice , it would be much appreciated it.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 12:08 AM
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Hi Bibi! And welcome from the Pacific NW.

You should take over posting your pup's ears yourself. Most dogs are posted at least through teething. My guess is that your boy has a long was to go.

For example, my current youngest was cropped 8 weeks. We did not begin posting until the ears were completely healed. I posted his ears until I was completely satisfied with their strength and appearance. He had just turned 8 months old. My Dobes have always been "cropped and docked"and my most recent experience is very typical of my past ones. He has an average show crop.

His ears look great. Of course, all dogs are different.

If you go to the forum section of this site, you will find wonderful advice on how to post ears.

Here is a starting point. It is a visual tutorial by member greenkouki and is, IMO, the best out there:

Also... An ear or ears tipping inward is usually a sign of "pocket" formation. It is a correctable situation that needs to be addressed. Here is a thread that deals with pockets:

Finally... And this is just my opinion. At the risk of sounding harsh, your vet is giving you bad advice and you should not be having them post your baby's ears.

I am sure others will respond to your thread.

In any case, it is really nice to have you here. You will find a lot of knowledge and support from the members.

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR
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Last edited by 4x4bike ped; 06-25-2020 at 12:15 AM.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 12:15 AM
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They should be "healed" already--in that he shouldn't have any open sores or scabs on his ears. He should have smooth healthy skin on the edges of his ears where they were cropped.

But it sounds to me like you are really talking about how you can tell when his ears have stiffened up enough to stand on their own for the rest of his life--in other words, when can you stop posting?

What method are you using? We have a good method here that a lot of us use:

If you can post pictures of your posting job from the front and the side of your pup's head, we can probably give you some hints if you need to change the way you are taping his ears.

A dobe's ears almost always have to be posted at least until he is done teething--say until he is about 6 months old. Some dobes have to be posted a lot longer--it depends on the shape and length of the dogs crop in addition to how thick the cartilage of his ears is naturally. It sounds like your baby is only about 4 months old? So you have a ways to go still.

If his ears are leaning in that likely means that he has developed pockets where his ears join the top of his head.

Pockets will make the tips of his ears slant inwards like this /_\ Those will need to be corrected before you can even think of stopping posting. Check out the tutorial above to get an idea of how you need to tape his ears to get rid of the pockets. And then ask questions here Because it isn't necessarily obvious how to post the first few times you try.

You really should learn to post his ears yourself. Most vets don't do a particularly good job posting ears. If his posts are only being changed once a week, that alone is a sign that he is not being posted correctly. And if the vet is telling you they don't need to be posted when your puppy is still too young, he is likely quite wrong (or your pup's crop is very short.) It's not that hard to learn how to post ears--and once you know how, you will be able to fix any problems that might show up, or fine tune the posting job immediately instead of waiting for your next appt.

The general procedure is to post his ears for 3-5 days (usually closer to three), then take them down, clean them up a little, let them dry out, and put them back up immediately. He should not be out of posts for more than about 30 minutes max. Resist the temptation to take them down at this point and leave them untaped while you wait to see if they will stand properly.

It is better to post for a few more weeks after you think his ears are completely done. You've put a lot of work and money into them so far--don't risk an eventual crop and flop by stopping too soon.

At some point, what you will do to see if his ears are "done" is to stop posting his ears one morning and keep an eagle eye on them. They should stand perfectly before you quit posting, and if there is ANY sign that they are starting to sag when he is alert and holding his ears upright, he will need to go back into posts right away for another few weeks. He is definitely not done if you are seeing his ears sag or tip inward--that will only get worse the longer he is out of posts, and at some point, you won't be able to correct them.

It looks like John beat me to it with his post above--I'm saying much the same thing he does--which means he's right
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Last edited by melbrod; 06-25-2020 at 12:24 AM.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-25-2020, 10:39 AM
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John and Melbrod beat me to a reply this time.

Good advice from both of them. And I echo Mel when I say that I think you are not really asking if his ears are healed but rather if his ears are (or when will they be) stiff enough and posted long enough for them to stand properly on their own.

Reread Mel's review of what happens when it comes to posting ears and what to look for.

I am presently posting ears on a just turned year old puppy--he was recently rehomed and my guess is that his prior owners stopped posting his ears way too soon. Now they are a right mess. And I'm at this point posting them every four days. They are looking better but we've got a long way to go before they actually are standing properly and I suspect that one ear will never stand as well as it would have if the posting been continued when he was many months younger.

Now he's stuck with me reposting him regularly and there isn't much that's harder to do than convince an older puppy who has been out of posts for weeks to months like this guy to leave the posts alone and stop trying to remove them. Puppies who have been posted from the times their ears were first healed to when they were really finished and standing (at six months or more generally) are infinitely easier.

So the bottom line is keep posting them and learn to do it yourself.

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