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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 04:52 PM Thread Starter
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cropping

What are the benefits to cropping the ears and docking the tail? Why keep them? Is it for looks or medical reasons?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 05:14 PM
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These days, with rare exceptions, docking and cropping are cosmetic. Dobermans are a traditionally docked and cropped breed, so a lot of people still like the look.

Some people say that cropped ears are healthier, and have fewer infections since they stand up, and don't trap air and moisture in the ear canal and are less likely to be injured. I say I have a GSD with naturally upright ears who, at age six, has had so many ear infections that I've lost count. The only dog I've had who damaged and ear was an ACD mix who managed to somehow break the cartilage in one of her small, naturally upright ears.


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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 05:31 PM
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The Doberman Standard describes a dog with cropped ears and a docked tail. You can find all sorts of things claimed as health benefits to explain why cropped ears and docked tails but the bottom line is that the Standard which describes the ideal dog as cropped and docked is the ONLY reason for doing it.

However--when I went to a dog show 60 years ago and the dogs who came into the ring were stunning black and rust and red and rust sleek, beautiful dogs with cropped ears and docked tails I knew nothing except I thought they were perhaps the most beautiful dogs I'd ever seen.

I know people who prefer the softer looking dogs with uncropped ears and a few who prefer undocked tails. I really want the dog that I first saw all those summers ago shining in the sun, tails up and ears up looking around their world and daring anyone to enter any part of it without their permission.

I'm obviously no purist--anyone who wants an uncropped dog should be able to have what they want--and if they want a dog with a long tail--the should have that too.

All my dogs from the very first in 1959 to the one in my kitchen (trying to find a cool spot on the floor) have been docked and cropped and I love the look even though I know that there is no particular health benefit to cropping or docking.

If you actually go back in the history of the dog (not just the history of the Doberman) you'll find that in many countries dogs were docked to designate them at a glance as a working dog--working dogs were not taxed. The Doberman was definitely developed as a working breed.

The argument for cropping is varied--if the dog is for personal protection--it's unlikely that a person with bad intent could get hold of a cropped ear and cause enough pain to stop the dog. Also prick eared dogs are now and were long ago seen as more fierce looking.

And very long ago (I can't remember which countries this was from) it was thought that removing ears and tails from dogs would prevent the dog from contracting rabies.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 07:34 PM
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It's not done for medical reasons but rather because the breed standard is cropped and docked. I've had both, never had ear infection problems.
Personally I prefer C/D but my last Dobe was a rescue and my request was a dog that fit my needs regardless of color, sex or ears. I ended up with my first male dog with docked tail but natural ears. And he w a perfect fit!
My current girl is docked but with natural ears. I live in Central America and wasn't confident I could find a GOOD vet for her ears. Much prefer natural ears to a botched crop!
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 07:59 PM
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I have read the rationale that because dobes have not been bred considering a strong tail structure to be important (they have traditionally been a docked breed), their tails are weaker and can be injured more easily. Injury of the tail in an adult dog often requires amputation because the injury will recur, and amputation in an adult dog is much more painful and can take a long time to heal.

So tails are docked routinely when a puppy is just a couple of days old.

I don't know how true that is or if it is just an excuse.....
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-24-2018, 09:47 PM
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I ws going to write something similar to what melbrod posted, but didn't get around to it.
I would have no problem with a natural eared dog. Although probably any breeder that I would get a puppy would crop the pup early on. From an aesthetic POV, I would always prefer a cropped Doberman.

Tails? No way ould I want a natural, non-docked tail. Too many potential risks. The same goes for dew claws.

Now I am sure that many will disagree with me, but that is my opinion.

John
Portland OR
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 09:05 AM
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That's it right there - they are a 'Cropped and Docked' breed.

"Lots of people talk to animals...Not very many listen, though...That's the problem. " ~ The Tao of Pooh
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 01:55 PM
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How very interesting!! Thank you for sharing!!!!!!!!!!!!! kat (to me, uncropped ears on a dobie makes them look like a dashound with loooong legs!! lol NO offense to natural ear lovers!!)
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 02:06 PM
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How very interesting!! Thank you for sharing!!!!!!!!!!!!! kat (to me, uncropped ears on a dobie makes them look like a dashound with loooong legs!! lol NO offense to natural ear lovers!!)
I've actually gotten that response to some of the photos I posted on social media when my dog was a little pup - and he kind of did (if it was only a photo of his head). Throughout the time I've had him, he's been mistaken for a number of breeds - rotty, black/tan coonhound, great dane(?), even a lab mix (ugh). Many people still instantly recognize him as a dobie though, and I do get lots of comments on him being "pretty".

It all comes down to preference. Personally, if I was going to get another dobe from a breeder, I would go cropped/docked just because I don't want to deal with another breeder that does not handle that for me. It's possible to find a good breeder that will leave a pup uncropped, though pretty uncommon, especially in the US. I have kinda fallen in love with Radar's big ol' floppy ears though - it really compliments his goofball personality. However, if I was looking to rescue, I would go for either, depending more on the personality of the dog.

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys thank you for the swift replies!! I love the softer look of the dogs, I have a pitbull as well and refused to get his ears cropped and hes a gorgeous pup with big floppy ears. I was not sure if I needed to get my Dobie cropped or if it is just cosmetic. I love the look of floppy ears. The tail worries me though if it is a fragile tail will they really need it cropped. It is like a boxer I guess, I have never seen one with a tail.
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 02:28 PM
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Hi guys thank you for the swift replies!! I love the softer look of the dogs, I have a pitbull as well and refused to get his ears cropped and hes a gorgeous pup with big floppy ears. I was not sure if I needed to get my Dobie cropped or if it is just cosmetic. I love the look of floppy ears. The tail worries me though if it is a fragile tail will they really need it cropped. It is like a boxer I guess, I have never seen one with a tail.
The real issue with your decision is...if you want a puppy with natural ears, it is VERY hard to find a quality breeder, and you really, really don't want to buy from a poor quality breeder. In this country, quality puppies are cropped and docked. There are almost NO good breeders that don't do that. There are a few...that's a FEW, in the whole country. Most of the time, if you see a breeder that doesn't, it's a HUGE red flag that you're buying from a poor quality breeder. And when it comes down to it, the quality of the breeder and the quality of the puppy is FAR more important than what the ears and tail look like.

For a first time owner, I really feel you are best off with a breeder that is reasonably local to you, who can support and help you, and is really ethical. So in your shoes, I wouldn't worry about the cropping issue, but rather would focus on making sure you know how to identify quality breeders.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-25-2018, 02:31 PM
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IMO
My first Doberman had natural ears and I loved them.....so soft.....blowing in the breeze.
Hoss is cropped......but was already cropped when I chose to purchase him.........both to me have a great look.
The dock and claw .........claws get caught on things .....boom vet bills.....tails get broken.....boom vet bill.......best to get done when they are young and will never even remember the procedure.

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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-26-2018, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
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That is very true. If it is recommended for the breed I would definitely go with it. I had a doberman as a young child and his ears and tails were cropped as well. I always do research before making a commitment to any animal I bring into my family. I think I would do cropped just because it seems like there a less problems with cropped than un cropped.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-08-2018, 05:10 PM
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I’ve heard the reasons pro and con, but in the end it all comes down to personal choice. I personally wanted a C/D Dobie. The breeder I went through had arrangements with one of the best cropping surgeons around (personal opinion). What I got was a beautiful C/D girl and exactly what I wanted.
The physically typical specimen of a Doberman is what I wanted. I would say you be the judge, but it was my preference, and only my opinion mattered.
Either way, you can’t go wrong.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-09-2018, 10:05 AM
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Yo Joe..great to hear from ya.....good looking pup !

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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 07:52 PM
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Yo Joe..great to hear from ya.....good looking pup !
She’s doing really well. Very happy she’s in my life.
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