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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are these all just different terms for the same thing???

I met with a local vet for an ear cropping consult this week. Took in pics to show exactly what we wanted. Talked about the style of crop we wanted. Medium crop with NOT a lot of bell. Told him that I wanted the base of the ear "cleaned up" and showed him a couple of pictures showing him exactly what I meant by this, with the extra stitches that are involved with doing that. (At the time I didn't realize the area removed was called the tragus...came home and discovered that through more research.)

This particular vet we met with has been cropping doberman ears for 30+ years and said he had NEVER seen a crop done that way. He said he could see in the pic WHY it was done that way and agreed that it created a "cleaner" finished product, but wasn't quite sure WHAT had been removed and didn't feel comfortable attempting it with out some type of formal training. I appreciated his honesty very much. He was actually the coolest, nicest vet I have ever met! All around wonderful guy. BUT, we will not be using him for our ear crop and he was 100% okay with that, knowing he couldn't deliver exactly what we wanted.

Anyway, as we continue to search out the vet we will use, I just want to make sure that I am using the correct terminology when I make calls.

Now that I know that area is called the tragus, I have been asking about it specifically when I call. When I called the above mentioned vet, I asked the receptionist if the vet "cleans up and closes the bell" (didn't know how else to word it and didn't know at the time that the area removed was called the tragus). She replied, "Oh yes, he has been doing this for 30+ years. He does everything necessary to make a nice looking crop." Obviously not, and I drove 45 mins one way to find out because I didn't ask the right questions.

I called another vet today, asked to speak directly with the actual vet and asked specifically if he removes the tragus...his very smug reply, "Of course I do. You HAVE to remove it in order to crop an ear." I told him evidentally not and that alot of vets don't. His once again smug reply, "Then they have no idea what they are doing." Which he is probably right, just has a very rude tone. He is only 30 mins away, but charges $45 for a consult. Then charges $600-$650 for the crop, which seems pretty darn steep to me. When I mentioned that his price was significantly higher than others I had spoken to, he said, "Well then I guess you can go to those other people if you don't like my prices." Sheesh!! I just didn't appreciate his smug tone throughout our entire conversation, but he might be the only one close to me that does a good job.

My other options are 3 different vets I've been referred to. I know that 2 of them do remove the tragus. Pretty sure the 3rd one does to, based on pics they sent me, but need to call tomorrow to make sure. All 3 of which I have heard great things about and have seen pics of their work. All charge about $425. The problem is that one is 4 hours away. The other two are 7 hours away.

I suppose with the travel time involved to the "cheaper" vets, it all comes out in the wash if I use the more expensive local vet. I am waiting for his office to email me pics of his work. Then will make my decision.

Sorry for such a long post, but hopefully this info and any responses will help others to ask the right questions when searching for an ear cropping vet. I had read TONS of posts on here about ear cropping and kept seeing the terms "cleaning up the bell" and "closing the bell". But had to really dig deep after meeting with that first vet to figure out the area was called a tragus. Then a ton more searching about '"tragus" to figure out exactly what that was.

Thanks all!! This board has been a life saver in so many ways!
 

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I can't believe you got that many vets to actually send you pictures or speak with you on the phone.:)

But seriously, if you post your area and list the name of the vets in question, then others who know of them will be able to tell you what they know about them.
 

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Sirai Dobermans
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Post where you are and we can help you with recommended cropping vets in your area.

The 600-650 price you paid is slightly more than I have paid but a good crop is priceless and I don't think it's an unreasonable price.
 
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sufferin succotash
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Personally if you're having this much trouble with finding good cropping vets, I would leave them natural. I think cropping vets were recommended to you in another thread (??)

I would be upset with the breeder for not taking care of this for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, sheesh! I thought I knew what removing the tragus was, but maybe I don't. The smug replying vet who said, "oh course I remove the tragus" just sent me pics of crops he has done and the base does not appear cleaned up at all on any of the 3 dogs?? Not at all what I am looking for.

Here is a thread from March where corahowell posted pics of her pup Maverik's ears right after being cropped, asking if they looked okay. Kahluagrl also posted a pic of her pup that look very similar with stitches/staple going vertical from the base of the ear. I assumed from my research on here that this is what it looks like when the tragus is removed and "the bell is closed in".

http://www.dobermantalk.com/puppy-corner/65195-mavericks-ear-crop.html

Hello, I am new to doberman talk. I just got my puppy maverick's ears cropped on 3/5/12. the base of his ears looks a bit weird and I'm not sure how it's supposed to look at this point. It's only been 3 days since it was done. I just wanted to receive some opinions so I uploaded some pictures of them. Thanks.



This is how Kahlua came home, she had staples in her ears as well as stitches. The Vet was recommended here on DT.

ETA... we didn't start posting until a week or two later when the ears were all healed and the stitches/staples were removed.



Am I right? or am I just completely wrong on what I think removing the tragus is?? I have seen pics of adult dobes who's ears were done like this and this is the look I am going for with my girl.

Is it possible for the vet to remove the tragus and NOT do that vertical stitching/stapling? Just wondering why the vet I spoke to said he does remove it, but his finished ears don't look like they were done like the 2 above.

Personally if you're having this much trouble with finding good cropping vets, I would leave them natural. I think cropping vets were recommended to you in another thread (??)
Yes, you are right, a couple of vets were recommended to me. These are the ones I mentioned above that I will have to drive 4-7 hours to see. Which I am willing to do IF I have to. I just thought I would explore all possible local options first. I am not totally against leaving them natural either. We left or red female natural, which I personally love on the reds. But I really like a nice looikng crop on the black and rust dobies.

After MUCH research, I think I have narrowed it down to either Dr. Smith in Sherwood, Oregon or Dr. Pew in Orem, UT. Also considering a vet in Clarkston, Wa. Another DT member, Wylde, sent me pics done by them and her dogs ears look great. However, I contacted the vet and asked them to send me some more pics. They sent more, but they didn't look nearly as good as Wylde's. Wylde said hers were done a few years ago, so maybe a different vet now. Anyone else had experience with them? The clinic is Riverview Animal clinic in Clarkston, WA.

As far as the breeder not taking care of it, I will say this... We looked at a couple of other breeders before settling on the one we chose. Two of them said that they take care of the cropping for an additional fee, if the buyer wants it done. One even mentioned that she wants to know that her pups are being cropped by a good, experienced reputable vet and doesn't like leaving that part up to the buyer. She said that the few times that she did, they ended up with botched crops. She said she keeps the pup till ears are healed and does the first posting. I thought wow, how very responsible of her as a breeder. I asked her to send pics of some of her grown pups done by her "experienced vet". She didn't have any, so I contacted her vet directly and they sent me pics of 5 different dobies...OH MY GOODNESS!! Some of the worst looking ears I have seen! They looked like huge bat ears! So an FYI to others...even if your breeder offers to take care of ears, ask for pics first. If they don't have any, contact the vet they use.
 

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As before, my recommendation is Dr. Pew...seen his crops...he knows what he's doing! In my opinion, a 7-hour drive is nothing to ensure getting a good crop!

Jan
 

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Callie has a really cleaned up bell..




But, her bell was never stitched closed at the bottom.



I think there might be more than one method to get the type of bell you're looking for. Callie was done by a very reputable vet that was well recommended here (Dr. Fasth, in Colorado), and I couldn't be happier with the results. Her crop was $500- I would definitely pay $600-650 for something I have to stare at for the life of my dog. Anyhoo, just showing you a different crop procedure that gets the same results.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks longshot! Do you happen to have a straight on shot of Callie?

I agree and am willing to pay that much for a GOOD crop, but from the pics I just recieved from the vet that quoted me $650, he does not even do a good, clean crop.

Jan, thank you again for your opinion on Dr. Pew. I have heard great things about him. They only emailed me one pic. It is the same one on there website. Did anyone else on here use him and have any pics they'd like to share? :) Surprisingly, he is the cheapest out of about 6-7 vets I have looked into. $375 -$425, depending on weight. That is probably who we will go with. Not because he is cheapest, but because I've had several people recommend him. Again, just exploring all my options.

My husband's harrassing me as I type, asking if I've decided who I want to use yet because he will be the one doing the driving while I stay home with the kids :)

BTW, for the others who asked, I am in SW Idaho.
 

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Shes sitting a little crooked- but you can see that theres no disruption of the plane on the side of her head... nothing sticks out.

You could make a road trip out of it and head to Colorado- 11 hours or so? would be my ballpark. Dr. Fasth has been a Doberman breeder for longer than I've been alive. She really knows how to make their ears accentuate the head.

 

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Good luck. I know you now know this but for folks reading along... if you want to save the headache and worry this is why it's so important to just purchase a puppy from a reputable breeder who has all puppies ears cropped prior to them leaving for their new homes. Contact your local doberman club (or great dane even) for a referral to a good cropper in your area.
 

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Good luck. I know you now know this but for folks reading along... if you want to save the headache and worry this is why it's so important to just purchase a puppy from a reputable breeder who has all puppies ears cropped prior to them leaving for their new homes. Contact your local doberman club (or great dane even) for a referral to a good cropper in your area.
Thank you for the reminder!

If I could go back and kick myself in the head, I would ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks longshot! She is adorable :) We were tossing around the idea of making a family road trip out of it, but my kids are still in school. If we waited till summer, our puppy (still deciding on a name) would be 13 weeks and I don't want to wait that long. Plus we are caring for a couple of very challenging foster kids right now that make road trips not so much fun :(...so a family weekend trip is out right now too.

My husband is fine with making the trip. We just need to decide on which vet to use.

Good luck. I know you now know this but for folks reading along... if you want to save the headache and worry this is why it's so important to just purchase a puppy from a reputable breeder who has all puppies ears cropped prior to them leaving for their new homes. Contact your local doberman club (or great dane even) for a referral to a good cropper in your area.
I second this x100!!! I didn't really mind at the time because I knew there were a handful of vets in my area that do ear cropping, BUT what I didn't realize is that non of them do as good of a job as I would like :(...big fat headache indeed!

I love our little girl non the less and wouldn't change a thing, but definitely a hard lesson learned for next time.
 

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I don't know where in Idaho you are but if you haven't checked on Dr Rick Douglas at Newton Animal Hospital in Surrey BC. He does a lot of the show crops in Washington and Oregon on Dobes and does a good job gives you a cleaned out base and a nice shape.

I wouldn't get so wrapped up in asking about whether a vet does or doesn't remove the tragus--as long as they take a wedge out of the bottom of the ear base (as you see in the pictures with the sutures and staples in the base of the puppies ear) and trim the bell so the it wraps around and make a curve to the ear shap rather than leaving it flat you'll get a good crop.

Dr Pew does excellent crops. Dr Smith in Sherwood, Oregon is really known as a Boxer specialist. I know that one of the show breeders in Washington state had him do a litter a while back and wasn't as pleased as she thought she'd be. Boxer show crops and Dobe show crops are somewhat different. So my take on Dr Smith would be that he'd give you a decent crop but not all that it could be.

Good luck. I think we've heard about the vet that is doing the very expensive crops in the past and I seem to remember that one of the list members got a puppy cropped there and was not very happy with the results--but that's just foggy memory and I haven't got enough time to actually go looking for it now.
 

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Thanks longshot! Do you happen to have a straight on shot of Callie?

I agree and am willing to pay that much for a GOOD crop, but from the pics I just recieved from the vet that quoted me $650, he does not even do a good, clean crop.

Jan, thank you again for your opinion on Dr. Pew. I have heard great things about him. They only emailed me one pic. It is the same one on there website. Did anyone else on here use him and have any pics they'd like to share? :) Surprisingly, he is the cheapest out of about 6-7 vets I have looked into. $375 -$425, depending on weight. That is probably who we will go with. Not because he is cheapest, but because I've had several people recommend him. Again, just exploring all my options.

My husband's harrassing me as I type, asking if I've decided who I want to use yet because he will be the one doing the driving while I stay home with the kids :)

BTW, for the others who asked, I am in SW Idaho.
There was someone on DT that goes by Ripley who had Dr. Pew do their pup's ears on my recommendation. I don't think she ever posted pictures of her boy on DT after his ear crop, but she did send me some pics. Unfortunately, they were lost when my computer crashed. I don't think she's on DT much, but you could probably PM her and perhaps she could send you a photo of her boy. :)

Okay, I lied, apparently she did post a picture of her boy. This is a photo of him just after she took them down the first time they were posted.



Jan
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for all of the info and insight dobebug! I appreciate it very much!

Have you heard anything about Dr. Meyer's at Riverview Medical Clinic in Clarkston, WA? Wylde sent me pics of her dog that was cropped there and I think her dogs ears turned out great, however the pics the actual clinic sent me were not very close up, and the shape did not look the same as Wylde's. The only reason we are considering going there vs. Dr. Pew is because we have family there, so it would make finding a place to stay over night easier and cheaper and it would be a good excuse to visit family :) I am going to call and see if he removes a wedge from the base of the ear. Wylde, if you are reading this...Did your puppy's ears look like the ones I posted above after surgery. I know he didn't put them in a cup or anything, but did they have a wedge taken out at the base of the ear?

Thanks Jan! I actually read your post before you edited it to add the picture. I just dug through the archives and found that same pic. What a cutie pie! And his ears look awesome. Looks like we're in the same city. I will have to send her a PM about a possible play date :)
 
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