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Ear Crop Information and Care

Discussion in 'Health & Nutritional Care' started by pitbullsareteddies, Apr 4, 2011.

  1. pitbullsareteddies

    pitbullsareteddies Big Dog Premium Member

    So, you want to have your pup's ears cropped? Here is some information to help you along the path from choosing a vet, picking a style you like, and caring for your dog after the crop, including a couple methods of posting/taping their ears.

    First of all, the best time to crop your pup is before they are 12 weeks of age. However, if they have a standing ear set, you can crop them at almost any time in their life, as the hard part about cropping is getting them to stand.

    Next, you will want to ask your pup's breeder or other local breeders where they get their dog's ears done. Prices for an ear crop vary, from under $100, to over $1,000. Price does not always equal quality, so make sure you get references and pictures of a vet's prior crops.

    Here are the different crop styles for American Pit Bull Terriers:

    On your first vet visit, take in a picture or two of dogs with crops that you like, and make sure the vet is okay with cropping ears in that style. Some vets crop every dog the same way, while others can crop them to look however you prefer. This is where photos of their former crops come in handy, so you can judge whether or not you will like the outcome.

    Once you choose a vet, you will probably need to take your pup in for an initial visit to check if they will be able to handle anesthesia. Some vets run blood tests, some do not. They will give you instructions for the night before surgery.. probably no food the night before, and no water the morning of. Make sure you pay attention to this!

    After the crop, some vets send the pups home the same day, some prefer to keep them overnight. They will likely give the pup medication for pain while they are under anesthesia, and also send home pain medication to be used as they need it. There are also vets who attach foam or supports to the pup's ear before sending them home, while others tape them to a plastic rack. I prefer the supports, as I couldn't keep my pup's rack on her head. :)

    The first night, your pup will probably be drowsy from the anesthetic, and possibly sore around the ears as well. The vet will give you information for after care, so make sure you follow it to a T. If at any point you notice infection or other issues, call your vet ASAP, and see if it's something you need to bring your pup in for. I would also recommend keeping the Elizabethan Collar/Cone on your pup whenever you are not directly supervising them. It only takes one time of them scratching their ear for them to pop a stitch and have to go back to get it fixed.

    While their stitches are in, do not tape their ears. You can use the following method to help them stand, as it does not touch their stitches:

    No Tape Ear Standing Method - mole foam

    Once the stitches come out (usually 7 to 10 days after the procedure, depending on the vet), you can either take your pup to the vet to be posted, or you can do it yourself. If you are unsure at any point whether or not you are doing it right, please go to the vet. If you tape the ears too tight, you can cut off blood supply and essentially kill a good part of their ear.
    Here are some videos that will help you out in the taping process:




    With any surgery that requires anesthesia, there are risks involved with putting a dog under. Chances are low that there will be problems, but things do happen, so be prepared for that.

    Once the crop is over and done with, there can be issues with infection, poor healing, and scarring. Some of these issues are the fault of the owner, and some issues cannot be prevented, even with the best ear care.

    I hope this information will help those interested in getting their dog's ears cropped, and educate them on all aspects of the procedure. It does not end at the surgery; owners must be prepared to put a lot of time and effort into getting those ears to heal and stand.

    Feel free to post good vets for cropping, pictures of crops, or other information. :)
  2. Mack-Diesel

    Mack-Diesel Puppy

    Great post, I love the look but the Mack is 7 months and I dont want to put him through that pain, his perky ears get him a lot of attention with the ladies lol
  3. chancey6

    chancey6 Puppy

    Great post

    I took my boy in to get his ears done and wanted the battle crop. Needless to say THE MICHIGAN AVE ANIMAL HOSPITAL AKA KARS, MANGLED MY BOYS EARS.
    Sham on them and please if you live in the Ypsilanti/Ann Arbor area DO NOT GO THERE!
  4. Lee D

    Lee D Good Dog

    how do you screw up a battle crop?
  5. chancey6

    chancey6 Puppy

    That's what the F**K I was thinking.:mad:
  6. kady05

    kady05 Krypto Super Dog

    For anyone reading this (and I know pitbullsareteddies said it in the OP, but I'm saying it again), PLEASE research vets BEFORE you take your dog in for an ear crop. ASK for pictures of previous crops the vet has done, or better yet, see dogs in person that have been done by that specific vet.
  7. chancey6

    chancey6 Puppy

    I second that!
  8. pitbullsareteddies

    pitbullsareteddies Big Dog Premium Member

    And even after you do all that research.. things can still go screwy. Happened with Indie.

    First Crop:
    And the "fixed" crop:

    My vet came highly recommended, but he still flubbed it up. Then tried to charge me to change it. (Somerset Animal Hospital in MD) He insisted after they healed, and seeing that first pic, that there was very little difference, and it would be fine as she grew. WTF? Really? I can still tell they are different after the fix. He wouldn't even take off what I wanted him to for the fix, but it was that, or pay full price at another vet to fix it.

    Moral? Always be prepared to have a crop that doesn't turn out right.
  9. This is my lil girl and shes about 1 and i was just wondern if her ears are "upright" like you said? just curious :D

    Attached Files:

  10. kady05

    kady05 Krypto Super Dog

    What do you mean? You girl looks like she has nice rose ears. Here's a chart for natural ears:

  11. pookie!

    pookie! GRCH Dog

    Bear has all of those ears lol on any given day. :)

    I kind of wish I would have gotten his ears done, I think it would have made him look more "put together" as someone said. I am happy with his ears though :) Everyday is a surprise, and his ears reflect his goofy happy nature.

    Minaj the Rednose -Your dogs ears are rose and arent "standing" at all.
  12. kady05

    kady05 Krypto Super Dog

    LOL, their ears go crazy during teething, so once he's done with that for awhile, you will start to see his "real" ears. He'll grow into them eventually, don't worry ;) Look at Piper's ears, they're a mess.. gives her character haha.
  13. pitbullsareteddies

    pitbullsareteddies Big Dog Premium Member

    Great link, Kady! :)
  14. Well the thread said that if the ears are in the right position they can have them cropped at anytime is that true?
  15. Pink

    Pink GRCH Dog

    Great idea for a thread!
  16. kady05

    kady05 Krypto Super Dog

    Oh I see that now, I think she meant a full prick set, which your dog does not have. And personally, I would never crop a dog after 12-14wks. old. Sako was done at 9wks.
  17. yea i love my little girls ears i was told when i got her that she was to old and when i saw the thread i was just confused but you have cleared that up thanks!:D
  18. luckilylovinlyfe

    luckilylovinlyfe Good Dog

    Eagle was done at 15 weeks I think its really up to the dogs ears what age the cut off time should be. I personally wouldn't crop any dogs after 16 weeks. But I remember reading somewhere that back in the day they wouldn't even crop a young pups ears until they were 5 months and up.
  19. HAVIK2211

    HAVIK2211 Little Dog

    Attached Files:

  20. zeus's owner

    zeus's owner Puppy

    I have a question i hope someone can answer.I had my pups ears croped two weeks ago.When we got the stiches out they taped them up and he had it off before we were out the door.So they said bring him back today and he got it off again as soon as we got home.So i took him back and they rewrapped them and put a plastic cone on his head.he hates and his trying to get it off.What should i do? i am afraid he is going to mess them up and they will not stand up.

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