A labrador retriever's correct coat type is totally different from a spaniels as well. A slightly oily feel to it means that burrs and stuff are far less likely to get caught in it, even in the slightly longer hairs on the tail.
did any of you see the news cliping on that page about the dog who wagged his tail breaking it? That cracked me up. When I was young my friend had a beagle and that dog wagged and wagged untill one day he waged his tail todeath.
I think docked tails are ok. depending on the breed, the dog, and the owner.
Rocky has a stub and you can tell alot by his tail, or lack of. He will wag it, tuck it, do nothing with it, Though its not long you can still see when hes tucking it. For a wile we though his tail didnt work he never wagged it. but after he got setteld in we found out it works just fine. It still cracks me up to see his tail wagg.
I think croping and docking are going to be one of those things that people just dont agree on.
"If we are going to argue about communication then we should also get rid of dogs with ridged-backs correct? As all dogs must assume they are aggressive."
this is an obvious exagerration (sp?). I do have evidence that dogs do you use thier tails for communication. besides bringin an exgerrated comment, do you have actual facts that supports your claim that communication is not a good argument.
I think about 90% of the dogs that are docked, never see a day in the field. And the proponets of docking and cropping, always use the field as thier out. When in fact they argue it's humanity because it does not fit into thier very different agenda.
Which I have agreed that real working dogs, it is more humane to remove the tail, than to let it get shredded. But I think when it is done for vanity, it's entirley vane, and if not inhuman, unnecassary.
And the ridge on the back is accompanied by many other postures and gestures besides the ridge (which is very different than a natural ridge). And a dog raising it's hair is a defense not an offense. those dogs are not aggresive, thier scared.
***Edited By: gunny on 12/7/2006 1:45:53 AM*** Reason: s
Communication between dogs is the issue.Unless a dog is socialized early with different tail types, it could cause problems, for the dog with the tail docked. In this circumstance the dogs ears are also floppy so are less expressive as well. If the dog is a working dog, then cropping it will be less troublsome, I can see what problems can follow for a dog with the tail left and the burrs always being pulled out. Soon you'd have a dog that doesn't like his tail touched. If the dog is simply a pet, then it won't be as important.
I have bred and shown Boxers for years and I can assure you that cropping and docking is no more cruel than the dog with natural ears that gets constant ear infections due to poor air circulation and tails that need to be shortened at an older age because of damage caused by whipping their tails against walls, coffee tabes, pianos etc. I know cropping is controversial but think about the dogs in the wild, foxes, coyotes, wolves etc., they all have erect ears by natural design because they don't have owners to clean them out when moisture and dirt builds up or to remove burrs, sticks etc. It's much better for our breed to get these same defenses by cropping. It is written in our standard that ears need to be cropped so I also do it for show purposes. That being said when I have a potential puppy owner ask me what they should do I tell them that it's their choice ( I do live in the Live Free or Die State afterall). As for communication, uncropped ears and undocked tails are just as expressive and I have never seen a dog react differently to another due to docking or cropping. I work at a boarding and training facilty and always have to match up dogs that are of different breeds and don't know each other to go out for play groups. Communication is much more than just ears and tails, it's whole body language, and sounds as well.
Although my life is full of Irish Setters now I have owned a Brit. Lucy was able to wag her little tail and communicate with people and other dogs quite well. Docking is no crueler then taking pups in to have their dew claws removed.
I get my puppies tails docked and when the vet does it I insist that they be given a small pain shot to numb the area, I am against pain of any sort. My puppies do not come out of the room crying like most others do, and I take the mom with me so that she can nurse them as soon as the vet is done.
As for ear infection from a "floppy" ear, all my dogs have natural ears and have never had an ear infection, it is the care that you provide that will keep this from happening....a few minutes a week and the whole ear infection drama can be avoided....my vets will not do ears as all 3 of them say it is to painful a process to put a dog thru.
My Shiba mix's tail tells me ALOT. He talks to me with it all the time. Yes, it curls up over his back, but.. I am very tuned in to the motions of that tail, I know when he's scared, mad, sad, regretful, happy and nervous, just to name a few, by the way he holds his tail. I know at least four children that would probably have been bitten had I not been able to read my dogs' communication through his tail. He reacts differently to every child, and I know when to remove him according to his tail, when no other part of his body is responding at all. Not to even mention the communications between him and his dog friends/new friends. Every inch of him is sending messages where other dogs are concerned, his tail being a big factor.
I dont think I could have a dog with a docked tail.. I'd be lost :)
When I was doing my research for Dokker, my Schipperke, trying to find a breeder, it took an extra month just to find a breeder who hadn't/wouldn't dock his tail. I just think it's stupid when he was just a pet, why put him through ANYTHING that doesnt serve a purpose? And docking my in-home pet's tail was pointless. And they're cute tails too, to further the point :)
edit: I have no experience with hunting or field breeds per se, but overall I just prefer dogs to have their tails and ears. But, I see dogs as dogs, not trophies, not clowns, not magicians, and not anything but something to give love to, get love from, and just good companionship. That's just me, though, I wont judge anyone what they do, long as it's not cruel and neglectful, then to each their own.
***Edited By: Dookndokkermom on 12/8/2006 10:21:33 AM*** Reason: .
I find the build up of bacteria has more to do with infections than the length of the ears, and ear waz being a natural antibiotic can control this. but the problem I find is food is a major culprit of ear infections. more so than the length of ears.