Cropping and Docking

eIMG_7947Doberman Tails

The Doberman Pinscher’s tail is rather long naturally, but individual canines can have a short tail as a result of docking, a procedure in which the majority of the tail is surgically removed from the dog quickly after birth.
The practice of docking tails has been around for centuries, longer than the Doberman breed has been around. The alleged reason for docking is to guarantee that the tail does not get in the way of the dog’s job. Docking has constantly been questionable. The American Kennel Club standard for Doberman Pinschers includes a tail docked near the 2nd vertebra. Docking is an usual method in the countries where it is legal, such at the United States, Japan, and Russia, as well as others.  In Australia and many of the European nations, docking has become illegal.  In other countries, it is strictly limited.


Doberman Pinschers often have their ears cropped, as do many other breeds of dogs.  Cropping is considers a functional procedure to help the dog with effective sound localization. The ears are “normally cropped and carried erect” according to the standards set forth in the Doberman Pinscher Club of America. Like tail docking, ear cropping is prohibited in some countries, and Doberman Pinschers have natural ears. Doberman Pinscher ear cropping is normally done between 7 and 9 weeks of age and is done under an anesthetic. Cropping done after 12 weeks has a reduced rate of success in getting the ears to stand.

Doberman Pinschers are allowed to be shown with either cropped or natural ears in conformation shows in some countries. In Germany, though, a dog cannot be shown at all if it has cropped ears or a docked tail, regardless of it’s country of origin.  Some exceptions to this plan do occur when Germany is the place for international events.

Whether cropping the ears minimizes the danger of ear infections as opposed to leaving the ears pendulous has often been topic of debate in the dog breeding world.