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10 Reasons to Fight for Tails

June 7, 2011

1. The tail wafts or shields dog pheromones which assist the dog in communicating sex, age, rank, fear, etc.

2. The tail acts as a counter balance when a dog moves at high speed, turns sharply, balances on narrow ledges, jumps, or climbs. Dogs have more difficulty performing the same tasks accurately with docked tails.

3. Dogs communicate primarily through body language. Dogs without tails have difficultly communicating. This may lead to aggression. Ref, Ref

4. Removal of the tail in puppies can lead to improper development of the rectal and anal muscles, leading to an increased risk of fecal and urinary incontinence. Ref

5. It is claimed that heavy coated breeds need tails removed for hygiene reasons. Clipping hair around the anal region is the only effective hygiene measure. Ref, Ref  Many undocked breeds have similar hair thickness and no increased hygiene issues.

A dog can express more with his tail in minutes, than his owner can express with his tongue in hours.
– Author Unknown

6. Docking involves cutting through muscles, tendons and up to seven pairs of highly sensitive nerves, and severing bone and cartilage connections. A dog’s tail is the continuation of its spine. Tail removal is NOT similar to circumcision. If circumcision was like docking tails, much more than skin would be cut off. Ref

7. Some say that docking does not hurt a puppy, but 25 years of medical and veterinary literature contradicts this assertion. Additionally there is physiological evidence that puppies feel a greater degree of pain than an adult subjected to the same procedure. Ref, Ref

8. Badly executed docking requires painful corrective surgery and can result in death.

9. The claim that docking prevents tail damage in hunting/gundogs is given by advocates of docking. Tail injury is insignificant and <0.5% for either undocked or docked dogs. Many breeds of hunting/gundogs do not have docked tails, schnauzers should be on the list too. Ref

10. Docking ears and tails is an elective cosmetic surgery (Ref, Ref), but in countries where it’s not outlawed, breeders cut tails and ears off almost immediately after birth and you MUST have a contract for your puppy not be cut prior to birth. North American breeders may charge extra to not cut or refuse your request.

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See more photos of natural dogs here.

Read more on this topic at wikipedia

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From → Firsts, Health

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