Why Dogs Need Their Tails

written by :Anya Gavrilova
Hundreds of years ago people started to cut dogs tails to strengthen his invulnerability against a possible rival, another dog or animal. In our generation many kennels offer puppies for pre-order, and the owner can decide to cut the tail of his new pet or to leave it natural. The breeder makes a decision when to make and operation.

The tail is cut off when the puppies are 3 – 5 days, and the operation takes no more than 90 minutes. It doesn’t hurt that much because newborn puppies don’t have a developed nervous system yet and too small to remember any pain and fear. The procedure of tail docking is relatively safe, if the vet takes all aseptic and antiseptic measures. If for any reasons the operation didn’t come off, when the puppy was 5 days old, it’s possible to make it at the age of 3-6 months, but in such case docking must be performed using general anesthesia and sutures. Tail docking is not recommended to be done on its own. Consult the veterinarian and take your pet to the clinic, if the breeder didn’t cut his tail before.

The postoperative period is about 2 weeks and as any operation, tail docking can cause certain complications. Bleeding. This factor depends on the age at which surgery is performed. The older the dog is, the greater the risk of bleeding. Inflammation of joints. It happens when the vet failed to provide the sterile operation or when the puppy has low immunity or divergence of joints.
Tail docking is prohibited if a puppy has any health deviations (lethargy, increased/decreased appetite, swelling of body parts, etc.). In such cases don’t carry out the operation without consultation with a specialist.

For some breeds docking is a requirement of the breed standard. Nevertheless, in some countries, such as the UK, Australia and European countries, tail docking is prohibited by the law.Breeds, which go through the tail docking: Giant and Miniature Schnauzers, Doberman, Bulldog, Boxer, terriers (Yorkshire Terrier, Welsh Terrier, Black Terrier, and Fox Terrier), Poodle, Staffordshire Bull terrier, Shar pei, and spaniels ( English Cocker, Russian Spaniel, and American Cocker).

One of the weightiest arguments against the tale docking is that dogs need tails to express their emotions and without a tail they will not be able to do it completely being more stressed. It’s also believed that dogs with cut tails have problems with coordination.  But at the same time tale docking has some benefit. During hunting dogs often injure their tails, that’s why docking is a forced and helpful procedure in such cases. Dogs with cut tails also have more chances to win at specific exhibitions.

You can find a lot of arguments “for” and “against”, but one thing is clear – dogs don’t need docking by themselves. Each owner can decide, if it’s worthy to expose the pet operations for the sake of compliance with human notions of beauty. And at the end, it’s not so important whether your puppy has a log tail or short. Happiness of the pet depends on love and care of the owner.

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