How Do I Dock His Tail?

topic posted Fri, March 24, 2006 - 1:15 PM by  Unsubscribed
I have an 8 week old boston terrier and he needs his tail docked. Its going to look retarded when he gets older. I've heard that there is a band that you can wrap around his tail at this age and after a while it will just die and fall off. Are there any other ways? I obviously dont want to hurt him but I REALLY want his tail docked!
posted by:
  • Unsu...
    If you must do it, please take him to the Vet to have it done. Tail docking is basically amputation. There is bone and muscle and tendons involved. Having it done under anesthesia, in a sterile environment is the only humane method IMHO.
  • ughhhh. When I become a vet I'm going to refuse to do that procedure (along with ear cropping). Anyways, I highly suggest you have a vet do it. There are too many issues that can arise from a do-it-yourself procedure, such as infections, spinal cord issues, incontinance, etc. Doing it yourself can be really dangerous to your dog plus it's illegal.
  • Unsu...
    yikes i didnt know it was illegal, maybe he gets to keep his little tail after all! I could have sworn someone told me you just bind with with a rubber band and it slowly falls off... hmm...
    • you would be surprised how many people actually think this is an effective way to dock tails and crop ears...
      Working in the city pounds, we picked up dogs monthly that had a rubber bad around tails and ears. In all cases the tails could not be saved and the ears had to be cropped.

      Havent you ever watched animal cops and seen the dogs they pick up that people have done this too? They arrest these people, its called animal cruelty....

      I cant even believe that you would have even considered putting a rubber band around your dogs tail! And lets say you did this and his tail got infected, what would you tell the vet? Your friends? Do you think people would have a high opinion of your for doing this? No, most likely, they would take your dog away and you would get fined for animal cruelty. Common sense should have told you this is not a good idea.

      • And still, I think it's better to inform people in ways that make them not afraid to ask for fear of being called mean or stupid. I'd rather someone ask, than be afraid to ask and then do something that might harm their dog.
        • I agree people should feel free to ask questions and participate in the free excchange of information. However, that being said, people should do their research before the make the LIFETIME commitment to dog guardianship. It sounds to me as if she purchased her dog from a backyard breeder because it does not sound like she was given correct information. Now is that nicer?
    • who ever told you that is a dumb ass!!! the vet I work with sees crap like this all the time with pit bulls and rotties. its inhumane and hillbilly! DON'T DO IT! if you must dock it do it asap before he is too old. Besides BT's have corkscrew tails anyhow so it will look cute
      • Yes, Leigh, don't hate this place! Aside from trolls and some people who don't read all the posts before posting (Kristina, she already decided against it-like-years ago!) this is a great tribe! We've all heard misinformation from somewhere at some point about whatever! I hope you'll not be afraid to ask for advice in the future.
  • Banding a dog's tail at any age is painful and can lead to serious infection. In many areas of the country this is considered cruelty and against the law. Please take your dog to a reputable vet and have this done humanely and safely.

    On another note, I have two bostons myself... you have chosen a truly wonderful breed! :)
  • Unsu...
    This is interesting. I just read the AKC standards for Boston Terriers:

    This is what they say:

    The tail is set on low, short, fine and tapering, straight or screw and must not be carried above the horizontal. (Note: The preferred tail does not exceed in length more than one-quarter the distance from set-on to hock.) Disqualify: Docked tail.

    It sounds like Boston Terriers are to be left "natural" and should not have their tails docked.

    How long, exactly, is your terrier's tail? Does the end go past his hock (the pointy "elbow" on his hind leg)?
    • Unsu...
      I just don't get tail and ear docking.
      I dabbled in breeding (mini american eskimos) - only made it through one litter before deciding it wasn't something I wanted to continue - I was reluctant even to have the puppies' dewclaws removed, but was told that they often grow into the foot, tend to get snagged, etc. - still not sure about that, but I did it.
      BUT - surgically altering a dog for cosmetic reasons? I don't think so!
  • I think the real question is How do I mutilate my dog's tail?

    I just don't agree with this and I wish people would stop doing it. Why don't we start docking people's parts?
    • Unsu...
      we do, its called circumcision. :)
      • Leigh, I'm glad you made that point. I personally wouldn't want to dock my dog's tail (or circumsize my child), but there are responsible vets and owners on both sides of the issue. If you decide to do it, I hope you have a vet do the procedure.
        • Unsu...
          i dont think you guys are understanding the fact that its my puppy that i love more than anything its not like im gonna hurt the little thing or put its health in danger jesus christ...

          actually im going to use a butter knife and just saw the thing off.
          • leigh, unfortunately, even if you do use a vet, it's a painful procedure and it has serious risks involved. So, yeah, you technically were (I say were because I'm not sure if you still plan to do this) planning on hurting him. I'm glad you asked about this before going ahead with what you heard (rubber band around tail) from someone who obviously was unclear on animal welfare and cruelty. That I commend you for.
      • Circumcision can be a choice. Your dog does not have a voice, only yours and the apparent voices in your head. You are a complete and utter moron and do not deserve to have an animal that you will not treat in an appropriate manner. If you don't take your dog to the vet to have his tail docked (which is wrong and stupid) then you should not have a dog. If you cannot afford to take him to the vet then you cannot afford a dog. To the other people in the tribe, maybe we can take up a donation to get the dog to a safe place?
  • Hey, Leigh-

    I saw your puppy pics - What a cute lil' guy! I just got a new pup myself, part Aussie cattle dog, part Pit. I have my hands full and he's totally worth it. You should go see his pics in my photos, I'm very proud of him.

    Looking at my kid, and at yours, I'd have to join with the no-docking crowd, too, and here's why:

    I had a friend once who adopted a MinPin from a show breeder. They had trimmed his ears and docked his tail, and ground his toenails back to the quick, then decided not to show him after all. Anyway, whenever I would take the little guy out walking, all I could see was his asshole bouncing down the sidewalk because his tail was gone and there was nothing else to look at but his asshole, and he was so little it really looked huge out there all by itself. Sometimes I would sit and play with his little nubbin where the tail was cut away and feel the point of the severed bone under the skin, and feel how the skin sort of floated around on that bone. We would laugh when he tried to wag his tail that wasn't there. But it kinda wasn't really funny. I wished I could see him wag his tail but it just wasn't there, no matter how hard he tried there was nothing to wag.

    Tails are expressive. They are part of the dog's image and identity. Dogs express themselves as much with their tails as they do with their eyes, their bark, or their body posture. You can tell a lot about what your dog is thinking, or what he's about to do, by watching his tail. You can tell if he feels good, or if he might be sick by the way he holds his tail. They like to chase their own tails, too. And when he's happy to see you, the tail wags like crazy.

    If you look your puppy in those big watery eyes and ask him if he wants his tail docked , I'll bet he'd say no.

    I know it's kind of a cool look for a dog to have a docked tail or trimmed ears. But natural is a pretty cool thing, too. Once it's gone, it's gone, it's a final thing. I know the pain part is temporary and it isn't going to do him terrible damage. But it's not like it's cancerous and is gonna kill him, it's just for a "look". I'd just like to ask that you take your time in making this decision and really think about it from all sides, and how necessary this is to your little guy's well being. Look at it from his point of view 'cuz after all, it's his tail and I imagine he sorta likes it.

    Just my opinion for whatever its worth.

    BTW - Circumcision (ie cutting away a foreskin) isn't quite the same as cutting off the penis, which people tend not to want to do for some odd reason. ;)
    • GUS!

      did i spoil it?
      • Tail docking is usually done when the pup is only a couple days old before the tail is fully developed and healing is very quick.
        At 8 weeks, the tail is fully developed, nerves fully in place. Docking at that late of an age is painful and the risk of infection, or just poor healing is high. I saw one poodle once who had her tail docked when she was 6 months old, and the healing process took months...the tail bone kept poking out through the skin opening at the was nasty business.
        If your pups tail wasn't docked at day 2, then it's best to leave it where it is.

        Hey Brody and Leigh, why don't you post some of those pics here so I can make your pups dog of the day?!
      • Hey Merc. Gus isn't hear twoday. He's decided to run off with the neighbors and eat cat rocha....Butt, I do agree with the docking issue. I believe that dogs express themselves with their tails. I personally prefer a dog with a complete tail and ears and I feel that it is awe full. However - each pet parent has to decide what is best for their "child."

        right Merc?
  • Why the hell do you want his tail docked? I have read all the posts and still can't figure it out. Let the dog be a dog and keep his tail. Before reading all the posts in all the dog tribes I never knew how many stupid people there were in the world with dogs. Do you your dog a favor and find him a new home!
    • Unsu...
      <<At 8 weeks, the tail is fully developed, nerves fully in place. Docking at that late of an age is painful and the risk of infection, or just poor healing is high. I saw one poodle once who had her tail docked when she was 6 months old, and the healing process took months...the tail bone kept poking out through the skin opening at the was nasty business.
      If your pups tail wasn't docked at day 2, then it's best to leave it where it is. >>

      all very accurate and the clearest response. make your decision based on this.
      • If you dock his tail, then please agree to have your own left pinky finger amputated too. Both procedures make equal sense to me.
        • Unsu...
          • this aint nothin babe

            sorry you are getting your feelings hurt by the banter... there are many overopinionated people out there... and dogs... but i still would say aside from mabie 2 folks in here that has bad breath the others are just concerned... sorry, you have the power to delete the whole thread if ya wanna.. it was an honest inquiry.. and there are many doggie tribes if ya wanna move to one o those
          • If your hostile language (please,note I never used vulgarities) is any indication of your ability to take care of your dog, please do the world a favor and don't have kids. I have a life, I own and manage animal related businesses, sit on the board of several animal charities and am certified on animal and people CPR/First Aid. My concern first and foremost is the well being of the animal. And, by the way, if I could fuck myself, I would not need a husband. :-)
            • Unsu...
              oh my word

              new to this tribe. second thread i've logged onto. twice disappointed by the lack of ability to communicate and exchange information.

              my time is better spent elsewhere.

            • Unsu...
              That was the lamest joke ive ever heard.

              Get off your high horse and do something productive rather than being some fucking over reactive piece of shit.

              And quit bragging about your animal charity bullshit, I dont think anyone could care less.
              • I was not bragging you brainless idiot. (Now that is name calling) Merely stating that I have more that a passing interest in animals.
                If you cannot figure that out, well, too bad.
                I have not at any point resorted to vulgarities. You apparently were raised by potty-mouthed apes.
                • Baylor, you need to chill out. There was no reason for your initial attack. Leigh asked an honest question, got honest answers and chose what she would do based on that. Would you rather have her not ask at all and go ahead with it? At least she was trying to educate herself before doing something. Your attack just makes people less likely in the future to ask similar questions due to fear of what you have displayed.
    • Um, Baylor? She actually said before your LAST rant that she isn't docking his tail. Why do you need this fight so much?
      • Oh, and that post was meant to go with a much earlier Baylor rant. Leigh and V, and all of us really, it might help to keep in mind that the internet is about the only place where one can inflict oneself on others where they can't walk away. Obviously, there will be those whom NO ONE will talk to in life who take advantage of this situation. A few words into some posts, you can tell that their content doesn't reflect on YOU, but on the poster.
        • Unsu...
          I SECOND THAT.

          • Leigh, you should understand that there are a lot of people on here (myself included) that think of their dogs almost like their own children. And it's pretty hard to believe that anyone would think that strapping a rubber band around a part to make it just fall off is fine. Have you ever had a bandage that was wrapped too tightly? It hurts. The rubber band thing...animal cruelty. No matter how you look at it. So, I don't think people who care about that are pathetic.

            I will say, however, that you deserve kudos for looking into it first before just doing it. Any time anyone gives you "advice" about your dog (especially someone that's not a vet), always always always research to make sure you're doing the right thing for your animal. He's a cutie, by the way! ;-)
            • Unsu...
              why do people keep bringing up this rubber band thing?! i'd never even CONSIDER IN A MILLION years wrapping a rubber band around my dogs tail....................................
          • Have you all taken leave of your senses? When has it ever been acceptable to be rude online or otherwise? Leigh asked an honest question and shouldn't be attacked for doing so. On the other side, replying with hostility and vulgar language only makes it worse. Can we go back to being adults now and actually contribute something worth while to this group?

            Back to the topic: Boston Terriers have naturally stubby tails. When they are longer than a couple of inches, they tend to be very crooked and/or rigid. I myself had to have an inch or so taken off of my Boston's tail because it twisted directly in front of his anus. He couldn't lift his tail to poo which caused an unsanitary mess every time. So don't make this out to be an "anyone who docks their dogs tail is a monster" thing.
            • Unsu...
              my bostons tail is the perfect corkscrew shape. you can literally open a bottle of wine with his ass.
              • If my dog's tail were really curly, the cats would try to use it to pry open their food. Those Bastids.

                Seriously Leigh, don't mind the trolls that just stir things up...that's what they percieve as their job.
                • and that is an official (of sorts) term around here! Trolls... you can get booted by the Terms of Use Guy for it (T.O.U.). Many tribes post in the discription "no trolling" or "no trolls allowed" or "moderated no stalking".
              • If my dog's tail were really curly, the cats would try to use it to pry open their food. Those Bastids.

                Seriously Leigh, don't mind the trolls that just stir things up...that's what they percieve as their job.
                • Sorry - I don't know what is up with
                  • This is the maximum depth. Additional responses will not be threaded.
                    no worries, it does it to me all the time.
                    • Wow. You know, I've seen threads ALMOST do what this one did. Good job guys for bringing it back! I admit that I got impassioned about all the BS that was happening here, and I want to apologize to you all for my part in it.
                      We are mostly good people here who love dogs. Can I make a suggestion? The next time someone seems to need to go off the deep end (and we find ourselves hoping that someone has drained the pool,) maybe we-- I-- can try not to engage. I will try to keep to the topic and not let others get their attention needs met this way.
                      Leigh, I'm really glad you did ask your question. And I'm really glad we all care about the treatment of dogs' tails!
                      • Unsu...
                        his tail is kind of growing on me, its a really funny shape
                        • Unsu...
                          I agree with everyone who is saying "some people" should just chill out with the harsh responses to your initial post. And I am also glad you asked the question about docking rather than making a mistake.

                          Anyway, you say < my bostons tail is the perfect corkscrew shape.> which (see my earlier posts) is natural for a Boston Terrier. Unless it is too long or has problems such as those mentioned by Jaysun, there is no need to consider docking his tail. I met a Boston Terrier this past weekend who had a semi-screw shaped tail -- it was straight for the first 3" and then had a curlicue at the end. Looked kind of funny but that didn't matter cuz he was a real sweetie and it's the personality that counts with a dog.

                          Your boy sure is a cutie pie and I'll bet you have lots of fun helping him grow up to be the best little doggie. Have you decided on a name yet?
                          • Unsu...
                            well yes we finally got a name for him, his official name is GUS.
                            • Can I say with a big Awwwwwwe "That's a perfect name!" Of course I am partial as my dog's name is Gus too.
                              • Unsu...
                                I wanted to name my first dog (a miniature poodle mix) Gus...
                                he ended up with the name Alfie, AKA "Poodle M. White"
                                • "He ended up with the name Alfie, AKA 'Poodle M. White'"
                                  Sounds like there's a story there!
                                  • Unsu...
                                    oh, you know - clever parents
                                    Poodle M. White was his goin' to the vet name - these days they put the pet's actual name on the records, which is funny enough, but apparently back in the day they catagorized them by breed/gender/color.

                                    which reminds me - have any of you received stuff like credit card applications - sent to your dog or cat?
                                    my cat Boogaloo got one several years ago addressed to "Boogaloo Ramsey", and of course then she was on some kind of list, so they kept coming.
                                    And I was thinkin', who do they think this "person" IS with the first name "BOOGALOO"????
                                    I mean, really.
                                    • I enter raffles and contests with my dogs names, and my hamster. The funny thing is my dogs dont get any mail, but Hamalina Hammy Turner gets mail all the time. She has been gone for 5 years now and I still receive car flyers in the mail and circulars addressed to her.
  • There are many people who do this. I have seen it done and have had to do it before. Our vets showed us how to do the tails. Ears I refuse to even try. Your puppy how ever really needs to have it done by a vet. When they dock the tails normally it is done at 3-5 days. Same with the dew claws. The rubberband method I think they use the ones like on braces I believe. I have never seen or used this method. It is also done in the same time frame as the first method. I don't know where you are from but I know that is is NOT illegal here to do this. Like I said though with yours it is old enough it needs to be done by a vet if that is what you choose to do. Right now doing it at this age with a rubber band would be inhumane. I hope this helps you out. I am not going to tell you what to do it is your dog. Some people tend to go over board with things. Their opinion is all that matters and they don't want to listen. Here is a site i just found you might find it interesting and helpful
    • Your vet ''showed you how to do the tails " ... " Ears... you refuse to even try " ... ? (I'd love to know what vet or state for that matter, would show you how to do the tail or the ears...

      Why does this smell like a fake post...for reaction...hmmm....something seems weird.

      For the record. I grew up on a farm - When I was very young, we used to dock the lambs tails w/ rubber bands, very small, thick, special ones with a tool to stretch them open to put over the tail....If I could take BACK time I would have NEVER have done that - it's plain cruel...
      Spend the money and go to a proper vet...
  • Docking is carried out when puppies are tiny. Their eyes are not yet open and long experience indicates that carried out correctly, the procedure causes no pain or discomfort. Indeed, some puppies which are docked whilst they are asleep, do not even wake up. After docking, puppies will immediately return to their dam to feed, and there is no evidence that development or weight gain is in any way arrested by the docking procedure.

    Nor does a dog which has been docked as a puppy have any problems with balance or communication.

    I thought this was a place to ask questions. I guess i was wrong this is where you come to be bashed and ridiculed for asking. He didn't ask for anyone's biased opinion that was going to make him feel like he is torturing animals he was trying to find a humane way to do it maybe he can't afford the vet did any of you think of that!!!!!
    • If he can't afford a vet he shouldn't be doing a MEDICAL procedure.
      • that's why people do ignorant things because people like you make them feel stupid or ashamed then things go bad and you end up with a hurt or dead animal. that's the point of asking the question. he didn't asked for you opinion he was asking for actual facts
        • old drama=good reading at work

          not to try and start any new drama.... or am i? lol

          but! tail docking isn't always inhumane. a friend of mine with a big sweet mutt with a powerful tail, had her dog's tail docked. rohan was actually injuring his tail by constantly wagging it into things. bleeding around the house.

          i do think that unless medically necessary, we should avoid cutting off parts of anyone/animal
          • I'm sure your friend had a vet do it though, correct?

            I agree though, if it's medically necessary, that's one thing. I take issue though when people do it for aesthetics only.
            • yeah. a vet most certainly did it.
              • I had a guy call up my grooming salon once and try to talk me into neutering his cat. He told me he'd pay me extra if I would do it. The horrible thing is that I'm pretty sure he was dead serious.
                • Dear Wendy,

                  The guy who originally asked the question has unsubscribed so I highly doubt he'll be checking tribe a year later to find out how to dock his tail..

                  FTR - Typically on Tribe, if you have nothing on your profile about yourself, no pictures, no friends... You are often viewed as what would be called a Troll, trying to start arguments on issues...We are all big time dog lovers in here - wanting to ask about doing a medical procedure, that first off, isn't necessary and secondly - is being stupid to do for aesthetic reasons when he or she isn't medically trained... is ignoramus assiscus' (ohh I just made that word up ! ) .. Don't expect flowery fluffy answers to a question like that one. Sorry...
  • My first two dogs I got were English Springer Spaniels, the original owners had docked their tails. (I think it was legal back then)
    Anyway these dogs never had a problem, very happy for their entire lives.

    One of the above dogs I decided to breed and keep one of the puppies, I didn't actually know anything about docking I always thought it was some kinda butchers job, and never decided to do it.

    Now this dog with long tail, she swings and wags it so hard it hits her own body, it hits fences, gates, anything really, every-time i see her she's got blood patches on sides and her tail is bleeding. So because she hasn't had her tail docked, she suffers everyday, now my concern is infection, I've been cleaning her tail with salty water each day, but as she gets older her immune system will get weaker and her tail won't be able to heal. I'm really hoping she calms down when she gets older, but she's 6 years ago, and her tail is like a crazy whip, I have another spaniel her daughter however she swings her tail more elegantly.

    I actually discovered that docking a tail of a puppy is painless and easy, I saw a video online, all they did was put an elastic around the new puppy, and after 3 days the tail falls off like umbilical chord, safe, and painless. I always thought it some barbaric, like cutting an arm off, but it turns out its not.

    Now not all dogs need their days docking, but dogs like spaniels who are hyper, I think it's cruel to leave their tail on, my dog is in pain each day because of her tail, and it's potentially dangerous, because the risk of infection and the wound is exposed the majority of the time, the vet just said just keep cleaning it with salty water... But this is a lot of work and stress and pain which could of been avoided with a painless and easy elastic band around the tail as a pup.

    So I'd like to hear you people complain about tail docking now.

    By the way, she's not a working dog, but for a working spaniel without a doubt the tail should be docked, but even pet ones like my still suffer because of their tail, I suppose it's like a exploding appendix, something that's not required, but life saving to have removed.

    To be honest, I'm sick of your hippy animal rights people, you actually cause my dog a lifetime of suffering because you think its cruel to remove the tail, most of these animal rights people have never owned an animal, and don't actually look into the reasons why people remove the tails. I do however think its very wrong for people to remove tails from dogs for cosmetic reasons, but for English springer spaniels, removing the tail is potentially life saving, as I knew some people who's dog died from tail infection because of same problems my dog has, and they also cleaned the tail like i do, It's really down to the dogs immune system... If you had a open wound for 4-5 years that doesn't heal, you'd probably end up getting an infection and dying too.

    stitches don't work, they just rip open, the vet don't want to cut it off, and to be honest, I don't want to have it cut off, because once the dog is fully grown, cutting the tail off would be like cutting off an arm, painful, potentially dangerous, and I don't want to have to put my dog through that, but I think the laws should be changed for new pups.

    Sorry for my rant, by i'm just furious that these hippys, have ruined my dogs life, and ruined my life. Worrying about my dog.
    All I can hope is that my dog calms down in her age, she's almost 6 now, and she's more hyper than her 2 year old pup. She's like the fitess dog I've ever seen. When I say hyper, she's well behaved, i'm refering to her tail wagging...

    If you want his tail docked for comestic reasons, then don't do it, there's no need, I don't know anything about the type of dogs nature, but if its a quiet sort of dog leave it alone.

    If however you have an excitable dog like mine, do whatever it takes legally and safely to find a way to get around their hippy rules. I'm sure their are loop holes... Don't put your dog through what my dog has to go through.
    • The argument, if you read everything, was docking the tail of an older animal, not a days old puppy, when it's normally done and pretty harmless. When it's done to an older puppy or dog it can cause even more problems then you are currently experiencing.

      And don't blame other people for your choices. We all are responsible for educating ourselves and basing our decisions on that. You still say you don't want to cut it off, so I'm not quite sure why it's everyone else's fault for you keeping the tail on.

      Oh and BTW, I have had dogs and cats all my life and currently have 2 dogs, 3 cats and 6 chickens.

Recent topics in "Dogzone"

Topic Author Replies Last Post
A man loves men for sex Unsubscribed 0 November 5, 2014
nude senior gays' free meet up Unsubscribed 0 August 16, 2014
SOME HELP PLEASE Unsubscribed 0 April 16, 2014
Where'd eveyone go? Christiana/M... 18 November 22, 2012