Floppy Ears - Page 1

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by Nabil2399 on 17 July 2017 - 19:07

I have a long coated GSD, he has a great lineage however he struggles with his ears. I had to tape them twice inorder for them to stay up and firm. However when he runs they can of move a bit, they wave a bit. My question is how bad will this do him while in the SV ring and will he be disqualified or allowed to compete but lose points.


by yogidog on 17 July 2017 - 20:07

What age

by susie on 17 July 2017 - 21:07

I second Yogi
Another question: how old was your dog when you taped the ears? A lot of people become impatient too soon...

Never forget: No matter if your dog´s ears will stay firm or not in the future, never forget that the tendency for floppy ears is genetic...
not important in case of showing and titling, but important in case of thinking about breeding

by Nabil2399 on 18 July 2017 - 00:07

He is now 14 months old, I taped his ears at around 6 months then they fell back down and then again at around 8 months and they have been up ever since. And yes indeed I am aware, once i bought him i had little knowledge about it and about the GSD world in general. His lineage has Ober van Bad-ball in it and according to my research the genes comes down from there.

Yes, I know that when breeding I have to take it into consideration, right now my worries lie in the show aspect of it, the Seiger show in my country is around the corner and other than the floppy ears he is a great dog and it would be a pity if he couldn't make it.


by Lunastar on 18 July 2017 - 01:07

Floppy ears usually occur in GSDs from ear infections or ears having too much weight more than from genetics. As your GSD is a long coat, the problem is most likely weight. The added hair will weight the ears down and make the flop about when moving. Ear size itself is also a problem as taller ears weight more. So a good long coated GSD should have smaller ears than what most shorter coat GSDs have. Ear flopping is a major reason for not many people breeding or showing the long coats as well.


by Hundmutter on 18 July 2017 - 07:07

I think the amount of weight that extra coat length or a taller ear puts on to each ear pinna is negligible. The sheer size of the ears, if they are too big in proportion to the head, IS genetic, anyway. As are 'soft ears'.

I think the OP has to face it - six months was a bit late to start taping ears that did not look as though they might stay up by themselves, and 14 months is too late to have much hope of them doing it naturally. Generally if both ears have not at least been up fully (even if they didn't stay up, then) by about 6 months, they ain't gonna rise. And yes, done inexpertly, taping can damage the cartilege and make things worse.


by aaykay on 18 July 2017 - 08:07

There are also other reasons why a naturally erect ear, with no genetic issues, might go down. For instance, Hematoma.

Hematomas can arise due to something as simple as ear scratching due to say ticks or fleas. And once the ear goes down, there is very little chance for it to go up again, even when the hematoma is taken care of. Primarily due to cartilage damage that occurred when the hematoma weighed the ear down.

by aaykay on 18 July 2017 - 08:07

Another reason could be damage to the muscle that keeps the ear erect (located on the inner part of the ear), during rough-play as pups, even when the ear cartilage is initially undamaged. Thus a pup with ears that should genetically go up (and even has gone up once), will then turn out to have floppy ears. And so on.


by Hundmutter on 18 July 2017 - 13:07

As to the show-ring angle of the OP's question, it would be regarded as 'fault judging' if a judge penalised an otherwise good dog ONLY for having a softish ear carriage, that made them wave a bit in the breeze while gaiting ! But there are no measurements of what a minor negative (ie NOT a fault or a DQ as per the Standard the Show is operating under) is WORTH; we can only say that the judge is being unnecessarily picky, perhaps.

It comes down to what is in front of your dog in the final line-up - if SG1 or V1 (or equivalent) goes to a dog that is in every apparent respect the equal to yours, then it is surely obvious that any judge would (and should) put that dog above one whose ears are 'playing with the wind', even where every other thing about the second dog is equally good. After all, the Judge is looking for a 'winner' that fits ALL the demands of the Standard, and therefore is as close to an 'ideal' specimen as possible. And if its not ... then the ears may not come into the picture at all.

Can't say more than that without knowing a whole lot more about which country this Sieger is taking place, what the general standard of dogs being entered is, etc. For which I'd need to live and exhibit there. It strikes me that if you have been Showing this dog, with the ears as they are, you must have started to get the measure of what Judges think of him

by now ? And if he is so far unshown, a Sieger is a helluver place to start exhibiting.

Other permanent damage like that caused by a haematoma ('cauliflower ear' effect) probably could have no remedial course of action, or at least not a surgical one that your Kennel Club or the SV would be inclined to accept. So you'd be stuck with that, and how judges might regard it.

Yeah, exhibiting dogs IS a crap-shoot, you need to be lucky sometimes.

by old shatterhand on 18 July 2017 - 14:07

Floppy ears is a disqualifying fault. Soft ears is also a serious fault and should not be allow to breed. Read the breed standard and you'll know which faults are serious, or disqualifying. Ears are one of them. This dog might be a great pet,but not a breeding material.

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