Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ears - aargh!

I have never had to tape Cardi ears. Maggie came to me at 7 months old - ears up and pretty. Denzil came to us at ~10 weeks with ears already up (he always was an over-achiever). Ziggy joined us at 16 weeks with enormous upright ears.

Rip joined us with lovely beagle-like ears. His brothers and sisters got tape before they went to their new homes, but since Rip was riding in a plane carrier, we didn't tape his ears. Megan showed me how; Carolyn gave me a lovely handout. How hard can it be?

Taped ears!

Not for long...

If I just scratch some more....

hmm... that doesn't look good.

Round one to Rip.

I tried a few more times.  A better job with the painter's tape.  Round two to Rip.  Painter's tape with Duct tape over it.  Round 3 to Rip.  Does he just have super-slick ears?  More likely just rookie mistakes.  I finally had success with masking tape w/ duct tape over it.  

Day two of taped ears - Happy even with tape!

Then the right ear started to flop - even in the tape.  So I took it off.  Here's where we are now:

One ear at 3/4 up.  One ear still needs work.

My question is where to go next?  Re-tape?  If so, should I use moleskin inside the ear to help it from not flopping over even in the tape?  Or do I just see if they come up on their own? 

Given my taping skills, maybe next time I should get a spaniel...


  1. Well, I'm afraid I can't offer advice in this area. I've been blessed with three Cardis all of whom had their ears come up on their own. Zoey's were up by 8 weeks, so were Rugby's. Riley's ears (which were ENORMOUS) took a bit longer. I think he was probably close to thirteen or fourteen weeks old before they would both stand up on their own all day long. He would have them up in the morning (when he had a bunch of energy) and then they'd droop by the end of the day. I vote for letting them try to come up on their own--they look like they are getting pretty close.

  2. Mom Hannah has pretty soft ears, and the puppies vary. Don't leave them to their own devices: we have had a couple of Alice kids who did not have tape whose ears did not come up.

    Try moleskin on the inside with duct tape over. Sometimes I even resort to just duct tape. The drawback is that it takes off more hair when you take off the tape (you can carefully cut it into pieces along the front and back of the ears before removing).

    I have to admit that the ears are one of my favorite parts of Kady. I've had to tape ears on just about every puppy I've had, with mixed results.

  3. I have had great luck with ears coming up on their own, but breeders who've needed to tape have told me that the light weight plastic or cardboard tubes from tampons glued to the inside of the ear with one of the skin-safe glues designed for protecting a wound, and then tape that is low between the ears -- not the crown that we usually make -- is very successful.

    Come on, Rip -- stick 'em up!

  4. Strait duct tape...if they are soft the moleskin can be too heavy. Hannah's were a nightmare to get up (one still flops when she runs). One puppy from the last litter never got up ears and Megan fought Greta's forever. Plus keep them in tape, leaving them down to flop can make the fold worse.

    Give him vit C as well.

  5. Definitely keep taping them, unless you don't mind flop ears.

    Biggest thing is to figure out what works and leave it on for as long as you can. 3-4 days is a minimum...then take off and if they still look at all floppy or foldy, retape pretty much immediately. I take the tape off expecting to put them right back up LOL...occasionally I'll give a couple hours of "freedom" if they are up but soft, but not more than that. And not if they are folding.

  6. Spencer's breeder told me to give him a big knuckle bone to chew and build up the muscles in his head.

  7. I'm rolling on the floor laughing. That Rip. Too cute. Sorry Mom, to me it doesn't matter where his ears end up.

  8. Thanks for all the ear advice. Today I've recruited a helper to re-tape the ears! I'll keep you posted.

  9. The expression on his face in that first picture is priceless. He is adorable. Keep working on those ears. Nobody ever said that is would be easy......I hope.

  10. pixel had huge soft ears, and I used just masking tape on Rita's advice- worked great, she couldn't get it off. I retaped them every few days when it started coming loose. Looking at her ears now I should have left the tape on longer but couldn't stand the tortured puppy look anymore. :)

    oh, and I had better luck with the really wide masking tape, vs. the small stuff. Seemed to stick better.


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