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Old 24th May 2005, 02:10 PM
Chandler's Avatar
Boxer Buddy
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: USA/Long Beach, CA
Posts: 53
Question How old is too old to dock a pup's tail?

Rex is almost a year old, at least that's what I think; everytime he goes to the vet, he's diagnosed as being younger than the time before (I know a lot of people who would like to have that 'problem" :-)

That aside, if any of you have looked at Rex's picture, you've seen that he has quite a tail; it's actually more of a weapon than a tail. My question is: at what age (if any) is a pup too old to have his tail docked?

I ask, because his tail is most always wagging 100 miles an hour (OK, i've never actually clocked the speed), and he regularly knocks things over and breaks them. The 'tail of death' (as my friends have begun to call it) also hurts/stings when it whacks people.

Of course, if it weren't for the damage incurred and pain inflicted, I would think his wagging is great, because he's so happy and enthusiastic about everything ... it most always makes me smile.

I've had Rex for almost 3 months now (time flies) and normally wouldn't change anything about him, but this tail thing is starting to become a problem. Any advice out there about turning Rex's TMD (tail of mass-destruction) into a happy & peaceful nub? Please advise...
Chandler here; Rex is my Teufelhund (USMC Devil-pup); brindle w/white markings, Boxer/Lab pup.

Oohrah! Wag wag wag...
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Old 24th May 2005, 02:40 PM
Boxer Booster
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Delaware
Posts: 171
I have a boxer from a shelter with a tail. I know exactly what you mean. That tail is really a weapon, it hurts!!! But, at this point, docking the tail would be like taking off a limb, it is a major surgery. I don't agree with it for cosmetic or convienence reasons, so I have just learned to love her tail, and do my best to stay out of the way (and keep things of importance out of the tails range). Good luck!

Old 24th May 2005, 03:46 PM
magoo's_mama's Avatar
Super Boxer
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Fort Drum, New York
Posts: 465
My boxer's tail was docked at 6 months, this was not by my choice it was done a few days before I adopted him.
From my personal experience I would not put your dog through that kind of amputation unless somehow his health was in question.
He was unable to sit on his rump for a long period of time (over a month) because of the pain and had to wear an e-collar for two weeks so he would not rip out the stitches.
~ Sunny

Old 24th May 2005, 04:41 PM
Chandler's Avatar
Boxer Buddy
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: USA/Long Beach, CA
Posts: 53
Thumbs up Sounds like the tail of mass destruction is a keeper...

Well ... I guess the jury is in; obviously, Rex's TMD is here to stay. Thanks all, for your input!

Old 24th May 2005, 04:42 PM
Boxer Insane
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Utah
Posts: 2,139
I agree with everyone else. Unless you dog injures his tail in such a manner that it needs to be amputated, you really are better off not doing it. It causes them a LOT of pain at this point is is much harder to get to heal etc. At 3 days old the babies nerous sytems and skeletal systems have not fully developed so when they amputate it then it really doesn't affect them like doing it later, also it is such a small wound it heals easily. Later in life it has full bone structure and nerves and really is like cutting off a limb in terms of pain and difficutly with healing. Just keep everything out of tail height! LOL

Old 24th May 2005, 04:42 PM
stormie0734's Avatar
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 326
Red face

My rottie has his tail and when we got his dewclaws removed we asked about the tail docking and they said it would be an amputation and if he is a bleeder it could be dangerous. So we decided to have it be their decision as to weather or not to dock it. So we dropped him off not knowing how we would look when we picked him up. When I picked him up he still had his tail and they said he bled pretty bad just on dews. And that even if they did do it you take a big chance of them mutalating it themselves.

I personally like his tail it gives him personality and I am the only one in the neighborhood with a rottie who has a tail and I like that!

Enjoy your babies tail I know they are weapons but they give them alot of personality and they are unique.
Ares -flashy fawn,dob 02-24-05
Kodiak-Rottweiler,dob 07-04-2000
and 2 skin kids Dakota-9 and Alannah-7

Old 24th May 2005, 04:47 PM
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Location: United Kingdom
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I think you would have trouble finding a vet willing to perform an amputation on a dog without a medical reason. I certainly hope you would.

Docking is normally done at 2-3 days old before the nervous system is fully developed. Beyond that age, it is a full amputation and very painful for the dog. Unless there is a medical reason for amputating his tail, I think you should just leave it alone.
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