There is a disturbing practice behind this increasingly popular look for puppies.
“Cropping”, or the practice of cutting off dogs’ ears, is illegal in the UK and parts of the US. But a new BBC survey has found that growing demand for dogs with this style is driving breeders to perform the cosmetic procedure anyway.
To achieve what a breeder described to an undercover reporter as the “striking” look for dogs of the American Bullies breed, part of the ear pin is removed. The look may seem adorable to some owners, but animal rights activists say the surgery can cause physical and psychological damage to dogs, hence its ban under UK Animal Welfare Act.
âWhenever celebrities post something online, people inevitably think, ‘Oh, that dog looks nice. Maybe I’ll get one like this, âsaid Vanessa Waddon of the Hope Rescue charity. She has called “Love Island” Jack Fincham, singer Leigh-Anne Pinnock and football player Marcus Rashford as stars who have posted pictures of dogs that appear to have their ears cut off. “While [the celebrities] may have imported the dogs legally, there are people cropping illegally in the UK to meet the demand.
In the United States, cropping is illegal in nine states and is only permitted by a “licensed veterinarian while the dog is under anesthesia” in Connecticut, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, and New York. Pennsylvania, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
But the procedure is a “mutilation” made exclusively “for the statute.” There is no health benefit to these dogs, âBritish Veterinary Association former president Daniella Dos Santos told the BBC.
“Some animals then develop infections or don’t like people touching their ears,” Paula Boyden of the Dogs Trust group told the BBC. “We have also seen behavioral issues because dogs communicate with their ears, and without them they may have difficulty doing so with their owners or other dogs.”