Tail-docking on a Shih Tzu?

I was just a little puzzled as I went to a shelter to adopt a Shih Tzu that was available, after I had to have mine put down a while ago. When I saw this little 11 month old male Shis Tzu, I immediatly fell in love with the little guy, but there was one strange thing….I noticed that his tail had been docked! I mean this wasn't a problem for me, but I've never seen it done on a Shih Tzu before. I've seen it on other breeds (Boxers, Pit Bulls, Dobies, Old English Sheep Dogs, etc. Can anyone tell me if this a common practice, and what is the purpose of it?

It is not common. Perhaps there was a medical reason like a fungus? or perhaps the previous owners were just nasty and cruel. Unless there is a medical problem, there is no reason to bob tails or dock ears.

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7 Responses to “Tail-docking on a Shih Tzu?”

  1. Rey S says:

    No, it's not common practice to dock a tail on a Shih Tzu. It could have been done for any number of reasons: injury, ignorance, possibly even born without a tail. I have seen lots of the "designer" Shih Tzu mixes with docked tails, especially the poodle mixes. They can look just like one or the other parent breed, maybe he is something like that?
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  2. rollin_indahay says:

    It isn't a common practice with Shih Tzus. You have to realize, often when a shelter gets a dog in, all they have to go on is an educated guess as to what breed or what the "majority" breed appears to be. It could perhaps be one of those all the rage "designer dogs" like a ShihPoo or something, and the 'breeder' chose to dock the tail as they would with a poodle.

    Hard to say why, really…..but no, Shih Tzus don't usually have docked tails.
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  3. Black kitten says:

    No, its not a common practice.
    Tail-docking is a cruel and purposeless procedure that is said to have originated in Old England. Working dogs had their tails docked so that the animals they herded wouldn't bite them. There were luxury taxes on pet dogs, but not on working dogs, so people started docking all of their dog's tails.

    Today there is almost no reason for docking a dog's tail. Some AKC breeds are hard or impossible to show if their tails are intact (there are people working hard to change this standard). This is, in my opinion, the only legitimate reason for docking, and it isn't even a very good reason.

    People will say "if my dog's tail weren't docked, he may wag it so much it would get bloody and infected". I don't accept this argument. It's basically like saying you should amputate your limbs because you may break them one day.

    The docking procedure itself is sickening even to hear about. At only a couple of days old, the puppies are removed from the room their mother is in so that she can't hear their screams, and the procedure is performed. They are given back to her bandaged and bleeding.

    People who support docking say it should be done very early in life, or else it will be immensely painful for the dog. The flaw in this argument is that infant puppies feel pain just as intensely as older dogs. If everyone agrees that it's too cruel to do it later in life, that means it's too cruel to be done anytime in life.
    References :
    http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/4419

  4. Sam J says:

    Docking goes back a long way and is normally associated with dogs used for fighting or hunting. The tail provides an easy target for opponent or prey and can be messy if damaged. It was considered easier to remove the tail as a pup to avoid complications later.
    Once this became normal practice, judging at shows demanded this of breeds that were regularly docked.
    Now there has been a change in policy (at least in UK) and it is no longer recommended to dock tails. Dogs of all breeds are now being shown with and without tails.
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  5. yrdelusional says:

    The breed is *NOT* docked!
    Ever read the BREED STANDARD???

    But then,you doubtless didn't GET a "real" dog,bred by a reputable breeder;you got a MUTT/MONGREL!
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  6. iluvtorofl says:

    It is not common. Perhaps there was a medical reason like a fungus? or perhaps the previous owners were just nasty and cruel. Unless there is a medical problem, there is no reason to bob tails or dock ears.
    References :

  7. mustlovedogs says:

    NO. this is my personal breed of choice and I ADORE them. have two right now. they are never tail docked. perhaps this poor dog was in need of medical attention it did not receive, was the object of abuse in a former home or belonged to an idiot, or came from a puppy mill… oh wait that would fall under belongs to an idiot.

    It would not in any way, deter this lil one from being a loving companion, if u commit to helping him adjust to you and your home. If he exhibits true Tzu personality, then you would be in for a wonderful love affair! Good Luck!
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