According to the breed standard, the ears of a Yorkshire terrier should be small and standing. But not all puppies, for whatever reason, have ears that rise in time. And while pet owners don’t always care about this, owners of promising show puppies always worry when their dog’s ears don’t rise. And they can be understood: weak ear cartilage in a Yorkie is considered a serious drawback, and if the ears are hanging, it can even cause lifelong disqualification of the dog and its exclusion from breeding.
How do I get my Yorkies ears to stand up?
Normally, the ears of Yorkshire puppies rise at 2-2.5 months. Later, after vaccination or during a tooth change, they may sag or even fall completely, but later they will normally get back up again. The deadline for a Yorkie to get his ears back up is 4 months. If they continue to hang at this age, then measures must be taken to make sure that they do not get up, otherwise, they may never get up again.
Why Don’t a Yorkie’s Ears Stand Up?
There are many reasons why a Yorkshire terrier can’t get his ears up. The most common of them are:
- Inheritance. Until 1990, the standard for Yorkshire terriers was half-hanging ears. The puppy may have been affected by the genes of some of his great-grandfather’s, who at the time was considered a standard, pedigree dog, despite his ears not fully set.
- His ears were too heavy due to the abundance of hair that was growing on them.
- Thin ear cartilage that did not keep the ears upright.
- Tooth changes: even ears that are already well established can fall at this age.
- Puppy-borne diseases.
Of all the reasons mentioned above, heredity is probably the worst option, as in this case, owners will either have to accept that their dog’s ears will remain hanging for life, or have plastic surgery, which is also highly undesirable when it comes to a show dog.
What if ears will not stand up?
If your puppy’s ears aren’t lifting, the first thing to do is to find out why. The easiest way to solve the problem is if your puppy’s ears are overcoat: it’s simply cut with scissors or a trimmer and you can do it yourself without having to go to the groomer.
If it’s the weak ear cartilage, then if time isn’t wasted, you can fix it by giving your puppy special supplements, including those containing glucosamine and chondroitin.
It’s only advisable to consult with your vet before buying them, who will be able to help you choose the most suitable formula and calculate the correct dosage for your puppy.
NOTE: Feeding, but already high in calcium and phosphorus, will also help if your ears don’t get up or fall during a tooth replacement or vaccination.
It’s also better to take supplements that are specially formulated for ornamental dogs. After illness and stress your puppy has endured, the owner needs to be especially attentive to his pet.
Feeding, a good diet rich in minerals and vitamins, regular walks and a caring attitude can also improve the situation and eventually his ears will rise.
Feeding and proper nutrition don’t always help, so it’s useful to combine it with an ear cartilage massage. You’ll need to place your index finger inside your puppy’s ear, not too deep, and your thumb on the outside of the cartilage.
With gentle circular movements, each ear should be massaged and as if pulled from the base to the tip. It is recommended to massage the ears several times a day – the more often the better.
How do you make a puppy’s ears stand up?
In order to put your puppy’s ears on, specialists recommend using the sticker method.
- This method requires a band-aid in a roll (better on a silk base), as well as a pair of scissors and a shearing machine or trimmer.
- Before starting the procedure, your puppy will need to be washed and dried and then properly secured, for example by wrapping him in a towel or using an assistant.
- Then you should remove his coat as much as possible from the entire surface of the ear, otherwise, the Band-Aid will not stick. Each Yorkshire ear is then rolled up into a tube, but the ear canal remains open.
- Each of the ears rolled up into the tube is wrapped up with a Band-Aid, which should be glued carefully: do not tighten too tightly and so that no folds are formed.
- At the end of the procedure, the ears are fixed vertically: they are glued together using the same adhesive plaster when they are raised.
- At the same time, a small distance should be left between them so that the ears are kept strictly vertical.
- The puppy should walk with his ears rolled up in tubes and fixed for no longer than three days, after which the structure should be removed by dampening the adhesive plaster with vegetable oil.
- If this hasn’t helped to lift his ears, after a while the procedure should be repeated, perhaps more than once.
Ears gluing by the folding method
- There is another way to put the ears together. This is done using the same preliminary procedures as the previous method: i.e. the york must be washed, dried, fixed and cut or his ears shaved.
- After that, each of the ears is folded in half of its length, but so that no fractures or folds are formed. The two halves of the ears are joined together at the top of the head and wrapped with adhesive tape.
- This design is also worn for three days, then it must be removed and after a few days of rest, repeated if the ears have not risen.
- This procedure may have to be done several times in order to get the desired result.
The most gentle way to set Yorkie ears
Specialists believe that the most painless method for a pet is sticking with a stick. In this case, the tension at the edges of the ears is minimal, which certainly causes less discomfort to the dog than the two methods described above.
In order to stick this method on a Yorkshire ear you will need the same tools and in addition two cotton buds: one for each ear.
- The tips of the sticks should be cut off so that their total length is a little less than the length of the ear.
- Next, four pieces of adhesive tape are cut off: their length should be longer than the height of the stick, but not longer than the ear.
- Then each stick is put on one piece of adhesive plaster and glued on top with the second one. T
- he construction is placed in the puppy’s ear, but not too deep and then fixed with another piece of adhesive tape.
IMPORTANT: Also, instead of using cotton buds, you can use a piece of scotch tape which has been rolled up several times. This option is recommended when a puppy has very weak cartilage and cotton swabs are too heavy for him.
This type of scotch should not be worn for more than a week. After seven days, it should be removed and if it doesn’t work, repeated after a while.
Dogs will usually quickly get used to having this attached to their ears and very soon they will simply stop paying attention.
If your puppy initially gets worried and tries to rip off the Band-Aid with the sticks attached to it, he could be distracted by a walk or a game.
You can also put a socket collar on the Yorkie for a while to keep your dog from reaching his head and ripping off the structure.
What about plastic surgery?
In case mechanical methods of ears setting did not help, you can try to lift the ears with plastic surgery. But you have to remember that this is a very painful procedure for the dog.
WARNING! You don’t have to get upset and give up if your puppy’s ears are not up by the age of four months.
- You should try to lift them using mechanical staging techniques.
- Most often, as a result of one of these measures, or as a combination of them, the desired result can be achieved.
- It is necessary to remember that any operation is a risk and how justified it should be decided by the owner of the dog.