Docking A Rottweiler’s Tail: AKC Says Yes But Should You Go For It?

The two things that make us fall in love with a dog is their appealing face and their endearing tail. At times a dog tells us more with their tail than through their face. It is their prime means of communication and conveys everything from friendliness to fear and aggression.

Rottweilers generally have their tails docked but there are many who prefer them with their tails. If you have been thinking about docking your Rottweiler‘s tail, first give this a read:

The Reasons For Docking A Rottweiler’s Tail

There are several reasons for docking a Rottweiler’s tail. Historically, it was essential to prevent injuries. They are working dogs and had to face the uncertainties of a rigorous physical life. Tail docking also reduced the weak spots in a fighting dog. It was also thought to reduce the danger of them contracting rabies.

READ: Rottweilers Historical Facts

Tail docking is still widely prevalent today and the reasons may be one of the above or something purely cosmetic. Even the American Kennel Club includes a docked tail in the Rottweiler breed standards.

It is pertinent to note that docking a Rottweiler’s tail is banned in the country of its origin, Germany. Even Norway, Turkey and the Netherlands have banned docking, preventive or cosmetic.

If done properly, there are arguments that favor docking but there are several points to note before you start snipping.

docking a Rottweiler’s tail
docking a Rottweiler’s tail

Is It Cruel?

While cutting off a part can never be painless, some methods can make it less painful for the puppies. Some recommend it to be done with 3 days of their birth. But the strength of the pup should be considered. Getting it performed by a non-professional may result in injuries.

Reasons To Dock

Some people prefer a Rottweiler without a tail and as long as it is legal, nobody can question them. They are not used to seeing a Rottweiler with a tail and argue that a Rottweiler with a wagging tail isn’t the real deal.

Some have a valid reason to go in for docking as it is believed to reduce or avoid injuries. This was validated by a study by the University of Glasgow. It proves that docking a dog’s tail saves them from many injuries but the study referred to working dog breeds. For instance, guard dogs are at danger of their tails being grabbed, while hunting dogs do get injured in dense undergrowth. In many cases, this is also true for non-working dogs that are otherwise physically active.

A modern reason is the issue of hygiene. It gets into the messiest of places. A dog with a hyperactive tail will also keep knocking over things. Some people believe that docked dogs are equally adept at communicating but it has not been proven. But there are those who prefer to follow approved breeding standards.

docking a Rottweiler’s tail
docking a Rottweiler’s tail

Keeping The Rottweiler’s Tail

Some people prefer a docked tail for its looks while it is a preventive measure against injuries and infections for others. A reason for retaining a tail is that docking does not endow a Rottweiler with any special prowess. Docking does not enhance their speed and stamina. We bring home a dog for the love and camaraderie and their tail should not be an issue.

READ: 10 Different Ways Your Rottweiler Can Stare At You And Its Meaning

Docking a Rottweiler’s tail is also an expensive proposition. But the foremost argument for not docking a Rottweiler’s tail remains that it is a convenient tool for the dog to convey happiness, distress, and excitement. It is also a reliable way to know when the Rottweiler is aggressive or frightened.

With or without a tail, your Rottie deserves all the love you can give. They surely don’t hold back their emotions! Go give your good boy/girl some boops!


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