To Tape Or Not To Tape

Good question. Since broken down ears is a disqualification in our Chihuahua Standard we, as breeders, want to give a puppy having a difficult time with his ears every chance to get them up. Doing so is perfectly legal and this demonstration is merely one method of getting a chihuahuas' ears up and standing. There are many, many other methods that work, such as shaving all the hair off the back side of the ear -- but this method has been successful for us for many years. It does not seem to bother them after the first hour or so nor hurt them in anyway. If you are unsure, PLEASE CONTACT YOUR VET FIRST. We don't worry too much about ears until they are around 14 weeks of age.

Risen checking out the supplies. Looks simple enough he thinks! All that is needed is 3M Transpore tape, rubbing alcohol and Q-Tips or cotton balls. Before taping the ears, clean the ear leather with the Q-Tip or cotton balls moistened with the alcohol to dry up any oil on them that would prevent the tape from sticking really well. I do not shave any hair off the ears. Then let the ear air out a few minutes before applying the tape. NOTE: Transpore Tape is available at most drug stores in the first aide section. 3M uses latex in its glue so be sure to check your puppy's ears everyday for any redness or sensitivity.We have NEVER had a problem with it, but if redness or unnecessary irritation occurs on your puppy remove the tape immediately.

To begin, tear off about a 4 inch piece of 3M tape. When positioning the tape on the ear, make sure the tape seam will be in back of the ear. Also make sure the tape does not touch the corner of his ear, next to the top of his head. Doing so can make a sore there. Gently rub the tape onto the ear leather by placing your thumb on the inside of the ear and your three fingers on the outside of the ear until you can tell the tape is in place and will not move.

Next rap the remaining tape to that back side of the ear, making sure to pinch the edges of the tape between 1/8 or 1/4 inch from ears. I have provided both measurements so you can see the difference. DO NOT crease, cramp or crinkle the edge of the ear leather in any way -- doing so will cause irritation and an infection very quickly.

On the back of the ear you can leave 1/4 or 3/4 inch overlap in the tape seam, depending on the strength of the ear leather. The 3M tape is very easy to tear off any excess tape you have left after wrapping the tape around the ear. You want the tape to stay as light weight as possible.

From a side view of the ear, you can see how thin the tape is and why it really doesn't bother the puppies too much. After a couple of days they don't even notice it on there. In the meantime they are learning what it feels like to have their ears all the way up. Keep a very close watch on their ears everyday. Sometimes the oil in the dogs ear leather will loosen up the tape on the inside of the ear. As long as the tape edges on the back side are holding the tape on and the ear up, I'd won't bother redoing the whole tape process.

Ahhh -- Risen does not appear too impressed, but his ears will be up in a week or so and he'll never be bothered with this process again. I keep the ears taped up 3 days, then down for 1 day. Keep repeating the 3 days taped and 1 day not taped until the ears remain standing when not taped. If you have more than one puppy, keeping the puppies separated during this time is highly suggested. However, applying Bitter Apple is sometimes enough to discourage siblings from chewing on their taped siblings' ears. To remove the tape, just get the tape wet and it will come right off.

Taping Worked For Risen

Disclaimer:  We are not veterinarians. Anyone trying this
method releases Legend Chihuahuas from any and
all liability should they encounter
unsatisfactory results.

Longcoats can be taped the same way. However we like to shave the
the hair off the back and the inside of the ears, first.
If your lines are known for heavy ear leather, shave the hair
off before they are 9 weeks old, that way the hair will
grow back before it's time to show them.

Which Is Best For You, Puppy Or Adult?
Two Separate Varieties, LC and SC
What's Underneath That Bundle Of Fur?
Copyright Infringement Warning
A Bit Of Chihuahua History
So You Want To Breed?
Ears....To Tape Or Not To Tape
Getting Around The Dog Shows
Show Training Begins At Birth
Housebreaking Your Chihuahua
Is Teacup The Correct Term?
Chihuahua Growth Chart
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