Do You Crop Yorkies Ears? (Solved & Explained!)

Most Yorkshire Terriers have ears that stand up tall and pointy, which is one of the signatures of the breed that is recognised by breeding standards. Not all Yorkies have perky ears, however, and sometimes they have ears that flop forwards instead and some people will go to extreme lengths, like cropping, to achieve the iconic Yorkie look.

You should never crop the ears of your Yorkie, no matter how desperate you might be for them to stand up, because it is an unnecessary and arguably inhumane practice. There are other ways that you can try to help your Yorkie’s ears to start standing up by themselves, but floppy-eared Yorkies are beautiful exactly as they are!

This article will go into more detail about the practice of cropping a Yorkie’s ears, the other ways that people might get their Yorkie’s ears to stand up, and what other things people do to change the look of their Yorkie pup.

What Does it Mean to Crop a Yorkie’s Ears?

Cropping is a surgical procedure in which the floppy part of the Yorkie’s ear is cut away, leaving part of the ear behind. This is usually carried out on younger puppies, between 6 and 12 weeks old, and the remaining part of the ear is taped to a hard surface, so it stays upright after it has healed.

Why Do Some People Crop Yorkie Ears?

This procedure is usually carried out because people want their Yorkie to look the same way as others of the breed, with pointy ears that stick up above their head. Some breeders believe that it is part of maintaining the defining characteristics of a particular breed so that all of the pedigree dogs have the same recognisable look.

How Does Cropping Their Ears Affect a Yorkie?

Like any surgery, ear cropping is a risky procedure and, while the end result is unlikely to affect your dog’s hearing, it provides absolutely no benefit to the animal. Some people claim that it reduces the risk of ear infections but studies have shown that cropped breeds are no less likely to develop these than breeds with natural ears.

Should Yorkies Ears Stand Up or Flop Down?

While it is generally considered to be a characteristic of the breed, there is no reason why your Yorkie’s ears should sick up. The way that your dog’s ears hang is simply part of their unique and adorable features, and it does not affect their hearing or the quality of their life in any way, shape, or form.

Can Yorkie’s with Floppy Ears Be Shown at Dog Shows?

Currently, the American Kennel Club states that floppy-eared Yorkies do not meet the breed standard and they are not eligible to be shown at dog shows. This is likely to change though, as cropping and docking are becoming much more common for dogs from other breeds, such as schnauzers and boxers, at many different shows.

Can I Decide if My Yorkie’s Ears are Cropped or Not?

Often the practice of cropping is carried out by breeders before the dog is sold so, when purchasing through breeders, you might find your dog has cropped ears already. If you don’t want your dog to have their ears cropped, let the breeder know early on in the process so that they know not to carry out the procedure.

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Why Are My Yorkie’s Ears Down?

You might find that your Yorkie’s ears will flop down when they are suffering from stress or an illness, particularly when they are teething as puppies. The stress of teething and the pain of new teeth growing in their jaws uses up a lot of energy and can cause your puppy’s ears to flop forwards.

At What Age Should a Yorkie’s Ears Stand Up?

Usually, Yorkie’s ears start pricking up between the ages of 6 and 8 months, once they have finished teething and are starting to grow into themselves. This is not always the case, however, and your dog may take longer to grow into their look, by which time you will have fallen in love with however their ears might be.

Can I Make My Yorkie’s Ears Stand Up More Quickly?

There are more humane methods for making a Yorkie’s ears prick up if it is important to you that they do so. Massaging at the base of their ears is soothing and can encourage a strengthening of the ear muscles, shaving the hair on the tips can reduce the weight and taping is also an option.

How Does Taping Make a Yorkie’s Ears Stand Up?

Taping is the process of securing a Yorkie’s ears into a position where they are standing up to encourage the growth of muscles and cartilage at the base. Usually, this involves making little triangles out of tape to sit over the dog’s ears, and then taping them together so they are held in place.

What Should I Keep in Mind if I Want to Tape My Yorkie’s Ears?

Because you are likely to block the opening of the ear slightly, you want to carefully trim your Yorkie’s ears before you apply the tape to reduce the risk of infection. It is also not advisable to tape a Yorkie’s ears while they are still with the rest of the litter as the other puppies will pull it off.

What is Docking?

Docking is still a relatively common practice for Yorkshire Terrier puppies and involves the removal of a large part of the tail which would naturally stick up above the dog’s head. The procedure is usually carried out with surgical scissors or by wrapping a band around the tail until the end falls off due to a lack of blood.

Why Do Yorkies Have Their Tails Docked?

Docking has no benefits to the life of a dog and is usually carried out for aesthetic purposes, particularly when it is considered a characteristic of the breed. Despite it being purely superficial, many associations like the American Kennel Club and the Continental Kennel Club still require Yorkies to have docked tails when they are entering into dog shows.