kato age two

Tell-Tail Signs

Heres the Animal Welfare Bill in its entirety


 - as entire as all those beautiful, expressive  tails are going to have to be in the future.  Unless I am reading it wrong, it also includes the cruel ugly spectacle that is Crufts and other dog "showing" horrorfests. They are going to have to rethink their breed standards and have dogs who can communicate. And what will those dogs say? Will it be "I love it here me?"

When Little Abe was a pup, the vet said she had a heavy tail for her size and in the future there may be a case for Medical Docking . Shiver! Apart from the damage to various crockery, tumblers,spillages of beer and assorted paperwork, Abes tail remains a glorious wagging semaphore of her mood. Little Abe still chases her tail when her dinner is served (aka The Mungry Dance)

kAt0's tail is a Las Vegas plume of joyous exhilaration and occaisionally a tense warning of nervousness that doesn't show on her face. kAt0's tail is a diary of where she has been, with leaves, mud and foliage. When kAt0 spies a fit boy dog, her tail is lifted in a sassy (tho embaressing) display of tartyness. Java's tail is a relaxed wag of contentment, but also can be a sharp, machine like wag of fear and impending attack. When Java is cold she snuggles into a Winter Ball of Dog , with her tail accross her snooter - this means turn the heating up. 

I also disapprove of 'cosmetic' docking. However my sister breeds hunting dogs (German Shorthaired Pointers) and is a strong advocate of docking in working breeds. Note the term 'breeds' not 'dogs'. Whether a GSP is working (i.e. hunting) or not, you just have to watch one crashing through the undergrowth to realise how easily a full tail would be damaged. As for the cummunication aspect - all the docked dogs i know are just as communicative as the undocked ones. The GSP's all have a 3-4 inch stub, which they can wag, but Meg, who's a staffie-boxer cross and is completely docked (before she was rescued by her current owners....) still communicates very effectively.
"all the docked dogs i know"

I think this is the key to my belief in keeping the tails. All the docked dogs I have had chance to get to know - I see as just as expressive. Its just easier to guage a stranger dogs mood if they have tail.

I do get pissed off at Crufts type showing though, the dogs never going to have the joy of crashing through some undergrowth, just stand on a table and have their nuts fondled.

Some dogs enjoy it, some don't. My sister's GSP's get to do both, but theyre only shown if they enjoy it. Rosie, who was probably the best show dog she's bred so far, hated shows and so wasn't shown. I've been to crufts a lot, and 99% of the dogs there are very happy (there are always exceptions to the rule, but if a dog is obviously distressed, the owner is contacted and they are usualy disqualified by the vet)
Unsurprisingly, I'm also pleased to see this coming in. Never been a fan of the "working dog" exemption. Given that docking's supposed to be done before their eyes open, how do you know if it'll be a working dog?

The argument for tail damage doesn't seem to hold either, given that hounds aren't docked, foxes aren't docked, retrievers, etc...

As far as I read it, it will still be possible for a vet (should they choose to) to dock dogs that are a hunt point retriever type or crossbreed, Spaniel type or crossbreed or Terrier type or crossbreed. However there will be a higher standard of evidence required that it will actually be a working dog and they must all be registered and microchipped.

Docked breeds won't be showable at Crufts unless the dog is a certified working dog an is shown only for the purpose of demonstrating its working ability.

Obviously the AWA also helps animal welfare in general.
Meeting an undocked rotty at Kato's rescue really made me see the light in how differently it gave to my whole perspective of the dog.

And Java's tail has been the give away before she attempts to murder Abe. No teeth baring, no gum showing, no bum fur up - just the strangest wag.
I am so glad about this, I really wish Penny had all of her tail, I think she'd get into fewer tiffs, as it is with floppy ears and no tail she is short on signalling gear.

And I can't say I am convinced by the working type dog arguement, I have not seen any figures comparing the rate of injury in docked and undocked dogs, until I do and they show overwhelming proof that docking significantly reduces serious injury I will remain against it. It _may_ be that in the past docking was the best option when there was no real care available for injured dogs, but that is not true now. The use of docking in the working community dates to well before there were vets of the ability that are available in all communities these days. To my mind you could as well argue that dogs shouldn't keep their feet because sometimes they cut their pads.
Yes, I think some of Abe and Kato's filthy looks at Penny have been because she doesn't do regular dog speak.....

and elbowing to the front of the biscuit queue probably doesn't help either.

Do dogs have elbows?