It’s Been Five Months And My Puppy’s Ears Aren’t Fully Up What Gives
Just like every human is unique, all German Shepherds are as well. Sometimes it can be up to eight months before your German Shepherds ears will erect on their own.
Also, dont fret if other litter mates already have risen ears. Each puppy in every litter is an individual, and theyre also growing at different paces. So just because your German Shepherd puppy doesnt have straight ears at five months doesnt mean they’ll be floppy forever.
German Shepherd Ear Infection Home Remedies
Home remedies provide for cheap and readily available means of getting rid of ear infections in your dog. Here are some that could work for your dog.
- Olive oil and garlic: Garlic is kind of a natural antibiotic because of its antiviral and antifungal properties. The oil has a soothing property in the dogs ears. Drop one or two drops of the mixture into the infected ears.
- Boric acid + distilled vinegar: Soak isopropyl alcohol sheets into this mixture, squeeze out any excess fluids and use the sheets to wipe the ears. This solution kills fungus, mites, and bacteria.
- Colloidal Silver: Drop a couple of drops into the affected ear.
But Perhaps The Biggest Factor Is Environment And Upbringing
Like always with a dog, you have to be prepared beforehand, or you will have to play catch up later!
- A German Shepherd Dogs ears can be easily damaged from fighting, playing and pulling! The damage can be from other puppies and dogs and young children, usually by accident. Never let anyone even other dogs to fold, bend, pull, fondle, or play with your German Shepherds ears. There is some research that suggests that massaging the base of the ears and not the ears themselves can help as this can increase blood flow to the cartilage.
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Will My Puppys Ears Stay Floppy
All puppies are born with their ears flat against their head. Between 4 and 7 months of age, if your puppy is meant to have prick ears, they will usually stick up. It can take up to a year for a puppys ears to stand. Some puppys ears stay floppy forever, even if prick ears are characteristic of their breed.
When To Stop Taping Their Ears
At 9 months old your German Shepherds ear should stand on their own, without the ear taping or other measures.
If your German Shepherd puppy is 9 months old and their ears still flop over, please see your vet for further assistance.
This could mean your dogs ear might permanently stay flopping and fold over and isnt anything to worry about.
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Feed A Healthy Diet And Supplements
Always check with your veterinarian before altering your dogs diet or adding any supplements.
You should always focus on feeding your dog with high-quality food. Food is the number one thing you can do to increase and maintain your dogs overall health. A healthy dog will also have stronger cartilage, making it more likely that their ears will become pointy as they get older.
On top of feeding your dog well, you can also supplement their diet if they have some sort of deficiency :
Adding glucosamine to your German Shepherds diet is often prescribed to dogs with arthritis because it helps maintain and build cartilage in joints. Glucosamine can also help strengthen the cartilage in your dogs ears, encouraging them to stand upright.
You can get them as chews, treats, or as a liquid that you add to your dogs food. Check out YuMove Hip and Joint Supplement Chews on Amazon. From independent studies, they are proven to work in just 6 weeks.
Add Vitamin C
Vitamin C can also help build up your dogs cartilage and encourage his ears to perk up. You can add Vitamin C to your puppys diet through either vitamin supplements or through natural foods. Do not give your puppy citrus fruits as they can cause stomach upset, vomiting, and diarrhea as they contain high amounts of citric acid.
However, if you definitely wanted to go down the supplement route, you can get a good multivitamin that contains both glucosamine and Vitamin C.
Dont Add Calcium!
When Do German Shepherds Ears Start To Stand Up
German Shepherd puppies ears usually become erect between four and seven months old. You can reasonably expect erect ears by around eight months old.
Some puppies ears might start to go up before four months as well.
Dont be surprised if your puppy has erect ears that flop when teething starts. This is because calcium that would generally nourish the ears is reallocated to the teeth during this time.
You can expect the ears to become erect after the teething stops, around 20 weeks.
After a puppy is no longer teething, they will start retaining enough cartilage in the ears to help hold them up. GSDs ears are heavier than they appear, and the cartilage must be sufficient to help keep that position.
A sign of ears likely to stay erect are ears that become pointy once they start to stand. Its reasonable to see some movement up and down after this point until they become permanently straight.
If your puppy reaches four or five months without any sign of the ears standing up, you might need to give them some help.
When the ears are not erect by around seven or eight months, they will more than likely retain a floppy position.
Ear Infection In German Shepherds
German Shepherds like most dogs are prone to Otitis Media and Otitis Interna which are common types of ear infections. Longer eared dogs are more prone to ear infections than shorter eared dogs. Symptoms of ear infection are pawing at the ear, shaking their head, pain when opening their mouth.
The best treatment for ear infections in German Shepherds is antibiotics which work most of the time. It should help reduce symptoms in a few days and cure the ear infection in less than 2 weeks. Routine ear cleaning can help prevent ear infections as well.
German Shepherd Ear Mites
The common type of ear mites that may take residence in your German Shepherd is the eight-legged Otodectes Cynotis. It feeds on the oils and waxes found in the dogs ear canal. It causes intense ear irritation and inflammation and continues to spread if proper measures are not taken. A characteristic dark discharge from the ears is a sign of the advanced stage of the infection.
The parasites are commonly found in outdoor cats and are passed from pet to pet as they interact. In case your dog shows the signs of this ear infection, it is critical to consult your vet immediately. Doing self-diagnosis is foolhardy and should not be attempted.
Certain bacterial infections mimic the symptoms of mites infection. It is only your vet who can come up with the right diagnosis after performing tests on the discharges. The right treatment will also be given to the dog.
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Taping German Shepherd Ears
Taping is by far the most common practice when it comes to correcting German Shepherd ears. Recommended by vets and breeders, taping is a painless and non-surgical approach that should get your dogs ears to perk up.
Please note, while taping can help your dogs ears to stand up, it cant beat genetics, and might not always work. So if you dont see any change after some time, you should stop and just accept your dog the way he is, floppy ears and all.
When Should I Tape My German Shepherds Ears
You shouldnt tape your German Shepherds ears because taping rarely works when the problem is a genetic one. However, if you want to try taping your German Shepherds ears, then you shouldnt do it any earlier than a year after theyre born.
You need to give your puppy plenty of time to grow and build the cartilage in their ears naturally. Taping prematurely may damage their ears.
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Your German Shepherds Ears
Anyone who remembers Rin Tin Tin, the canine hero of 1950s television, recalls that famous German Shepherds regal silhouette head erect, muscular body ready for action and, most notably, ears standing straight up. But as many shepherd owners learn, it can take a while for pups to acquire that signature pointy-eared look.
While the floppy ears of a playful pup are cute, you may wonder if your shepherds ears will ever stand up. If he is a mixed breed, youll have to wait and see.
If youve seen them up, theyll stay up.
Most breeders and veterinarians will tell you that floppy ears are common while your German Shepherd is teething, which usually ends between 16 and 20 weeks. By then, the cartilage in the ear has become hard and strong enough for the ear to stand permanently.
During the teething months, you might notice the ears going up naturally for a day or two, or when your dog barks, gets excited, or hears a sudden noise. If youve seen the ears go up on their own for any amount of time during that first five months, you can be pretty sure that they will stand permanently when the teething period is over.
Keep an eye on his ears
If the ears of your German Shepherd are not erect after his fifth month, and this is the look you desire, you may want to contact your veterinarian or breeder. Between the 5th and 7th month the ear cartilage is still soft enough to encourage the ear into an upright position. By the 8th month, the ears will usually take on their adult form.
What Else Can I Do To Make German Shepherd Ears Stand Up
There are many things you can try to help your German Shepherds ears to stand up. However, be patient and give your dog time to finish teething and develop properly before you pull out the big guns and start taping his ears.
Be vigilant and dont allow other dogs or children to play rough with your Shepherds ears. No one should pull, bite, or squeeze your pups ears while they are still developing.
Furthermore, start caring about your dogs ears from a young age. You should check the ears weekly for dirt and waxy buildup, and gently clean them with a cotton ball when necessary.
And as always, whenever in doubt, talk with your vet and see if there is something else you can do to help your pups ears to stand up. If despite all your efforts your German Shepherds ears havent perked up till nine months of age, they most likely never will.
In the end, having a healthy and happy German Shepherd is more important than the way his ears are.
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German Shepherd Ear Health
Like all other purebred dogs, German Shepherds are prone to certain genetic health problems. This breed doesnt suffer from any inherited ear problems, however German Shepherds that have allergies can experience recurring ear infections.
If this is the case, the most important thing is to discover the allergen and limit your dogs exposure to it. By doing so, you will also minimize the chance of painful ear infections.
Why Do German Shepherds Move Their Ears
Before we get into specific German Shepherd ear positions that indicate different emotions, we have to address why dogs move their ears. Unlike human ears, dogs ears are controlled by voluntary muscles. In other words, their ear movements arent involuntary reactions but instinctual attempts at communication. So, why do German Shepherds move their ears?
German Shepherds move their ears to different positions mainly to indicate interest, submissiveness, or hostility. Several subtle movements indicate more complex emotions, and sometimes various emotions overlap in terms of their corresponding ear position.
You should look at your dogs ear position alongside other body language and behavior cues in the context of his environment when deciding why he is behaving a certain way. If you go by ear positions alone, you might reach the wrong conclusion as each position has at least two explanations.
In the sections below, we will look at the general possibilities for each position your dog puts his ears. You will also learn a few other metrics to determine which one of the possibilities is the actual reason behind the dogs ear movement.
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Poor Nutrition During Puppyhood
As mentioned above, calcium is needed to develop and strengthen the cartilage in the ears in order for them to stand up. Vitamin D is also needed to keep bones healthy and strong. If a dog was deficient in vitamin D and/or calcium as a pup, their ears may not develop properly, and they could flop permanently as a result. This is especially common in rescue dogs that come from puppy farms, homelessness, and neglectful backgrounds.
Other symptoms of calcium and vitamin D deficiencies include muscle spasms and joint issues. If severe, nutrient deficiencies can be deadly. Malnutrition, in general, can also be deadly and should be obviously identifiable by looking at a dogs body in terms of weight or lack thereof. Both conditions require urgent veterinary attention, and treatments will likely include special diets and supplements.
Ways To Fix Floppy German Shepherd Puppies Ears
This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I get compensated if you buy through these links this is at no extra cost to you. You can read my full disclosure here.
I receive a lot of questions from worried GSC readers and from the clients I work with about floppy German Shepherd puppies ears.
Since it’s such an important topic, I decided to address this issue in a post to answer all the questions. And give tips on how to solve this problem all in one place.
One of the most distinctive features of the German Shepherd Dog is their signature pointy ears. It’s part of what gives them their regal looks and is a symbol of the alertness they are famous for.
Of course, the German Shepherd isn’t born with upright ears. When they’re born, their ears are floppy and over time, as they grow, their ears develop.
And eventually, the cartilage perks up giving them their signature pointy structure.
So it’s only natural for German Shepherd owners like you to want the best for your German Shepherd’s ears.
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Will A German Shepherd Lab Mix Ears Stand Up
According to Canine Weekly, its possible that your German Shepherd and Labrador mix may have pointed ears. It depends on what gene the puppy inherits. You have a 50/50 chance if the parents were a German Shephard and Labrador. If you have a second or third-generation puppy that comes from two mixed parents, then the chance may be lower or higher depending on their own genetics.
If your dog does inherit the gene for pointed ears, then they may favor their German Shepherd side.
German Shepherds Ears Are Still Floppy At 9 Months
Does your German Shepherd still have floppy ears at 9 months? If so then this could be a cause for concern if that matters to you. Most of the time German Shepherd ears should be up at 8 to 9 months, yes genetics can be at play can delay or even prevent their ears from standing up.
Remember you can still have a full blood German Shepherd that just happens to have floppy ears.
If this is the case then you should definitely begin more drastic measures such as taping and surgery, only if ears standing up is important to you. The main reason people think it is important is if they plan on showing or breeding their dog which could cause a problem in those unique areas.
Personally, I would not worry about it and rather make sure my dog is happy and healthy above their ears standing up. Luckily this is a rare situation anyways.
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What Does A Floppy Ear On A Dog Mean
Floppy ears, for example, may look adorable on dogs and rabbits, but they actually are a result of malformed ear cartilage. An animal hoping to hear well isnt going to benefit from having the ear flopped down alongside its face. Domesticated animals even have smaller brains than their wild counterparts.
Proper Diet & Nutrition:
Cheap, commercial food could be the culprit if your puppys ears refuse to stand. Make sure youre feeding high-quality dog food.
Its worth noting that some people recommend using supplements for your puppies to help with their ears. However, this isnt necessarily a good idea.
For example, many people think calcium will boost those ears but it can also have a negative effect on your pups joints and bones, causing permanent skeletal problems. Its just not worth the risk!
Stick to a high-quality, natural diet instead. Some ideas for foods that may help boost your pups ears include cottage cheese, yogurt, and chicken feet. Cottage cheese and yogurt both have plenty of calcium , and chicken feet are a natural source of glucosamine, which helps strengthen cartilage.
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