What an interesting thread!
I think for me, the most interesting bit was Duckzilla's arguement. I personally think it was flawed, for the reasons Michelle stated (all wild dogs have prick ears). I've never thought about that aspect of ears (form and function), and have to say that, while I still do not support cropping (which I'll get to), a prick ear is certainly more "natural", and I wonder if dogs with cropped ears have slightly better hearing? Maybe we should start breeding all breeds to have prick ears?
As for my position on cropping, as I've said many times, I don't support it. All my arguements against it have been stated by others:
-painful, unnecessary, risk of anesthetic, etc.
-mutilation for fashion
HOWEVER, that said, I'm certainly not on the judgemental, anti-cropping crusade I was on a year or so ago
. Is it something I would do? no. In a perfect world, where everyone was perfect pet owners, there was no animal cruelty, pet overpopulation, etc., I'd be making a rip-roaring stink about it. But as Jmann said, there are much bigger issues at hand. If your crop your dog but are a responsible owner in other ways, hey, whatever, it's your thing. At least you're out there fighting the good fight, showing people what this breed is all about, and helping to save this breed simply by owing your dog responsibly. I'm a lot more worried about the people who are cruel to their pets, or are breeding or owning irresponsibly, fighting their dogs, etc., and just plain giving this breed a bad name.
In the big scheme of things, cropping is no biggie. Yeah, it sucks for the dog at the time, and it's unnecessary, but I'm pretty sure the dog will get over it. I don't think he's going to look in the mirror every day and wish for ears
, it's not like the other dogs are going to make fun of him hehe. I'm pretty sure all the cropped dogs here are much more concerned with continuing their pampered pitter existences with their families who love them than with seeking retribution for their ears being cropped
And as for dog's who don't fit the standard, my Gage fits the bill, and it doesn't bother me at all when people say he doesn't look like a pit bull. The idea of seeing the parents (his both looked like pure APBTs) meaning a dog is the breed they appear to be makes him laugh:
Gage is one dog who I think would look a bit more pittish (and very handsome) with cropped ears, although I'd never do it. I would LOVE though, for someone here (ahem...*cough*Michelle*cough*) to photoshop a crop onto him
*edited to add - geez my dog is handsome!!! He might not look like a pit, but he's a good looking pupper (of course, I'm a little biased). Seriously though, he is looking very nice, if original, these days, and I get so many comments on him. I should try and think up an original breed name
, as people are always asking what kind of dog he is