• A humane alternative to ear cropping

  • Duration, 2-4 weeks (best success if applied during teething period)

Supplies you will need: 

Other references:

Notes: Val-A dries very quickly and is also runny.  So work fast.  Also, not every fabric tear mender glue is good to use on flesh--some of the glues are very irritating to the skin so it is imperative to find one that wont irritate. Please use the above reference websites to see what other terrier people have used with success. The VAL-A glue was suggested to me by several longtime terrier breeders who have set ears.  Ashley's ears were set with this method.


"Break" refers to where you wish the fold to be on the ear.  It is in no way "breaking" the ear.  It is also known as where the cartilage folds.

"Rose" or "half-prick" are allowable ear sets by the AKC standard.

"Cotton" is like the fabric that holds the two parts of the ear together.  If you do not use cotton, trust me, you will be going to buy some very quickly while slapping yourself on the head (been there done that).

PS the puppy was in no way harmed while being a model, her intent was to get to the cookies the photographer kept feeding her!

In this picture, you see both ears are not uniform and are not rose, although one wants to be.  Whenever you glue ears, both must be done to ensure uniformity.  Total gluing time is approximately 15 minutes (including pictures).  The glue comes off of your fingers (once dried) like a mask.

Here I am pre-measuring where I want the break to be.  Where my finger is is where I wish to put the glue down, and then I will add the cotton filaments to set the glue in place.

I apply a small amount of glue (actually way too small I had to add more).

Even though this is her other ear, this is a better amount of glue, and once I add the cotton to it, I will fold it back onto itself and hold it there momentarily to set the glue.  I also will add more glue on the back of it once all is said and done, but right now I only wish to get a close approximation of where the ear ought to be set.

OK, here I've added the glue and the cotton and am in the process of folding it back, using my finger pressure to indent the ear.

Here I am holding the ear together for a few seconds to set the break.


The ear is glued and cottoned, but not finished, since the inner part of the break must also be glued.

Glue has been applied to the inner part of the ear....

Cotton is now applied....

And voila!  The ear is glued into a perfect rose.  Both sides must be done.

  • The ears must not get wet.  If they do, remove the whole apparatus with the baby oil, clean with a mild soap and dry carefully, and re-apply.
  • The eargluing must be done before teething and kept on during the teething.  It may be kept on long after teething to ensure the proper set.
  • The eargluing must be changed every one to two weeks
  • There will be some hair loss due to pulling on the glue because of growth, but by the time the dog is 6 months of age, all hair loss will be regrown.
  • Both ears must be done to ensure uniformity.
  • Note the dog's reaction to the ears and smell them often to make sure there is not any problems/reactions to the gluing.
  • I've not noticed dogs to care about this being done to them, so no extra special measures need to be taken.
  • Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have (email below).



Updated 9/02/08

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