If you think that plastic surgery is only for movie stars and models, then think again. This type of surgery is becoming more and more popular for dogs, particularly in Brazil, Europe and the United States. While there are some cosmetic operations that improve a dog’s health and well being, some procedures are purely for appearances.
Let’s look at some of the more common cosmetic surgeries that are performed on our canine companions.
Walk Like a Man
Many men won’t have their dog neutered because they don’t like the way they look without testicles. This is the reason Neuticles were invented. These silicon testicle implants allow a dog to keep his masculine profile, while still being unable to breed. They are available in a range of sizes and consistencies, so you’ll be able to find a set to suit your dog.
From Front to Back
Ear cropping and tail docking have been performed on certain breeds of dog for many years. These are controversial procedures, with some people believing they are essential to prevent tail damage or ear infections. Others feel they are totally unnecessary, and are in fact cruel. Current veterinary opinion is that there is no medical reason to perform these procedures, and may actually affect a dog’s ability to communicate with others of the same species by using their tail and ear position.
Some people are now choosing to pierce their dog’s ears. This is purely for appearance’s sake, and is of absolutely no benefit to the dog. In fact, the presence of the earring may be annoying, and lead to excessive scratching. This is one of the worst examples of changing a dog’s appearance purely to satisfy their human owner, and really shouldn’t be allowed.
Face Lifts and Eyelid Tucks
There are some breeds of dogs that are very wrinkly. The Shar Pei is the perfect example: when these dogs are young, they need their eyelids sutured open to prevent them developing an inward rolling eyelid later in life, which can cause chronic inflammation and infection. Cocker Spaniels often have very saggy lower lids, which also predisposes to infection. A little eyelid tuck in this breed can also help to prevent conjunctivitis and excessively watery eyes.
Other less wrinkly breeds still benefit from a little facial nip and tuck at times. The Pug typically has a large fold of skin between its nose and its eyes, and these skin folds can trap moisture and become infected. One of the most reliable ways of reducing infection is to remove the skin fold.
Do Dogs Need a Boob Job?
After having several litters of puppies, dogs can have very loose saggy mammary glands. These can really get in the way, and in some shorter breeds they can almost touch the ground. Loose breasts also have skin folds that trap moisture and can become chronically smelly and infected. If the excess skin causes a problem for the dog, then it’s a fair option to remove that skin and restore their pre-pregnancy tummy.
It’s All in the Smile
Orthodontics is a rapidly growing area of veterinary medicine, and it serves a very good purpose. It’s not necessarily to give a dog a brilliant smile, but to replace and restore fractured and damaged teeth. Veterinarians can now give a dog a new crown, and apply braces to better align a bad bite.
While some plastic surgery procedures are important for a dog’s health and well-being, it’s important to be realistic. Any surgery has risks, and it is often painful. Think about it – is it worth putting your dog through this, just to make him look better?