What’s the Deal with Ear Implants for Dogs?

What’s the Deal with Ear Implants for Dogs?
June 12, 2019

What’s the Deal with Ear Implants for Dogs?

 Medical technologies have come a long way in recent years when it comes to canine health and aesthetic treatments. We are now at the stage that if your dog has less than perfect ears, there is a solution for this. Whether that solution, is practical or ethical is another thing entirely.

We’ll let you know all of the facts on ear implants for dogs, and let you know everything that you will need to consider before you put your dog forward for this treatment.

When it comes to cosmetic surgery, people are able to give consent for their bodies to be invaded and manipulated. However, a dog will never be able to give its consent for a non-essential surgical treatment.

Surgery can put your dogs under an incredible amount of stress – not just physically, but emotionally too. Everyone knows that dogs hate going to the vets, and if they have unnecessary surgery, they may end up hating their trips to the vets even more!

How do Dog Ear Implants Work?

Ear implants for dogs have been around for a fair few years, meaning that any dog owners who wish their dog’s ears were a little perkier had a solution to their problem. Some dog breeds such as Beagles come with naturally droopy ears, this can make the breeds look slightly sad, as opposed to their perkier eared cousins. Yet, the solution to this problem has always been there – don’t buy a dog breed if you don’t like the way it looks. However, some dog breeds which are supposed to have perky ears may end up with bent or broken ears. If this causes a dog discomfort, then this would probably be the only reason to allow your dog to undergo the surgery.

The surgery may only take 20 minutes to complete, but there is still a recovery period of 30 days  - that’s not to mention the fact that your dog may seriously fall out with you!

For every owner unappreciative of a dog’s ear’s there will be an owner that loves their droopy aesthetic even more! Sadly, there is now an incredibly high demand for dog ear implants from owners wishing their dogs looked a little happier.

The main innovator behind dog ear plants is Gregg Miller who created the company PermaStay Ear Plants which give your dog a permeant prosthetic enhancement. You can’t really blame him in a world of supply and demand, however, the profit made from pet owner’s dog vanity is slightly concerning.

Before Gregg Miller turned his attention to prosthetic ears, he was the mind responsible for plastic testicles which would be implanted in dogs after they had been neutered. These implants were placed into over 250,000 male dogs. However, the owners of the dog’s he treated soon started wondering how he would be able to enhance a dog’s look even further with his ability to create aesthetically pleasing prosthetics.

Miller insists that the ear transplants have no adverse effects on dogs once they have been fitted and the ears have healed following on from the surgery. The prosthetics may only be around three inches in size and paper thin. But that’s not to say that every time your dog is under anaesthetic there is always the chance of an adverse reaction. Then, there is the task of keeping the dog’s ears clean and preventing the risk of post-operative infection.

However, Miller sees himself as the plastic surgeon of pets, when he was asked about the future of his business, here’s what he had to say;

"The direction I’m taking now is that I want to create whatever implantable device there is for pets," he told the news source. "Then everybody will know my company is the implant company, the eyes, the ears, the testicles and God knows whatever else."

Once the ear prosthetic has been installed, the tissue will grow around the ear with the prosthetic acting as a wall of support to permanently restore the perkiness in an ear.

While some sources online imply that ear implants for dogs are only for dogs whose ears are sticking up,

Popularity & Cost of Ear Implants in Dogs

 Since the ear implants were approved in 2011, Miller’s company alone have fitted in excess of over 1000 ear implants. The breeds which have had cosmetic treatment include Boxers, Chihuahuas, German Shepherds, and Dobermans. Miller only had to create three different sizes of ear prosthetics which will fit any size of dog’s ears.

Shortly after the ear prosthetics were introduced their value was around $300 each, then your vet would charge anywhere between $300 and $800 for the installation of them. The price differs on the vet and their location in the country.  

While there are some good reasons why people may want to have their dog’s external ears altered, it is worth remembering the pain and suffering which dogs have gone through when cropping ears was all the rage. How our dog’s ears look is a very minor issue to ourselves. However, for a dog to deal with that level of trauma, that can easily stay with them for life.

So, this means that in these cases, it’s always best to put your dog’s needs first. If you need any help in making a decision when it comes to this, just imagine being forced against your will to have a surgery which you have absolutely no choice of opting in or out of. It’s a totally different story if your dog requires the surgery for health reasons as we all have a duty of care to make sure that our dogs are healthy and happy!