Tyler Shallue asked in PetsDogs · 1 month ago

Is it bad if my German Shepherd’s ears are floppy?

Hello everyone. So my mom and I own a 7 month old brown German Shepherd puppy. Occasionally, his ears will stand up, but not permanently. We Googled to see if that was normal and the results indicated that German Shepherds usually develop their erect ears after 20 weeks. However, he is 7 months old and his ears are still floppy much of the time. Should we feel concerned about this? Should we take him to a vet? Is this bad? Could someone please try to help us out? We would greatly appreciate it. Thank you.

9 Answers

  • 4 weeks ago
    Favourite answer

    Why do some German shepherds ears flop?

    A German Shepherd puppy's ear may go up then flop down again during the teething stage, then goes up permanently after that. The reason behind this is your German Shepherd puppy's body uses calcium when his teeth and bones are developing, so the formation of his ears' cartilage is being halted.German Shepherd Ears: Why Are My German Shepherd's Ears Not ...

    Large breed dogs grow up fast & need a bit more calcium to help build the bone & teeth & cartaledge.

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  • 4 weeks ago

    • "Is it bad if my German Shepherd’s ears are floppy?"

    The answer depends on (1) Pup's age, and (2) what functions Pup is meant to perform when he is an adult.


    💥1: What functions is he to perform for you once he's been trained?

    Please learn that "my" breed's real name (Deutscher Schäferhund) translates into English as German Shepherd Dog - 3 words, with GSD as the abbreviation.

    • "So my mom and I own a 7 month old brown German Shepherd puppy."

    Read the "Colours" part of the International Standard of the GSD:


    [ ? ] needs to read the REAL Standard of the GSD.

    [Jojo] got it right.

    I'm concerned that you don't mention ❗️BLACK❗️.

    Adult GSDs are allowed to be either (1) black all over, or (2) black on top with various tones of brown lower down. The first is called SELF-BLACK.The black-with brown is mostly called BLACK-&-TAN, but there is a huge range of shades of tan that over-fussy people use. https://www.google.com/search?as_st=y&tbm=isch&hl=... SHOULD all be "black & tan"aka "saddle-backed", but Google's Search is far from 100% accurate.

    An apparent exception to the "black" element is the pattern known as SABLE, where the whelps are almost totally yellowish once their coat dries out. But as Pup grows, hairs emerge on at least the top half of the body that have dark tips. Sometimes enough of each tip is dark enough to be called black, sometimes they are paler and look grey. See: https://www.google.com/search?q=sable+german+sheph...

    And at 7 months old a GSD should have developed all those guard hairs.


    💥2: Is your pet

    .._2a: sable

    .._2b: black-&-tan

    .._2c: self-black

    .._2d: has dark hairs that are blue-grey (referred to as "blue")

    .._2e: yellowish all over (no grey or black or "blue")

    a, b and c are fine.

    d and e are banned from GSD show rings, but can compete in training rings such as: Agility, Dancing with Dogs, Flyball, HGH (= herding sheep), Protection (DogSport, IPO, SchH), Rally-O, Tracking,and a few other training competitions. They should NOT be used for breeding.

    • "Occasionally, his ears will stand up, but not permanently."

    Ears that go up & down are common during the period from 4 through 7 months old, while the permanent teeth emerge and gradually push the deciduous (aka "baby") teeth out of the gums. One of my GSD bìtches took 9 months to firm up her ears - but I did nothing to try to hurry them up. I can't quickly find a pic of her, but below shows her son who was very typical of her.

    Except for primitive places such as the USA, using surgery to alter the ears or tail or toes produced by the genes inherited is banned.

    A BREEDER's task is to find & USE the genes that produce what is needed - NOT to cut bits off that are not "pretty enough".

    • "We Googled to see if that was normal and the results indicated that German Shepherds usually develop their erect ears after 20 weeks. However, he is 7 months old and his ears are still floppy much of the time."

    Ever heard of being PATIENT, kid?

    • "Should we feel concerned about this?"

    Until we get your answers to my question 💥1 I don't know.

    If you bought this pup for winning shows or for breeding from, DEFINITELY be concerned. But apart from normal feeding, playing, training, exercising you should NOT attempt to DO anything about the ears UNLESS you smell then SEE an infection inside his ear canal - in which it is time for a visit to the vet.

    • "Should we take him to a vet?"

    He should have been checked by a vet at 8, 12, and 16 weeks old, then - if his health was fine - injected with a dose of the CORE vaccines. In my country, that's the end of vaccinations, unless one is being flown to a nation with rabies and/or heartworm.

    If you live in a country where rabies is a problem, he should injected against that at 18-19 weeks old, and then again (depending on what your government's Laws require) 12 months later, and 3, 6, 9, 12,15 YEARS after that second rabies vaccine, until such time as the law in your nation is changed.

    If you live where heartworm is a problem,you should ask the vet about that before Pup is a year old.

    I live next to Paradise (maybe even ON Paradise!), so the only vaccinations my dogs need are the 3 CORE "shots".

    • "Is this bad?"

    Droop ears as a pet or an obediencedog is not a problem.

    But it IS against the Standard of the GSD, so such GSDs are NOT to be bred from, NOT to be shown.

    In which case, don't neuter him until after he passes 18 months old.

    • "Could someone please try to help us out?"

    That question is redundant.

    Now YOUR Home Page:

    Instead of

    "I am 11 years of age" on your Home Page, change it to

    "I was born in 2009" - IF you are still 11 ( suspect that you are now 20±1).

    But change it to show the year you WERE born.

    If you're already 12 - or older still! - you should now realise that, the way you've writtren it, you'll have to change that part EVERY year! Far better to supply a birth year so that people who bother to look at Home Pages can work it out "near enough" for themselves. You could include your birth month, but I don't think it's that important. You SHOULD include the name of the part of the world you live in, so we can tell which laws apply to you & your pet. It can also be helpful to tell us the main things that interest you.

    Kreaky Kiwi - first pup in 1950, GSD trainer & breeder as of Easter 1968

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  • 4 weeks ago

    Not at all! Every dog is unique in its own way. You can always bring the pup to the vet but it isn't a life-threatening development or anything. Just purely aesthetic. Hope this helps! 

    Note: My aunt had a shepherd and its ears raised at one year so get a vets opinion. While there are general guidelines, not all dogs are the same. 

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  • Jojo
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    By `Brown` do you mean `Liver` coloured? What colour does it state on the dogs pedigree certificate?

    If you have no pedigree papers, then the chances are the dog is not pure bred and that is why it has floppy ears.

    However , occasionally a pure bred GSD can suffer from over large or extra heavy or weak cartilage ears which never become erect, or sometimes just one ear does.

    Most well bred GSD pups have erect ears by 4-5 months at the latest.

    Blue, white, red and Liver coloured GSD`s ( and in some countries a long coat) are not considered to be correct in many countries. 

    The colour of the dog is not a big issue if its not going to be bred from or shown. Many odd coloured GSD`s have made good working dogs.

    Source(s): GSD owner for 57 years.UK.
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  • Maxi
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    'Ususally' means the average time.... it doesn't mean by 20 week ALL dog are like that............ some dogs it will take longer as well as dogs ears are affected by teething and this can particularly be noticable in GSDs who eventually have large/picked up ears, they will flop, one up one day the other up the next

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  • 4 weeks ago

    Are you sure the dog is pure-bred & not a mix?  GSD are not supposed to come in brown or liver.  It is an unacceptable & disqualifing color.  You will not be able to show it and should NOT breed it, so no need to "fix" the ears.

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  • 4 weeks ago

    Well unless they stand, it doesn't conform to the Breed Standard, but many GSDs have their owners concerned if, during teething, they flop.   More often than not they do eventually stand provided their parents don't have weak ears.   There's no need for a vet - but you might talk to his breeder, for reassurance if nothing else.

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  • keerok
    Lv 7
    1 month ago
    • Verulam 1
      Lv 7
      4 weeks agoReport

      I'd suggest this article is helpful BUT there's no way I'd tape those ears.  Unless you want to show, so he has one, or both, ears that flop - it gives him CHARACTER!!

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    A dog that age has probably seen the dog once a month for 3 months, maybe once after that.  What did the Vet say?

    I had a purebred (AKC) GSD, great papers, bloodline checked by my Vet.  Her ears NEVER stood up.  My Vet thought that she had been kenneled or crated for a lengthy period of time, kept hitting her ears, the cartilage was damaged.  I have never crated or kenneled, so that was the breeder.

    There is surgery available if this is important to you.

    • FORGET ear surgery! Yiou must be in one of the more barbaric nations.
      Your vet seems to have more imaginationthan sense.

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