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Budweiser will stop docking Clydesdales’ tails

I saw this news today. Seems positive to me :slight_smile: They can braid them and do mud knots instead. And the horses can keep their tails for fly swishing when not in harness.




I’m very glad to see this. I drove for years with ponies who had long tails. I’m at a completely different (much lower) level than the folks who drive these horses, but still. Why mutilate your horses?



I know nothing about driving big horses particularly multi horse rigs. Will they mud tail the horses or just go natural


I assumed mud tail them, but that’s just an assumption by me. I haven’t seen any reports that clarify what they will do.

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I suspect mud tails.

When driving heavy horses in harness, the tail getting snagged around trace chains is a legitimate problem. It’s just that docking the horse’s tails was an extreme and unkind solution.


Now; if no one messed with altering any horse or pony tails at all.


At the 8H Hitch Classic at Indianapolis I’ve seen undocked tails being braided so they appeared docked.
I hope this trickles down from the Budweiser Clydes to the other Draft breeds :pray:

Next Target (for me):
The ridiculously-exaggerated Scotched shoes.
HATE seeing this bow to Fashion over function in the showering :confused:


I’ve often wondered why Budweiser keeps docking their horses’ tails, considering the examples of braiding/plaiting draft horses’ tails they’ve had for years, if they’d just emulated them. –


In England they’re called tail buns. Docking has been illegal there for more than 70 years.


Docking should be illegal everywhere, unless it’s being done for a valid medical reason. Horses, dogs, whatever, how about we don’t mess with nature by removing or trimming body parts. I see so many dogs with docked tails around here. I hate to see it.



Agree. I was slightly taken aback when I saw a “pit” type puppy with cropped ears last week. I willing to bet it was done by breeder and not a vet. They were pretty much taken off leaving two little peaks.

I always liked those leather and laced sleeves the SRS used for the Airs horses.

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Docking tails is similar to shaving the whiskers off. Whiskers are a sensory organ with a nerve that responds to touch. Shaving them was made illegal in Europe several years ago.

Doberman Pinchers ears used to be clipped and bandaged for a few weeks so they would stand up. That was banned quite a while ago. I had a friend who bred and showed Dobies, and whenever she did their ears I felt sorry for the dog.


@walktrot, is it really banned? I did not know that–good idea. Or perhaps, banned where you are? A friend got a Dobie about a year ago, and the ears were, as you say, clipped and bandaged by the breeder to stand up. I did not like it, but, not my decision/dog.

Shortly thereafter she got another, runt of the litter, more or less discarded, and the breeder did not bother.

I don’t see any advantage to the cropped ears. Friend said fewer ear infections, but surely those can be managed with ears down.


I remember visiting Sweden about 20 years ago; tail docking in dogs had been banned for years there already. It was visually startling to see Rotties and terriers with long tails (terriers are commonly docked very long so you don’t necessarily think of them as docked, but they are). Aussies as well. I’m sure they don’t dock horses either.

Although there were original reasons to dock tails and crop ears in animals, those reason either no longer exist or are easily worked around. The given reasons these days are always pathetic. They come down to “I like the way it looks” and “I can’t compete unless my animal is correctly mutilated”.

My dog breed for many years, Aussies, had a set of reasons for tail docking (it goes back to the marking of farm dogs in England for the purposes of taxation, or, tails can get injured working cattle) that were incredibly dismissable, but the real reason is that the variable gene for tail length, present in many herding dogs of British origin, cramped the style of the showdog Fancy because the aim of dog shows is uniformity to a standard (and if you select for no tails you’ll get spinal problems). That’s not a proud reason so nobody ever mentioned it.

If I were queen of the world, nobody would torment or mutilate animals to win prizes. But I ain’t.


It is not banned in the US. Many show dog breeds still have cropped ears.

I believe it has to be done by a licensed vet only, whereas I believe tail docking may still legally be done by a breeder (although I don’t know anyone who does.)

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Definitely not banned in the US. And nothing is stopping the breeder (or anyone) from cropping ears or docking tails or cutting off dew claws at home.

Unfortunately in the US the cropped/docked dogs will often win over similar quality “natural” dogs in the show ring, even when the breed standards allow for both. Idiots who think cropped ears look “tough” will do it to their dogs that never leave the owner’s home. (There seems to be a correlation between these people and ones who do dumb, shoddy stuff to their vehicles. :roll_eyes:). You can’t control stupid, but breed standards can be changed and judges should judge fairly.


It’s far more radical a procedure.
Whiskers grow back.
Docked tails do not.


There are several states that have some restrictions on tail docking and ear cropping in dogs, but they’re pretty weak.

Massachusetts has banned tail docking/tail setting of horses for many years.


Not even close. Docking tails is generally done with a bolt cutter type tool. It’s just nasty.




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