This is Amy. A miniature poodle I groom every three to four weeks. She is an amazing girl with a thin coat. She basically has NO hair in her ears. I trim it short, like I do on every dog in my care but I have NEVER, in 8 years, plucked her ears.
Fast forward to a week ago when she was at the vet clinic. NOT for ears, but for a simple weight check after she has been ill. Her weight is back up to normal levels but the vet took it upon himself to "Help the groomer" (in his own words) by plucking her ears.
I do not know who taught him to pluck ears, but I consider this type of injury abuse. Her ear looks worse than it does in the photo up close. There is actual bruising. Blood pooling. Infection setting in.
Please remember this was done last week! 8 days ago in fact.
There are spots outside the ear where she has been rubbing it on her mom's chair. I was really upset.
Amy, who is an amazing dog to groom, fought me tooth and nail for her face and head today. She HURTS. It took my son and I to get this photo she was so sore. After we were done I put a little soothing gel in it to make it feel better. Or at least make ME feel better!
Now, I realize that not all dogs who have ears plucked have this happen to them. I know it is an anomaly. However it is a reaction I am not willing to take a chance happening in my salon.
I realize that some dogs may need the hair plucked. I understand that not every plucked ear results in injury such as this. But had this happened after I plucked her ears I would be responsible for the vet bill. I am not willing to put myself into that position.
Many groomers in FaceBook groups have said they never saw any injury due to ear plucking, so when I got the chance to document it I did.
If you are going to pluck ears I suggest you go easy. Pluck small amounts of hair using fingers or small tweezers only. STOP if you see redness, the dog is VERY uncomfortable or any sign of infection is present.
In other words, use common sense.
Failure to use common sense results in injuries to the pet, upset owners and potentially vet bills and damage to your reputation.
I hope this never happens to you, but now at least you know the possibility is there and what to look for.