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There is much controversy over the issue of whether or not to dock a dog's tail. Both sides offer many valid points. Some breeders feel it is normal and helpful for the dog; opponents say it is inhumane and benefits the dog in no way. Evaluate both sides and decide if tail docking is right for your pet. Tail docking first originated in Europe's aristocratic families who often had hunting dogs. At first, hunters decided a shortened tail would help the dog with its quickness and agility. This trend became so popular that noble landlords began taxing the owners of long-tailed dogs. Though there is no proof this actually helped the dog hunt, owners have continued the practice long after the tax disappeared. The pros of tail docking are basically beauty and tradition. Show dogs almost always have their tails docked and this makes the practice seem elitist. The problem is that the process is painful and can lead to infection if not preformed correctly. Some animal rights advocates have even gone so fact as to call it inhumane and cruel. Since there is no medical need to dock a dog's tail, the practice is considered an unnecessary surgery. So before you dock your dog's tail, consider all elements of both sides carefully.