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hard of hearing

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 2:31 pm
by tomweber
I have a rescue Britt who is almost deaf. He is 6yrs. old & I got him 4wks. ago. How do I go about training this dog. It is very frustrating having to yell all the time! Thanks for any help. Tom Weber

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 6:06 pm
by Barb Wright
Hi Tom....thanks for joining us, and I think you will get a few replies because some of us have deaf Britts as well. But first, here are a couple internet sites to visit that have all kinds of suggestions on working with a deaf dog. There are lots of sites with information on deaf dogs, these were just a couple selected randomly.

http://www.myaussies.com/clicker.html
http://www.deafdogs.org/training/

My Cassie is deaf, her hearing slowly diminishing in the last couple years to very little noise perception. Fortunately I have always used hand signals with her, as well as voice commands, and so we easily drifted into the hand signals. Of course, like you, the problem is getting their attention. The above sites will give you some ideas to try for getting their attention, and you should begin now while he still has some hearing to incorporate hand signals with your voice commands.

Dealing with a dog with this kind of handicap takes patience, more patience, and then some more patience. Once you have studied up on living with a deaf dog you will find yourself proud of what you can achieve with your companion.

P.S. There is also a Yahoo group for meeting up with other folks who have deaf dogs. I am sure if you join (free) and join in their discussions you will learn a lot about living with a deaf dog. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/deafdogs/

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 6:41 pm
by Cindy
At one point, not too many years ago, we had 3 old dogs who were all deaf or nearly deaf. We did a lot of stamping on the ground to get their attention and then used hand signals. When we lost our older dogs and brought on young ones, the hand signals continued out of habit. I'll be interested to see how well the dogs learned them. :roll: You might want to see if a whistle works or rattling a can with something in it like rocks. I guess it depends on how deaf your dog is. And then there's always the "Brittany deafness" which is even more frustrating because they really can hear and are just ignoring you!!! Good luck and please let us know what works. If our dogs aren't there now, they probably will be at some point.

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 7:16 pm
by Lisa
I have a deaf dog that I got as a rescue at 10 years of age. She's always been hard of hearing, but is now totally deaf. One of the first things I did with her was to simply stop yelling at her to get her attention or ask for certain behaviors. I taught her hand signals for the common things I'd need - sit, lie down, come, kennel up, stay. I use a flashlight at night to get her attention when she's out in the yard. I flash it at her, then, once she looks at me, I signal for her to come inside. During the day time, or inside, I either toss a stuffed toy at her, roll a ball in front of her, or squirt her with a squirt bottle to get her attention, then give her whatever signal I need to. There are times when all my attention getting techniques don't work...in those cases, I just go over and tap her. It just takes a bit of patience and ingenuity to work with deaf dogs. They are just as smart as hearing dogs, you just have to find out how to communicate with them.

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 8:40 pm
by Sooz
Also you can try a vibrating collar to get their attention...

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Sun Sep 18, 2011 9:58 pm
by rtropeano
I've heard of using a vibrating collar as well. Check out this website http://www.thelittlewhitedog.com/Little/Training.html. I have met the owners and they have an awesome little deaf aussie that is fantastic. You'll want to look at the link that talks about deaf dogs.

Good luck!
Rose

Re: hard of hearing

Posted: Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:13 pm
by tomweber
Thanks to all who have replyed to my post on hard of hearing dogs. I have sent away for some books on hearing loss in dogs. I will keep every one posted on my dogs progess. Thanks again to every one. Tom Weber