Did you know that there are several breeds of dogs with a deafness rate of 40% or more?
Typical breeds genetically susceptible to deafness include Dalmatians, Cocker Spaniels, Australian Cattle Dogs, English Setters, and Boston Terriers.
Like people, dogs can be born deaf or experience variations of deafness or hearing loss in their lifetimes.
The last week of September is Deaf Dog Awareness week. We want to share with you a few facts and misconceptions about deaf dogs.
If you’ve ever had a deaf dog or a dog with hearing loss, you know that it takes a little extra care to communicate with these special dogs, but once you do, you’ll have a faithful fur-friend for life.
Top Facts 4 About Deaf Dogs
- Dogs can be born deaf in one or both ears. Pigmentation can also play a role in congenital deafness. White-coated dogs and those with two different colored eyes are more prone to loss of hearing or deafness.
- Deaf dogs are just as capable and intelligent as dogs that can hear. They just need a little extra time and patience. You will have to learn and teach your fur-baby the different hand signals. And just like humans that are deaf, their other senses are more sensitive. Deaf dogs are just as smart, funny, and charming!
- A deaf dog may indeed startle a bit easier than a hearing dog, so it is essential that anyone that approaches the dog be aware that they will scare a bit, so they need to go slow, stay calm, and touch gently.
- Deaf dogs still bark, acting through natural instincts. If they want to bark, they are going to bark!
Keep them safe
- Train them with positive reinforcement and ensure they are properly socialized around other animals and people.
- Keep the ID game healthy not only with a collar and tags but with a vest or jacket that reads “I’m Deaf.” That way, people are better equipped to handle their needs in the case of separation.
- Be sure to get them microchipped and make sure your information stays updated if they wander outside your presence.
- Always be there at the ready for your pet with the correct hand signals for them to rely on. If they cannot see what’s happening, they won’t know what you need or want from them. Be sure to guide them every step of the way.