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Caring for a Deaf Dog

Did you know that the last week of September is Deaf Dog Awareness Week? Just like people, dogs can lose part or all of their hearing. Fido will still make a loving and adorable pet if he can’t hear very well, but he may need a bit of extra TLC. Read on as a local Carmel, IN vet discusses caring for a deaf (or partially deaf) dog.

Training

Though it may take some time, you can teach your canine companion to respond to hand signals, just as he would vocal commands. You may also want to teach Fido to come to you when you wave a flashlight. This can be very helpful for calling your dog at night.

Guests

If you have company coming over, let them know in advance that your four-legged buddy can’t hear. Ask your guests not to approach Fido from behind or try to give him any vocal commands. You may even want to put a sign on your dog’s collar.

Walking

Whenever you walk your furry friend, keep him on a short leash. If you are walking along the side of a road, be sure to keep Fido to the outside. He has a shorter profile than you do, and won’t be able to hear cars approaching.

Fencing

Good fencing is important for any dog, but it’s particularly crucial with specially-abled pets, as they are at increased risk of getting lost or hurt if they get out. Make sure your fencing is secure, and use self-latching gates.

Collar

Since your furry pal won’t hear you calling him, put a bell on his collar. That way, you’ll be able to tell where your canine companion is, instead of having to constantly go looking for him.

Petiquette

Hearing-impaired pets are often startled when people walk up quietly behind them, even unintentionally. Try not to accidentally scare your pup this way. Before you approach Fido, stamp your feet so he hears you coming. Also, don’t touch or pet your dog while he’s snoozing: he may not like being woken up unexpectedly. Consider doing a bit of desensitization training: wake your canine pal up, and then immediately give him a treat and an ear scritch.

Do you have questions about your pet’s health or care? Do you know or suspect that your dog has hearing problems? Call us, your Carmel, IN animal clinic, today!

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