4 Tips How To Train A Deaf Dog
Dogs rely on their senses to communicate with their environment. If your dog loses one of its senses, that doesn't mean that it will be disoriented and unable to do anything. If you own a deaf dog, there are ways you can communicate with him and teach him all the stuff all canines can learn. Since your dog lost his hearing ability, he will rely more on his other senses – smell and vision.
If you are interested in how to train a deaf dog, you have come to the right place. We will explain how you can ensure that your deaf dog will be safe during this process and how to make it easier for him. There are a few tricks you can try. Let's start.
1. Get your dog's attention
To get started with a deaf dog, you must get their attention. Obviously, you cannot call your dog by his name. Instead, you must find a good place in your house or apartment where there will not be any distractions for your dog. That way, your dog can focus on you.
WORLD DOG FINDER TIP: Getting a lot of treats and showing them to the dog can also help get his attention.
When the dog starts paying attention to you, reward him with a treat. You can repeat this step a few times, so your dog can begin to understand that watching you will bring him treats. That way, you can ensure that you will have your dog's full attention.
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2. Hand signals
When training deaf dogs, you can try hand signals. There are a few universal hand signals you can pick up, or if you are creative, you can make your own. Either way, the process is pretty simple. Instead of using a command, you train your deaf dog to connect hand signals with the required movement.
For starters, you can create hand signals to teach your dog to focus on you. For example, when you use a specific hand signal, your dog should learn that this is when he will need to look at you and stay still.
After he picks this up, you can try and start using other different hand signals and teach your deaf dog other things.
3. Sign languages
Some owners use different things rather than just words to communicate with their dogs, even if they are not deaf. Learning some sign language can also be an excellent trick to communicate with your deaf dog. If you are creative, you can also create your own sign language and teach your dog.
After you teach your dog first thing, you will see how easy it is, and your dog will pick up new things even faster. Ensure you always use treats to reward your dog for completing the assignment.
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Rewards are the main thing you should use to get your dog’s attention when you start training your deaf dog. Many dogs will want to hear verbal praise, but that obviously will not work in this case.
At the beginning of the training, prepare many healthy and tasty dog treats. Ensure you always reward your dog after completing the required assignment.
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You can also pet your dog to make him know he's done something correctly, but treats will be more effective, especially if your dog is food driven.
IMPORTANT: If you use a lot of treats during training sessions, ensure that you regulate your dog's regular food to prevent your dog from becoming obese.
How will I tell my dog that he's done something right?
As we said earlier, rewards are your best friend when training a deaf dog. With a reward, your dog will quickly understand what you are asking him to do, and he will gladly do it because he knows that he will be rewarded with a tasty treat.
This works for most dogs, especially if they are food driven. If you notice that your dog isn't a big fan of treats for motivation, either you will have to try different and tastier treats, or you will have to find some other item that will force your dog to become interested, something like a favorite toy.
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Can I teach my dog new commands if he becomes deaf at an adult age?
In the dog community, there are saying that you cannot teach senior dogs new tricks. That is entirely wrong. No matter how old, every dog can learn new tricks, of course, if you have the right approach and patience. Not all dogs will work at the same pace, some will require more repetitions, and some will pick up commands quickly.
The best thing you can do is be patient and provide a lot of treats for your dog. So yes, your senior dog can learn new tricks even if he becomes deaf. How awesome is that?
What not to do when you train a deaf dog?
If you own a deaf dog, you should remember to be patient and never punish your dog, no matter what. If your dog is deaf, he will need to learn to rely on his other senses. When training your dog, use a lot of treats and always pet your dog.
No matter how hard it can seem, results will follow if you put in the work, and your dog will learn new things. Never use any sort of punishment if you are frustrated or have had enough training. If you do, this will only take you back, and you can create more problems.
If it seems that you cannot train your deaf dog by yourself, we advise you to contact a professional that can show you how to approach training.
World Dog Finder team