Ned & Pearl
When asked to write something about my experiences with my two deaf Aussies, I thought about explaining why homozygous merles are deaf and/or blind. Or tugging at your heart strings by describing how Ned’s first owners abandoned him when they learned he was deaf. And then warming your heart by telling you how Pearl is the most confident, athletic and jolly dog around. I could tell you about training them with hand signals and how I came to trust them to be off-leash when hiking—and I can, if knowing about those things would encourage people to give disabled dogs a chance at adoption.
But the first thing I’d like you to know about having deaf dogs is that their deafness is irrelevant. Mine were no harder to train—to housebreak, to use a dog door, to come when “called”—than my hearing dogs. In fact, their breed and a little training have made them some of the most focused and cooperative dogs I’ve ever met.
What I most want you to know is that as family members, their deafness is of absolutely zero consequence. They have the same needs and concerns as any dogs, such as where are you going and can I go with you? If I back my booty up will you do that scritchy thing that I like so much I do a little dance? Are you going to eat that?
They are, like most dogs, charming comedians who would like to take you out for a romp and then settle in for a snuggle on the couch.
Also, the offer of a biscuit would not go awry.
- Living happily in NM