Do you have a deaf dog and wish you knew the key points to training a deaf dog? When working with a hearing impaired canine it is important to follow certain steps in order to have success: Be patient! Granted, this may sound like a no-brainer but the truth is that training a deaf dog can sometimes be frustrating and difficult. The natural tendency of even good dog owners is to sometimes get impatient and angry. Make sure to start and end every training session positively and actively make sure that your mindset is one of patience and understanding.
Use lots of physical ‘helps’. The great thing about training a deaf dog is that dogs are not verbal learners. As humans we can sit in a classroom and ‘soak up’ information. Dogs can’t do that. The fact that a dog is deaf only slightly hinders the learning process because dogs learn much more through touch and posture.
Make sure to physically help your dog understand the commands you wish to teach him. With deaf dogs it is a great idea to do extensive leash training even around the house in order to be able to communicate any idea you wish.
Get comfortable with hand signals. Training a deaf dog means that you obviously won’t be able to give any verbal commands, hand signals are the way to go. Practice your hand signals and make sure you stick to one hand signal per dog training command. Typical dog training hand signals are a closed fist for the sit command, a sweeping downwards hand motion for the lay down command, and a hand sweeping towards your chest for a come here command.
While very challenging, training a deaf dog can be very rewarding as it will help you bond very closely with each other.