Owning a deaf dog can be stressful, but support groups and books are available for resourceful owners.
Owning a deaf dog can be challenging, but several support groups are available to assist owners. Handicapped Pets is an organization that sells products for special needs animals, and offers stories, testimonials, and discussion areas for owners of disabled pets. Deaf Dog Connections is an advocacy and resource center for those with deaf dogs, and has an entire community based around supporting and educating deaf dog owners. Pets With Disabilities is an organization dedicated exclusively to disabled pets and has numerous listings for deaf dogs. Call your local shelter and ask if they have any special needs pets, and look for rescue organizations in your region that adopt out deaf dogs.
Deaf dogs are a challenge to own, but with a little education and a lot of support, fewer deaf dogs will be put to sleep and will get to enjoy long, full, healthy lives Here are some books to help.
by Susan Cope-Becker
The first of its kind, based on the author’s firsthand experience living with a deaf dog, her own Boston Terrier. Includes research on the topic of canine deafness, how-to’s for training and communicating, plus collected personal experiences of deaf dog owners from all over the world. Contents: getting and keeping the deaf dog’s attention, over 25 hand signs (some illustrated), training and safety tips, testing a dog for deafness at home, BAER testing/what, where, and why, genetics of canine deafness, deaf dog myths (aggression and brain damage), stories about deaf dogs from their owners, resources for products, books, organizations, and an opportunity to assist in deaf dog research.
by Barry Eaton
Ideas for getting attention, teaching basic commands, help, and encouragement you’ll appreciate if you have taken on a deaf puppy! (This book is geared more toward training a puppy but still has good information if your dog is older.)
by Dan Dye & Mark Beckloff
This is the story of Gracie, a deaf and partially blind mostly white Great Dane with a delicate constitution and penchant for small miracles. In the middle of a bitter Kansas City winter, Dan would save the loneliest pup in the litter, Gracie. And over the next ten years, Gracie would save Dan – helping him learn the meaning of happiness. Dan teaches himself how to cook (since Gracie has an anorexia-producing dislike for commercial dog food), and within three days is baking her the cookies that will transform their lives. If you like dogs, this is a good book. If you are privileged enough to live with a deaf dog, you will love it.
by Rod R. Butterworth, Mickey Flodin
This book is the most complete pocket guide to basic American Sign Language. It’s small enough to carry with you.
by Elaine, Ph.D. Costello et al
This is a more extensive ASL dictionary, with more than 5,600 words (it would come in handy for learning ASL). This book contains a lot of cross-references, and related words, which makes it easier to find just the sign you are looking for. There are both a drawing and written instructions for each entry.