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Thread: White dogs and deafness

  1. #1

    Default White dogs and deafness

    I have just been browsing the forum and noticed a post from someone about how white dogs can sometimes show signs of deafness especially if they have blue eyes...we have suspected possibly that our dog is a bit deaf, he is not all deaf because he seems to come when called most of the time.... can anyone tell me the prevalence of this at all. He is blue and white with blue eyes..... and an amstaff. Sometimes we think hes just disobedient lol... other times we really wonder if hes deaf but its so hit and miss with his listening skills we are never sure, can we test him??
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  2. #2
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    You could probably take him to the vet and get him tested! He is a really beautiful boy though. Bella has selective hearing, she may as well be deaf sometimes! Lol

    There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.

  3. #3

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    One of mine has very selective hearing, you would think she is as deaf as a post until she hears a tiny squeek from a mouse or a flutter of birds in the roof then she's straight into action.
    Squeeky toys are a good way to test from home or any other item that will make a noise to get the dog interested.

    ETA - I just tested my "deaf" dog, I made a squeeky noise at her (she is next to me on the couch) and there was the slightest movement of an eyebrow so I know she heard me, she just couldn't be bothered lifting her head.

  4. #4

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    HA i swear we think all of the above with Alvin...lol....im sure hes just naughty....but on occasions I wonder...and I have had people (read 'experts ahem!!') put it in my head that he has some kind of genetic defect being blue and white with blue eyes.....!!!! Ill ask the vet next time im there what he thinks....thanks all for replies so far.
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  5. #5

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    I have a friend with a deaf ACD. They just thought he was a great dog as he never chased possums??? He is a backyard dog, mainly, or on lead so it doesn't matter to them if he is deaf. They never had him tested but a quick test with a squeeky toy made it very obvious.

  6. #6

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    thanks pepe, im just not sure...he reacts very well to visual cues so Im also wondering if he has honed his eyes to make up for his ears...or again we go back to the "select deafness" it makes no difference to me if he is, it just means i can use different training methods with him to try and get him a bit better behaved!!!! :-)
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  7. #7

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    Hand signals along with verbal commands are a good idea anyway. All mine respond to both verbal commands and hand signs. For example sit is a single finger held in the air, while drop is a finger pointing downwards. For roll over I twirl my finger around in a circle... They catch on surprisingly quick.

  8. #8

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    Deafness in white dogs is linked to a lack of pigment inside the ear which causes it. This is why in particular dogs with blue eyes can be prone to it, as that can be also linked to lack of pigment.

    Your dog has blue patches around the ears which is a good sign. But the ear wth less pigment could have hearing affected. Or it could be simple selective hearing...

    You can try making small noises when your dog seems distracted from you, from behind or out of sight on either side is helpful.

  9. #9

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    What Nattylou said about the pigment

    You can get your dog BAER tested, it is relatively common for dogs to be unilaterally deaf (only in one ear).

    I have a dog with white ears. As a pup the breeder assured us that she would wake from sleep if they made a noise (voice, not stomping or vibration based) and didn't show any signs of being deaf, but we had some stuff written into our purchase contract about BAER testing if we suspected something was wrong. It turns out there's nothing wrong with her hearing though.

  10. #10

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    thanks again all, he responds when you make funny noises at him to get his attention, clicking with your tongue, that kind of kissy noise we all probably do, but then sometimes wont respond to finger clicks, im wondering if they are not the right pitch, we will keep him under close observation.. i do use hand signals with my dogs and my mastiff is very responsiv to them but we have only had alvin a few months so we are still trying with him... :-)
    Help Alvin and Barkly Save dogs from death row :-) Please take a moment to go and vote for them here http://www.pawclub.com.au/Promotions...ote.aspx?id=14 So they can win and donate some much needed funds to Big Dog Rescue. THANKS AND WOOF!!

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