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Discussion Starter #1
Got our baby girl, Storm, last night. She is 8.5 or 9.5 weeks old. I *think* she is deaf. Started "realizing" it today.

1. Huge crack of thunder while we were outside, SIL's lhasa nearly ran through the glass door to get inside. Storm didn't so much as twitch. We went inside, the lhasa continued to act nervous, Storm went to sleep. Hubby commented how awesome it was she wasn't afraid of storms. (Our last GSD was terrified of them.)

2. Dogs barking in nearby yards don't draw her attention. Nor do crickets, birds, or the rabbits rattling their cages when she is nearby.

3. She doesn't respond when we talk to her.

4. After hubby and I realized perhaps she couldn't hear, we tested: the clicker, banging pots together, calling her, snapping, clapping, yelling, whistling...while she was awake. She never turned her head away from my daughter. (We were behind her.)

5. After she fell asleep, we tried clapping, banging pots, yelling, whistling. Nothing. She awakens the instant you touch her.

Am I expecting too much too soon? COULD she (I hope) be ignoring us? (And when I say she does nothing, I mean, NOTHING, her ears don't twitch, her head doesn't move, there is NO body language to indicate anything was heard at all. This seems very odd to me for a puppy.)

We have a vet appointment today, but what I've found in web searches is that vets will test her hearing much the way we have, and the gold standard is having BAER testing done. How long should I wait before I take her for BAER testing? (I already sent an email to the closest facility that does the testing that I could find, to see what the cost was and whether I need a vet referral or not.)
 

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I don't have enough experience with pups to be able to answer your question, but wanted to respond and tell you I'm thinking of y'all and your puppy. Hope all is good after the vet appt and puppy checks out fine.

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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I can tell you that my pup is pretty bomb proof with noise if he is focused on something. He's not bothered by clapping, thunder, other dogs barking, me trying to get his attention ... nothing. Sound does NOT bother him. I could swear he was deaf .. except he's not. He's just ignoring me and not rattled by sound. I can't speak for your pup, however.
 

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Wow, that does sound to me like she could be deaf. Where did you get her from? What kind of environment was she raised in? Have you contacted the breeders and discussed this? I would think that the breeders would have noticed something "off" in this puppy after 8 or 9 weeks in their care. Or did this pup come from a shelter? Is that where the age confusion comes from?

Other than not reacting to sound, is she acting like a normal puppy? Playful, curious, seeking out attention, and investigating her new environment? Or is she acting shut down and withdrawn?
 

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Lucia, I agree.

When I first started reading your post I thought this is good, a puppy that is not spooked by loud noises, etc. BUT getting to the part of your post when there's no response if you talk to her, no turning her head, etc. that is alarming. But a touch does get a response.

I would schedule a vet appointment and also contact the breeder, if she did come from one.

I sure hope she's not deaf but if she is this can certainly be managed. I know we have had members who have a deaf dog or did at one time. I'm sure there would be support & recommendations. But first you need to find out what your really dealing with.
 

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She could be deaf.

Just wanted to tell you it's not the end of the world and keep your chin up!! :)

There is a deaf dog on my flyball team. There are some great things with it too, he is more focused on his job, because he does not have the distraction of noises around him. Hearing him barking and whining is hilarious, because he can't hear himself. It's endearing, we all get a laugh out of him.

Training was challenging, but it was not impossible. He's trained off hand signals. And GSD's are very intelligent and focused dogs, so I'm sure it's got to be easier than training a terrier mix! lol

I'd be careful about off leash stuff, since you won't have recall if he's not watching you.

But it's possible to have a well trained nice dog who's deaf. It just takes a bit of a different approach to train them, but it's very doable!
 

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I hope the vet has some encouraging news for you. But I also agree this is not the end of the world.

Just a thought, my dogs wear e-collars outside, and I use two quick taps on the vibrate function (at a very low setting) for recall sometimes...mostly after dark when the dogs stray too far into the shadows where I'm losing sight of them, and I don't want to shout outside my neighbor's window. That might be a tool worth looking into at some point down the road :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
She did come from a breeder, but I am going to skip answering the other questions about that for now. I will say for any new person reading this thread, PLEASE read the Choosing a Breeder thread before placing a deposit on your puppy. PLEASE. I did not find it (or this website) until I had already paid for my puppy.

Since we "discovered" she may be deaf, I've done a lot of reading on deaf dogs, so I know it isn't the end of the world, but it's REALLY heartbreaking right now. I have a toddler, I am VERY concerned about startle snapping/biting. Other than that, her being deaf IS a big deal...but it can be dealt with, and our plans for Storm will have to be modified. We will cope.

She's sleeping by her water bowl right now, so I set my cell to the most obnoxious, loud, vary-ing tone ringtone I could find and laid it beside her head. I had hubby call it. Nothing. No response at all. :cry:

Vet appointment is in an hour and a half. Closest BAER testing to me is in Denver, I'm waiting for a call back from them to find out costs and to make an appointment.

I'm pretty bummed out right now :( If she is deaf, our first purchase will be a vibrating collar, and we'll go from there.
 

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I do feel for you. It is pretty discouraging. It is nice to see your level of commitment, though. She's fortunate to have landed with you!
 

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I don't think I would do expensive testing. It's fortunate you've discovered it now and she doesn't know any different so you can just work with her. All of my senior dogs went deaf and adapted just fine (no snapping at people, etc.).

Great that you are doing the reading and will begin training with hand signals. I actually train puppies with hand signals first and then add the verbal command so it really isn't that difficult.

I would join this yahoo group for deaf dogs: deafdogs : The deafdogs mailing list is for people with dogs that are deaf.

I'm sure they will have great resources. And I'm sure you already found this one: DDEAF Training Tips

Good for you for taking your commitment to this pup seriously!
 

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I'm sorry for your concerns, I'll keep my fingers crossed for you:hug:
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I'm going to start a new thread in the chat room. She IS deaf, the breeder has been notified, and says they will make it right. Hubby and I are at odds as to the right way to make it right, and I would love some knowledgeable advice.
 

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I'm going to start a new thread in the chat room. She IS deaf, the breeder has been notified, and says they will make it right. Hubby and I are at odds as to the right way to make it right, and I would love some knowledgeable advice.
I'm really sorry to hear that. I would post in the Health Issues thread. Will you keep her?
 

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I'm also very sorry to hear the diagnoses:( I do not know much about deaf dogs...does this usually go hand in hand with another more serious health issue? Or usually isolated to this one disability? One thing is for certain, you are very in tune with this little girl & knew something wasn't right. Alot would have not caught on right away.

I would also recommend staying in the health issue section & linking this thread to your new one.
 

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I am sad to read this, especially for the puppy. But even you guys, My best wishes and prayer for you all, hope you figure out a way to do this.

I am sure you will receive plenty of guidance from some awesome people here.

I just want to say, from what little experience I have, that GSD puppies focus on their handler a lot more than any other breed. They are constantly looking at you. I found ours would stare at me for long moments and kept me in view all the time. And I did not know to take advantage of it back then :/

So perhaps keep yours tethered to you as much as you can. Every time she looks at you, treat her. So just reinforce her looking at you so she will keep doing it. And you can start the training with hand signals already. Just the sit and down.

Hugs!
 
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