Saturday, January 5, 2008

Deaf-Blind Dogs Can Lead a Normal Life!

While I appreciate some of Carl's blogs/vlogs on about deafhood and linguistics when it comes to people, I was disheartened and saddened by what he expressed and how this deaf and blind puppy had to endure based on what he said in his vlog.

There were some things I noticed that were not done appropriately that may have contributed to this puppy's fear. Puppies do not come out of the womb afraid for no reason. Nothing doesnt seem to be done carefully and slowly to allow this puppy time for adjustment with every new thing at a time but instead was bombarded with everything thrown at its way. This is pretty obvious because this puppy was brought home at one month old or so and already given up within a few months with everything I read that shouldn't happen. This puppy was set up to fail. It is my observation that this puppy had a bad start and is not at fault.

#1 -- This puppy wasn't given time to bond and develop trust with one person who'll become its master, become familiar and comfortable with its home environment/territory and learn commands before introducing to other humans or animals, one by one with plenty of time space in between.

#2 -- This puppy with these special needs should not be in a home with young children and would be better off with one adult or two in the home. Who can expect children this young, 10, 8 and 6 not to leave things around, tease the dog or step on it? No one should be allowed to throw a ball at a deaf and blind dog or expect it to fetch a ball. Throwing ball, as common sense indicates, is inaccessible therefore not accomodating for this kind of dog. Tug of war rope or some kind of independent toys that it plays on its own would suit a deaf-blind dog.

#3 -- Why change dog food when the puppy was eating the old dog food and let it starve? Too much changes in short time is not good at all. With the puppy not being toilet trained, go figure with everything that has gone wrong from the start and at that age.

#4 -- Deaf animals require touching to replace the lack of sound along with sight but with a deaf-blind dog, it requires a whole lot more of touching to make up for lack of sound AND sight. It depends on tactile communication. I do not see any of this and I perfectly can see why this puppy gets frightened by touch it hardly was exposed to.

Just because a person is deaf and works with deaf or deaf-blind people doesn't make the person qualified to consult or train about a deaf or deaf-blind animals just as much as just because the person is hearing and works with hearing people doesn't make the person qualified to consult or train a hearing animal. There are people experienced and/or specialized in caring for those kind of animals.

With that said, the puppy was in the hands of people who do not know how to deal with a deaf and blind dog. It has absolutely nothing to do with the puppy being blind on top of being deaf that failed him. It is human who failed this puppy and the puppy chose to stay at one place and not move because it has no clue and has given up trying. I can imagine it being confused and scared. It won't surprise me if this puppy was euthanized by sheer arrogance and ignorance of some people involved.

There are success stories of deaf-blind dogs who lead a normal life by people who know how to deal with them rather than giving up and blaming on their blindness. Who are we, deaf people, to talk like that about blindness when the majority in our society views our deafness just like how deaf people views those who are blind? Anything deaf is not superior than anything deaf-blind when it comes to animals. For anyone in deaf community to say that, is it a projection that also meant deaf-blind people as well are inferior to us, deaf people?

Check this link at and it has a lot of wonderful resources as a guide for deaf-blind dogs and I absolutely concur with it. Reading this will show that this deaf-blind puppy did not receive proper care and training. It took this deaf-blind dog in this link a year to learn this one thing.

Here is youtube of deaf-blind dog playing with blind dog and article about deaf-blind dog that were posted on this blog a while ago:

Deaf-Blind and Blind Dogs Having Fun

Hearing Dog Found Deaf-Blind Dog

Here is a few links of and about deaf-blind dogs:

This blog will close with this quote:

"It is the ultimate test of our worth as individuals and countries how we treat the most vulnerable and disadvantaged."
Sir William Deane, Former Governor General, Australia.


  1. Yeah I agree but that pup may have some additional disabilities. Or Maybe taken away from its mom and siblings too early. Best to adopt both puppiess at the same time otherwise he will lose sense of feelings of its own in the unfamiliar place .... Or possibly too soon to give up ... many theories. I feel for Carl -- it is hard. I wish Carl had contacted you or ask around first for help. I really can't blame Carl thou. I think his hands are tied. Sigh .. I have seen many at my work .. Many deaf/blind dogs/cats can lead happy life (but without brain damaged thou). My heart goes out to the pup.

  2. I believe I mentioned that the puppy was between 6 and 8 weeks. I was with the puppy for almost two months before the family gave it up.