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Deaf Jack Russell

by Laura Walding
(Sioux City, Iowa)

My four month white Jack Russell puppy seems to not listen or hear anything. For example today she was sleeping, I held my keys next to her ear and nothing. How do I train her? How do I know if she is really deaf?

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Oct 26, 2010
Deaf white Jack Russell
by: Tom

Hi Laura,

Unfortunately, it wouldn't surprise me if your pup is deaf. You say she's white - there is a proven link between the gene for whiteness in dogs and the gene for deafness, so all-white dogs tend to be more at risk of going deaf that others.

That said, you can still train her easily. Just replace voice commands with hand signals, and instead of saying "Good dog" or using a clicker to mark good behaviors, simply use a flash from a flashlight.

Oct 25, 2010
deaf JRT
by: Anonymous

I think that a vet visit would be to start it off then your going to have to teach her with hand signals. Make sure you make eye contact. They are smart enough to even learn some easy sign language. If anything get a DVD for young children to learn some and then use what ever signals for other things like when you want her to sit tap her butt, lay down tap the floor in front of her. It took me 3 weeks to teach my one year old how to give a paw. But I kept with it and now hes good about it.
good luck

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