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Thread: OT Needind advice from Black Forest and other dog trainers.

  1. #1
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    Default OT Needind advice from Black Forest and other dog trainers.

    My son's dog, a very active five year old suddenly became blind last week. The vet calls it uveitis and thought it would be temporary.
    Turns out he was wrong. Heartbreaking to watch her try to adjust.

    I am hanging different sounding wind chimes around the property to give her some directional bearings. And placing door mats at key positions so she can tell where she is by feeling the mats.

    I want to teach her to turn left or right by voice command. I know you work with your sheep dogs and I am hoping for some coaching on how to teach a dog new tricks.

  2. #2
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    Go watch all her videos;

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-q...k6bfs3UZuue6IQ

    If you're more of a reader, go read Karen Pryer's book, "Don't Shoot the Dog."

  3. #3
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    That does suck to have to watch but keep in mind they are resilient creatures and sometimes i think it's us who suffer more just watching as they seem to just want to figure it out and do what they can do so keeping them occupied is key and I know a tall order...

    When the "Pig" had her stroke I was about in tears for three straight days, she could not walk and had to even re-learn how to drink water out of her dog bowl, she could not even look at anything straight, her eyes would drift off to one side then re-connect for a split second and then drift all over again never resting,,, it was horrible to watch and I would say the vast majority of people would have thrown in the towel right there and had her put down ---- but little by little she got almost everything back, they are fighters. and even if the dog never see's again it will adjust and be ok, also keep this in mind - that nose rules most part of the brain to begin with - so smell is going to be even more important,

    im thinking food and other dog smells will keep your dog from slipping into a depression,

    good luck with all of this and keep us posted.

  4. #4
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    Hi,

    Usually, when I train for voice, whistle, or hand commands, I start with voice, then when they learn what the voice command means, I then add the alternate command sound/signal.

    So in your case, I would start by walking the dog on a lead. Then when you say left, for example, steer the dog to the left. Repeat as a daily training session for only about 10 minutes at a time, (dogs get bored and frustrated). Always train praise and end your session with a command you know the dog can obey. Only teach one command at a time before moving to the next one. Review past leaned commands. You can have multiple training sessions over the day if you like.

    Be patient, this isn't going to be easy of quick. It is sad when things like this happen. My two old dogs are slowly losing their hearing and sight both and can no longer hunt. They are very sad come fall when the two youngsters get to go hut and they must stay home.
    If you think you understand what is going on, you haven't been paying attention.

  5. #5
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    Can't offer any advice but sorry to hear of the poor things blindness, a suggestion, can't dogs use smell to navigate (I'm told they do that in the dark?)
    Mark

  6. #6
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    It will bother you more than the dog. The dog will adjust and get along fine. If the dog went blind suddenly that will be harder on the dog but you will be surprised at how fast the dog will learn to use it's nose for everything. I have a blind dog now. He went blind slowly with PRA. He gets along fine and navigates all over our farm. We have a lot of electric fences and I have never seen him run into one. The only thing he runs into is me when we are out walking. He gets along just fine but he is a Border Collie and smarter than other breeds of dogs.

    One thing to check is the pressure in the eyeball. Did your vet check that? If the pressure gets too high the dog will be in a lot of pain.
    How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

  7. #7
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    What breed of dog is it? Also if the vet is not specifically trained in ophthalmology and have the specialized equipment to do testing and thorough eye exams then you might look for a vet that does have this special training. I fortunately live 15 km away from one of the leading vet eye doctors in Europe.
    How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

  8. #8
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    Thank you for the advice All.

    This is 1-800miners son.

    The dog is a Black Mouth Cur as far as I know. She looks quite a bit like a Rhodesian Ridgeback, but a little smaller and without the ridge.

    The vet I took her too recommended an ophthalmologist as well, and the closest one he could find was about a 4 to 5 hour drive. My own research hasn't revealed anything closer either.

    She is actually accommodating much better over the last few days. We have already put up a few wind chimes and mats for her. I have started teaching her "stop". The first few times she just cocked her head sideways towards me, as she walked straight into a wall or door. Now she freezes and sniffs around to try and find the reason I said stop. I will be starting with the left and right in the next couple days.

    Thank you for the advice once again and I will check out that book.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1-800miner View Post
    Thank you for the advice All.

    This is 1-800miners son.

    The vet I took her too recommended an ophthalmologist as well, and the closest one he could find was about a 4 to 5 hour drive. My own research hasn't revealed anything closer either.
    Isn't your dog worth a drive?
    A delay may make a treatable condition permanent.

  10. #10
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    update: Don't know how it happened but she is seeing well enough to chase rabbits.
    It may recur again. We will see.

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