A few months ago, I realized that Bella is losing her hearing. It’s not totally gone yet, but she definitely has trouble hearing. When she does hear a sound, she seems to have trouble figuring out where it’s coming from. (Is your dog experiencing hearing loss too? Check out some of these tips.)
Initially, I was kind of sad about this realization. After all, my baby puppy is not as young as she used to be. However, I’ve come to realize that there are a few benefits to this new state of affairs. (Plus, deaf dogs rock!)
Should you find yourself in a similar situation, try to look on the bright side of life.
You might find that there are some silver linings to that seemingly dark cloud. (After all, we should always rely on Spamalot for important life lessons.) Here are a few good things I’ve discovered about having a dog that’s losing her hearing…
- Storm phobia? What storm phobia? Bella used to lose her mind at the first sound of thunder, but now she sleeps right through even the worst storms.
- The jury is still out on fireworks, but I’m hoping that she won’t be able to hear those either. If so, we’re two for two.
- I don’t have to worry about bothering her while I’m cleaning house or doing laundry. The activity (including opening and closing of doors) used to disturb her naps, but now she doesn’t notice (although I do take care not to startle her).
- The smoke alarm battery started screeching last night. She slept through it, unlike the rest of us, who reacted… not so well.
- It’s given us the chance to develop a secret language of sorts. Because she can’t hear me, we’ve developed a series of hand signals that she responds to.
- Watching Bella quickly adapt to her new situation (including intuitively picking up those hand signals I mentioned) has been pretty amazing. I’m proud of how resilient she truly is.
- As a fringe benefit, I’ve noticed that Tavish is picking up on these hand signals as well. I guess he wants to be like his big sister?
- Doorbells on television do not bug her anymore. (Also, she can’t judge me for watching bad TV, since she can no longer identify the theme songs.)
- Bella sleeps pretty soundly, as tiny noises don’t wake her up. Although Tavish still needs a snooze alarm, Bella no longer demands breakfast before dawn.
- I occasionally get to enjoy a snack in (relative) peace, as she no longer hears the crinkling of a bag from two floors away. (Honestly, I used to think that she could hear me even thinking about having a snack.)
- I can always beat her at a game of Name That Tune (or at SongPop, for you modern kids with your newfangled smartphones).
Has your dog lost her hearing? Have you discovered any unexpected upside to your dog losing her hearing or eyesight? How have you adapted? Share your experience in the comments!