Deaf Dogs Hear With Their Heart

 

Advocate Speaks-Up For Deaf Shelter Dogs 

Dog and His Boy PetSmart Charities

As a professional blogger and trainer, Bernard Lima-Chavez uses his voice to support animal rescue efforts and to help train “unadoptable” pets. When he met Edison, a deaf dog, Bernard realized his actions would speak louder than words. 

 

“So many deaf dogs living in shelters face the threat of euthanasia. Often, these are big, adult, untrained dogs who just need love and someone to teach them hand signs.”

 

Edison, a 10-week-old puppy, was up for adoption at The Humane Society of Greater Miami where Bernard worked as a veterinary technician.

 

“When I locked eyes with Edison, he felt like family,” Bernard recalls. “It was an immediate connection. ”Adopting Edison would be a leap of faith as Bernard had never attempted to work with a deaf dog. “I was curious, intrigued and a little bit scared,” he recalled. 

 

Although he had plenty of love to give, Bernard was already sharing his heart and home with two rescue dogs. And, despite his expertise in shelter medicine, Bernard questioned his ability to properly raise and train and deaf dog. So he brought Edison home as a foster dog first. “Within thirty minutes of meeting him, my husband was searching for names.” They landed on Edison, after Thomas Edison who was both hearing-impaired and brilliant.

 

Bernard searched the web for training tips and reassurance. “Sure, we wanted to equip ourselves with what we needed to know, but we also wanted encouragement. We needed to know it was possible to communicate with our hands and body language.”

 

Bernard has since dedicated his life to raising awareness about deaf dogs through his blog, Dog & His Boy: Deaf Dogs and Beyond, where he teaches pet parents that hearing-impaired dogs can live rich, happy lives.

 

“Living with a deaf dog isn’t harder, it’s just different. They are just like a hearing dog, only deaf dogs hear with their hearts.”

 

Read More About Special Needs Pets:

Three-Legged Beagle’s Charm Wins Over First-Time Pet Parents

Fate Helps Deaf Puppy Find the Perfect Family

Remarkable Recovery Tugs on Adopter’s Heartstrings

 

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