If the dog is blind, life is not much different than with a sighted four-legged friend. The only difference is that his other senses are more pronounced and he relies on them more. The fur nose is not fundamentally dependent on its owner, at least no more than an animal with healthy eyes. We explain which tips and aids can still be useful when dealing with a blind dog.
How Can I Help My Blind Dog?
- Blind dogs are able to lead an (almost) normal life.
- In particular, the senses of taste and smell are all the more pronounced in a blind four-legged friend.
- There are many practical everyday aids that help dogs and households deal with their visual impairment at the beginning.
- The communication between the owner and the fur nose is important to each other.
A Blind Dog in the Household: What’s Different?
When a blind dog moves in, the first thing that changes is what always changes with a pet: You get a new member. The fact that he cannot see anything does not limit the owner or the dog as long as it is not allowed. Despite “useless” eyes, a blind dog can do anything it wants. It is important to know that he also perceives everything through his other senses. He recognizes feeding and sleeping places by the smell as well as masters and/or mistresses as well as other pets in the household. The latter can also prove to be an optimal aid. A blind dog can live together with a guide dog as support.
If the blind dog comes from the animal shelter, it makes sense to find out more about his visual impairment. It is interesting how long he was blind and whether the blindness occurred through old age, an illness, or an accident. This can be decisive for the handling. From time to time blind dogs need aids. But that is not necessarily the case. Some four-legged friends get along just fine without bells, scented oil, or the like. The dog’s behavior decides whether and in what form aids are necessary.
Help for Blind Dogs: Tips for Everyday Life
- Whether a blind dog has to go to dog school depends on what you think is right. Even an animal without eyesight can display one or the other undesirable behavior.
- A blind dog usually needs some support on the stairs. It helps him if the stair step is made recognizable by noises.
- If you want, you can use a label while walking. This is not wrong with animals roaming free, because other walkers are warned. This is why a blind dog often wears a bandana with a marker.
- When a blind dog is disoriented, the best way for the owner to support him is to be around him. It is enough if the four-legged friend is accompanied to the sleeping or feeding place.
- If a blind dog is sleeping on the sofa, it is important to keep the area in front of the furniture clear. If he is frightened, he has a free escape route without injuring himself.
- Basically, it is advisable to set up a certain routine for the four-legged friend. This means constant locations for food and baskets. If a blind dog has special toys, these can also always be stored in the same place. So he can find everything without any problems and straight away.
Practical Tools for the House, Garden, etc.
Portable fences, for example, are well suited for the garden. These are always to be attached as necessary. The same applies to the door and/or stair gates. This is useful if the dog has recently moved into a new household and does not yet know the area well. The small loud bells are less popular with many dog owners. You can carry these bright-sounding aids yourself or attach them to other animals in the household. The blind dog always has an acoustic signal in his ear when someone approaches. For the daily walk, a blind dog can wear a normal harness or special safety belts with collision protection.
When a blind dog bumps its head, owners can treat the problem in two ways. Either all unnecessary obstacles are always removed from his range of motion or he wears head protection for blind dogs. With the latter, however, there is a risk that the animals are not at all enthusiastic about it. Therefore, prevention, i.e. the removal of obstacles, is more advisable. If the dog is blind and deaf, it is advisable to relocate to other aids. Scented oils, for example, help to recognize where the sleeping place and feeding place is through the pronounced sense of smell.
Our recommendation: create trust, introduce signals and treat them as normally as possible.
- Trust is very important when dealing with blind and deaf dogs. The four-legged friend must feel that you trust them to be in situations and that they are safe with you. If he feels your fear, it may be that he is also unsettled.
- Communication also plays a major role. Introduce certain signals and call commands that the blind dog can classify immediately. This also improves the relationship between the owner and the pet. It is also important to make an announcement before the subsequent action. Give the animal-specific instructions on what to do next.
- An animal without eyesight is often very sensitive to stimuli, which is why its reactions are often stronger. Under certain circumstances, this can even appear threatening. Owners and mistresses should therefore always act supportively and, in the best case, recognize when it is getting too much. If a blind dog is depressed, upset, or anxious, patting the head is already too much. But that basically applies to every animal.
- If the pet is not getting along well at all, it makes sense for a blind dog to get a guide dog. The seeing partner is a great help and also becomes the best friend of the four-legged friend.
The most important thing, however, is that you treat your dog as normal. He is just as happy about a treat, a caress, and plenty of exercise as an animal with healthy eyes.