How do blind dogs navigate? Find Out Here

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MYTH: Blind dogs are high-maintenance. Reality: Blind dogs do not require extraordinary amounts of care, nor are they difficult to take care of, unless there is a medical or behavioral issue that is separate from their blindness. They likely require no more attention to detail than a sighted dog.

MYTH: You can’t move the furniture. They are always bumping into things and items get broken all the time. Reality: Blind dogs map out their areas fairly quickly, sometimes in only one day. They can go up and down stairs, run through the yard, and even jump on the furniture to find the best place to nap! Of course, stairs and other areas where they may injure themselves should be gated.

MYTH: Blind and blind-deaf dogs can’t enjoy life so it’s humane to put them down. Reality: If they can smell, taste, hear your voice talking and feel you petting them, they’re enjoying life. They enjoy the same things sighted dogs do: walks, belly rubs, meal time, play time and more!

MYTH: Blind pets are no longer guardians of the home. Reality: They still know when the mailman or anyone else is at the door and can let you know it. In fact, I have sighted and blind dogs in my house and my blind dog is the only one who alerts me to strangers nearby.

MYTH: Blind dogs are helpless and training a blind dog is more difficult. Reality: Blind dogs are completely trainable. People forget that vision is not the primary sense in dogs. It may be for people, but not for dogs! The fact is dogs don’t need sighted eyes to live a normal, healthy and fun life. Blind dogs can even participate in agility training!

Try a new water dish.

A fountain-style dog bowl that constantly circulates water is practical for a blind dog because it makes noise. The sound of running water will help your dog more easily find it.

Even pets who haven’t lost their sight enjoy ambient noise. Keeping a TV or radio on while you’re gone not only orients your dog to different rooms of the house, it also reduces feelings of loneliness.

Tips for helping a blind dog adjust – Series 2 Ep 1

On International Blind Dog Day, our RSPCA animal life magazine editor, Hannah Doyle shares fond memories of her dog Dave – and offers advice on caring for blind and visually challenged pets.