|Training News & Tips|
Teaching deaf dogs sign languagePosted: Jun 06, 2012 10:22 PM EDT Updated: Jun 06, 2012 11:01 PM EDT By Kristin Kane, Reporter
HOUSTON (FOX 26) -
A new canine training facility in Montgomery County is teaching deaf dogs sign language.
Mica is an adorable 1-year-old Catahoula and he's deaf so because he can't hear vocal commands, the folks at Circle K9 have trained him to respond to hand signals and body language.
You would think dog trainer David Ketterer is just teaching Mica basic commands like sit, stay and come but if you look a little closer, he's actually teaching the 1-year old Catahoula sign language.
You see Mica is deaf and his original owner got rid of him when he wasn't being obedient.
"Normally the dog becomes problematic before they even try to find a solution," said David.
But David is helping find that solution at his new training facility, Circle K9 in Magnolia.
"It's just like we talk about how in society, people with a handicap don't want to be viewed as having a handicap, they want to be treated like normal folks, same with dogs. The challenging part in teaching a deaf dog is establishing a way of talking with the dog," said David.
David says it's not a language he's invented; it's a language he's taken from the canine sporting world and applied to the pet world.
"With the AKC competition stuff you see dogs with jumping, say you want to jump here, the dog is in sit, and I cast my dog over that way, it's the same principles," said David.
He admits it's harder to train a deaf dog though because his mechanism for positive reinforcement is not there.
So he constantly has to reward Mica with treats rather than saying "good boy" and giving him the occasional treat.
And when he's a bad boy …
"When I correct him, notice that I have a pinch collar on him and it is a very subtle way of getting his attention," said David.
With David's help over just a 2 week period, Mica has now mastered sign language and good behavior all he needs now is a loving home with strong leadership and patience.
"He's a super fellow, will love you to death, loves his belly rubbed, nice dog and I would love to find him a good home," said David.
Circle K9 is located in Magnolia, Texas (just outside of Houston). Run by loving dog owners and a certified trainer, Andrea and David Ketterer’s Houston dog kennel facility sits on a five acre estate for the sole purpose of training and boarding dogs. Dog Training is a passion and way of life for David and Andrea that throughout the years became their profession and the basis for
Circle K9’s dog boarding facility is situated in a country environment with a large pond and plenty of shady trees. The dog kennels are located in a climate controlled indoor facility with outdoor kennels and large runs as well. While staying at Circle K9’s Houston boarding facility your dog will benefit from our huge individual 11’ x 21’ outdoor run areas, and sleep in their personal 4’ x 8’ indoor kennel with elevated Kuranda beds. At Circle K9 we believe the dogs
Quality dog training is the core of our business. Andrea and David feel that when conflicts occur between a dog and owner it is when messages are unclear and not properly understood. The key in our Houston dog training program is to teach individuals to understand that all dogs learn differently. Circle K9 is here to help; not only to educate the dog but also its owner.
Specialty Training is offered by Circle K9 of Texas, training such as Schutzhund, protection, narcotics, tracking, and competition obedience. Our goal is to see our Houston training program dogs educated and available to work with a variety of Police and Military Agencies. Or simply to see them successfully integrated within their adoring family.
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Circle K9 featured on FOX 26 News!
Wednesday, 06 June 2012