Two Deaf Pitties was created to serve as a simple guide to teaching deaf dogs to understand and respond to hand signs.
Before adopting my deaf and visually impaired pit bull, Alfie, I did quite a bit of research on deaf dogs and sign language. I was looking for a single source that had everything I needed to teach Alfie hand signs, and it simply didn’t exist. What I found was that there were plenty of resources that had visual aids for signs, but none explained how to teach them to a dog. After becoming a foster mom to Abe (another deaf pitty), I made a short video of signs for his adoptive family, and was inspired to create this blog as a more detailed teaching tool for new “deafie” owners.
Two Deaf Pitties is intended to help the novice, the shelter worker, the rescue group, and anyone else interested in teaching signs and helping deaf dogs. The more dogs we can train, the more dogs we can save.
The signs used here come from various sources– some are American Sign Language (ASL), some are modified American Sign Language, some are standard obedience signs, some are common gestures, and some are totally made up. While those of us who own deaf dogs have each created our own vocabulary of signs, this is just my version of what I like to call Deaf Dog Sign Language (DDSL). I hope it is helpful, and I always welcome your feedback!
Find us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TwoDeafPitties.