A whisper

I miss it; the drastically reduced volume of a whisper.  Not long ago I could whisper the word "lizard" sending all the dogs into a hunting frenzy.  Not anymore, only one can hear the hushed words now, just Luke.  I find myself whispering to him often these days; it's a good feeling when he raises his ears to hear the barely audible words that I am sending out hoping that he will hear them.

Much of my day is spent bellowing and signaling, thank goodness Tilley still has her vision so I can signal to her instead of yelling all the time.  The yelling isn't really yelling but more of an attempt to send out some vibrations.  I really have nothing to say; I simply blurt out the waves that will hopefully reach them so that both Tilley and Jessie will turn.  What I am finding is that it is very difficult to get their attention with sound waves.  Unfortunately the waves pass them by bouncing on whatever is behind them giving off a false location of my whereabouts.  This is all new, sad yet interesting.  I'm going to try a flashlight; many trainers use flashlights for the deaf dogs as a behavior marker.  Perhaps it will work for my girls.

Whispering is wonderful, that is when your dog can hear a whisper.  A whisper holds much power; somehow a whisper is far more interesting than a louder delivery of the same words.   When I started training as a very inexperienced 13 year old we were taught to belt out our commands; loud and deep.  If you meant business you had to yell; obedience class was far from a calm, relaxing or fun place.  There was no whispering at class, not back then.

 Funny how the term "whisperer" itself has positive connotations.  The Horse Whisperer or the original Dog Whisperer Paul Owens.   I read Paul's book many years ago; he was the original and is still the true Whisperer.  There is no force, no alpha, no yanking.  My husband has always called me the dog whisperer but I have to concede that it is Paul who owns that title.   Dogs use so much more than their hearing; it is in fact a back up.  Reading of body language is used far more than their hearing ability.  You can say a great deal without every uttering a word.  But when you do speak; a whisper is often all that is needed.

Try it; whisper to your dog, you will have their undivided attention.    


  1. I've never responded here. Figured I would give it a try to see if it works. First of all I would like to tell you how much I enjoy reading your stories and viewing your wonderful pictures. I always gain something from reading these.
    My Tyler who is six years old and has PRA also has difficulties hearing and getting worse as time passes. He used to follow my snapping fingers but sadly doesn't respond to that any longer. Now I bang on my thighs. Like you mentioned here the sound probably bounces which is why sometimes he can find me and sometimes not. Lately I've been using a whistle to get his attention. Seems like he picks up on that pretty quickly. Must be tough to see your dogs age but you are so fortunate to still have them with you. I'm so envious. I've had six poos and the longest one has lived was just shy of his eleventh birthday.

  2. I too tried a whistle but it did not work so this is why I believe that they are indeed feeling vibration over hearing. I do feel very lucky and hope to be able to celebrate their 15 and 16th birtday early next year.

    Thanks for commenting, I love when people reach out.



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