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So very, very mad.

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  • So very, very mad.

    I'm sure some of you remember my thread on how much I hated group classes with Castiel.

    Tonight, at work, we happened to have in the head of that particular training school to talk to customers and offer advice as a Customer Appreciation Event. For note, I had emailed for almost a week and a half with this woman about whether or not the class I was looking at for Castiel would be appropriate. She had ASSURED me it was appropriate for a deaf dane and that we would have a WONDERFUL time.

    We didn't. We were ignored. Some of the ways we were told to teach things were downright dangerous (call from play/another dog was adapted for Cas as "stick a fistfull of food in between two dogs and hope yours is the one who notices first") and others just stupid (I, who weigh 120 lbs and has two feet for traction and a high centre of gravity am supposed to teach 'leave it' by dragging my 140 lb dog, with four feet for traction and a MUCH lower centre of gravity away from the really awesome jackpot treat on the ground and rewarding when he's finally far enough away that he looks away from it). It took 10 minutes one night to get the instructor's attention to help us adapt an exercise for Cas, while she purposefully turned away from us every time she spotted my raised hand.

    So I described this to the owner of the school tonight and told her it was at another training school we'd been to before hers. She informed me that this was an ENTIRELY normal experience for a deaf dane. You can't expect much from them, after all. Sit and MAYBE walking on a leash nicely. That's it.

    And of course we're failing at teaching him anything if he doesn't respond to a flashlight as a clicker. When I said that he honestly didn't seem to see it or have any interest in it whatsoever, doesn't seem to notice if it's on or off, she informed me that, if he wasn't paying attention to the flashlight, he just wasn't hungry enough. SHE wouldn't feed him at all unless he showed a sign of responding to the flashlight, then he'd get one bite at a time. He would not get any food. Unless he showed that he saw the flashlight. So that's where we went so wrong from the beginning. We didn't FORCE HIM to respond to a flashlight as a clicker. Flashlights are the ONLY thing that works as a clicker.

    And when I said that he'd recently been discovered to have difficulties seeing things that weren't in motion, she flat out told me to give up, because he'll never be any better than he is. He's just lucky someone pities him enough to keep him.

    And it's unfair to ask your instructors for extra help adapting exercises for your deaf dog, btw, in a group class, even if you come in early or leave late. You should figure out what you need to figure out before you come to the class so you can apply it. You might be able to teach two or three more commands (adding onto the sit and walk nicely that are all you can expect to get from a deafie) if you went with one-on-one classes, but that was all even one-on-one training could do for you.

    And when I emailed with her before I gave her my money, this woman told me that her group classes were entirely appropriate for Cas and he would be able to participate fully in all activities.

    Oh, and btw, Cas, who is only 35.5 inches and 140 lbs, is the biggest dane she's ever seen in all her 20 years of training, so maybe I ought to think about just getting a smaller dog instead, dear, because you're a little small.

    I'm SO mad I gave her money. SO MAD.
    1 Great Dane - Castiel (white-deaf and visually impaired). 4 cats - Shinigami, Peter Parker, Dial Home Device aka DHD and Mobile Analytical Laboratory Probe aka MALP. 3 reformed feeder rats - Steve , Tony and Bruce. 1 sugar glider - Donna.

    A home with a wealth of animals, on our journey to becoming a home with a wealth of animals and a dearth of clutter.

  • #2
    o.m.g. I would be mad too. WOW!!!
    Chris, Wife to Dave, and Mom three human teenagers.
    Also mom to Tori (11 yo Lab), , Ayla (2 yo brindle dane), Milo (2 yo boxer), Killian (4 week old iw pup who is still with his breeder and mommy) 3 kittens, 2 horses, multiple reptiles, 7 fainting goats, 25 chickens, and 2 pot bellied pigs, all of whom make life great!
    RIP CARLIE 2/09-2/11 & REILLY 10/4/08-11/20/12, best friends together forever now.

    sigpic

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    • #3
      Wow she sounds completely incompetent! Don't lose faith though, you will find a trainer that is right for you and Cas. AND look at all the wonderful hearing/sight impaired dogs on this forum... somehow I doubt alls they do is sometimes sit an walk on a leash!
      Love is being owned by a Great Dane.sigpic

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      • #4
        wow...

        that's horrible and I'm sorry you had to go through that..
        Be the change you want to see in the world!

        Odin's Adventures

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        • #5
          Originally posted by bama86 View Post
          Wow she sounds completely incompetent! Don't lose faith though, you will find a trainer that is right for you and Cas. AND look at all the wonderful hearing/sight impaired dogs on this forum... somehow I doubt alls they do is sometimes sit an walk on a leash!
          We have an awesome behaviourist right now that we're working with. When we get the behaviourist-level issues sorted out, we'll accept a referral from her to a trainer.


          And seriously. The best agility dog I ever personally knew was a deaf aussie named Foster. He was amazing and completely deaf.
          1 Great Dane - Castiel (white-deaf and visually impaired). 4 cats - Shinigami, Peter Parker, Dial Home Device aka DHD and Mobile Analytical Laboratory Probe aka MALP. 3 reformed feeder rats - Steve , Tony and Bruce. 1 sugar glider - Donna.

          A home with a wealth of animals, on our journey to becoming a home with a wealth of animals and a dearth of clutter.

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          • #6
            A good business would give you your money back. Like, "We thought we'd be able to accommodate your dog, but since we are unable to, please accept our apologies and let us refund your money." NOT tell you your dog is hopeless. Are you freaking kidding me!?

            Yea I'm pulling this card out again..... write negative reviews online. Copy and paste and put it on all of them. Don't be as detailed as you were on here, but let others know how they screwed you over.
            sigpic
            <, and Stef
            <'
            What do you call cheese that isn't yours? Macho Cheese!!

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            • #7
              Ugh! This infuriates me! Search the archives for deaf Dane agility for the story of ocean and send THAT to the dumba$$ trainer. Ocean is no aussie in her agility run, but it will make you burst with happiness at their success.
              sigpicKelly

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              • #8
                I would be furious! One of my pet peeves is someone telling me that they will do something and then not doing it especially someone who is being paid to provide the service they promised. I hope you find what you are looking for in a trainer.

                Btw, good on you for "taking pity" on Cas . What a stupid woman that trainer must be!
                sigpic
                Hamish: Great Dane born July 25 2011
                Sophie: English Mastiff born May 30 2009
                Visit my blog at http://gonetothebigdogs.wordpress.com/

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                • #9
                  Oh I'm so mad for both you and Castiel! What an ignorant, uninformed a$$!s
                  My little Bogartsigpic

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                  • #10
                    What a bigoted, ignorant, unscrupulous, money grubbing, lying jerk! How do some people sleep at night, I've always wondered?

                    It's obvious she knows nothing about deaf dogs, and she, her trainers, deaf dogs and owners are missing a wonderful opportunity in so many areas!

                    Everything she said (and what she did) was offensive to me, and so wrong! A dog like Cas, with so much intelligence and potential can certainly be trained to do anything a hearing dog can do. It IS a challenge to mark a behavior SOMETIMES with a deafie, but it can certainly be done with a variety of markers such as laser lights, vibration collars, hand signals or facial expressions.

                    Unfair to expect the trainers to help? That's their job! THEY are paid to be the experts, if you are supposed to come up with all the exercises, what are you paying them for?

                    I could go on and on, this is just disgusting, unethical behavior for a business.

                    Do they have a Better Business Bureau in Canada? How about a news station that helps people with unscrupulous businesses?
                    sigpic
                    1 husband * 1 teenager * 2 great danes * 2 boxers * 1 cats * 2 African cichlids * 34 land hermit crabs
                    RIP Tyler RIP Smokey
                    http://thegratedanegane.wordpress.com/

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                    • #11
                      Does this trainer's name happen to begin with an A? We took puppy classes there and I think I mentioned before that we actually dropped out. I left the last class we went to early and in tears, and revoked my registration for the next level.
                      Katie & Scarlett
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                      • #12
                        Well, we took our puppy classes with a man whose name started with A, but this is the head of a training school, the initials of which are WWW? and her intials are GR. Same experiences both places but I was just floored by her attitude being totally different when I talked to her in person vs. when I was emailing her before putting him in the classes.
                        1 Great Dane - Castiel (white-deaf and visually impaired). 4 cats - Shinigami, Peter Parker, Dial Home Device aka DHD and Mobile Analytical Laboratory Probe aka MALP. 3 reformed feeder rats - Steve , Tony and Bruce. 1 sugar glider - Donna.

                        A home with a wealth of animals, on our journey to becoming a home with a wealth of animals and a dearth of clutter.

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                        • #13
                          That's terrible. I have had 5 Great Danes throughout the years and the 2 I have right now are both deaf and their eye sight isn't perfect. They are very smart though and know over 20 signs. I think if you work with your dog, he'll be great!
                          Mom to Leonardo and Titus

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                          • #14
                            I don't get it, deaf dogs are just deaf. They just can't hear. It seems they should have a collar that can give a vibe when off leash, or if the dog is very attentive and naturally willing to keep an eye you. Many of the highly trained off leash dogs I see continuously look back for visual signals from their owners.
                            Seems to me the key to training a deaf dog is encouraging them to visually check back. Or get a collar and train them to associate a vibe with 'hey look at me'

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                            • #15
                              Wow, I'm surprised GR is the one giving you trouble. She has been around FOREVER so maybe she's a little bit old school. The instructor I had was female, her name began with A.
                              Katie & Scarlett
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