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Pet Health Concerns: Deafness

Deafness doesn’t just occur in the human species, it can occur in a variety of cat and dog breeds as well. Pets may acquire deafness at birth and it can get progressively worse as they age. Deafness is not any more common in one breed or another and it can be caused by several reasons. Deafness can occur as a result of eardrum damage, diseases such as distemper, toxic drugs such as certain antibiotics, and even ear trauma. The ear drum, it’s inner structures and nerves can cease functioning properly and deafness can result. Aminoglycoside is an antibiotic that is known to cause deafness if not applied properly. It is important that if your pet is prescribed to use it that you consult with your veterinarian.

Pets with hearing disabilities can be diagnosed using the Brainstem Auditory Evoked Potential, or BAER test. Unfortunately there is no treatment for pets with hearing impairment, however, it is manageable. Pets can be trained to understand hand signals or commands using lights. Pets with hearing impairments may be more prone to accidents if they do not hear warnings or commands so it is important to train your pet accordingly .

To learn more about Deafness in pets, check out our Pet Health Concerns Guide. By enrolling your pet with Trupanion pet insurance, your cat or dog’s policy will include coverage for diagnostic tests, medications, surgeries, hereditary and congenital disorders, as long as treatment for a certain condition is required after enrolling and is not pre-existing.

Has your cat or dog ever been diagnosed with this deafness? If so, we would love to hear from you and any comments, advice, experiences or thoughts on this condition.

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2 Responses to Pet Health Concerns: Deafness

  1. Kristine says:

    My childhood dog, a purebred Siberian Husky, gradually became deaf as she aged. By the time we had to say goodbye she couldn’t hear anything at all. When I woke her to take her for a walk, I had to touch her on the back and she would jump ten feet in the air. Because she was around fourteen when her hearing loss began we considered it just a part of her getting older. But I wonder now if it wasn’t caused by something else.

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