Can Cats Learn Sign Language?
There’ll be times in the market that you have encountered a deaf person. Some of us may have parents or grandparents that have degenerative deafness. While some of us have friends that are experiencing deafness. You must have known how hard living with these impairments. Just like us, humans, our cats can go deaf too. It can be environmentally acquired, genetically, degenerative or sometimes an illness can cause deafness to our cats.
As you know how hard it is living with this impairment, there is sign language for cats that you can use to communicate with them effectively. Sign language for cats is different and may need to take time for your deaf cat to learn it. However, the sign language for cats can improve the life of your deaf cat. It can help your cat live a happy life.
How to identify if my cat is deaf?
It may be challenging for us cat owners to know if our cat is deaf especially if they have a hearing cat companion. The hearing cat companion can lead the deaf cat and still look like it is living normally. If you have a sole cat, your cat may depend on vibrations that it will look like normal.
Here are some signs that your cat is deaf or becoming deaf:
- It won’t notice that you have arrived at the house.
- the cat is meowing in a louder volume.
- It doesn’t pay attention to you when you’re calling it.
- When your cat is sleeping, it creates loud sounds.
- It easily gets startled.
- You may also confirm if your cat is deaf at home by:
- Seeing if your cat will respond when you clap your hand while it’s facing away.
- Cling your keys and didn’t respond to the sound.
If you have tried doing what is above and it’s still hard to determine if your cat is deaf. The best decision is to bring your cat to the veterinarian and be checked.
Can Cats Learn Sign Language?
A deaf cat is dependent on its other senses like vision, feelings, and touch. For you to communicate with a deaf cat, you need to take advantage of the usage of other senses.
- Some people choose to use American Sign Language (ASL) for their cats to be trained. While others simplify these signals to one-hand use.
- Vibration is one of the best ways to call your cat’s attention. If you made some searches on the internet, stomping is one of the ways to catch your cat’s attention. Your touch and vibration are essential in communicating with your deaf kitty. Aside from stomping, you may also touch twice the place you want your kitty to go to. The example, you want your cat to sit at the edge of your bed. While your cat’s attention is drawn to you, you can stomp twice or thrice the edge of your bed. By doing that, your cat will understand that you want it to stay and sit at the edge of your bed.
- Flashing and pointing light to catch your cat’s attention. This can help to attract your cat’s attention to know that you’re around.
- Lastly, you may create your sign and own secret language so you and your cat can communicate well.
One thing is very important too, you have to teach these signs and activities to your family and whoever that will be around your cat. This is to help everyone and your cat have good communication. This will relieve distress and anxiety for your deaf cat because it can communicate and belong to everyone at home.
How can I stimulate learning to a deaf cat?
A deaf cat is capable to learn regardless if the cat is deaf by birth or by aging. An aged cat with degenerative hearing loss can still learn new tricks and figure out new hand gestures. While other deaf cats can learn to walk with a leash, so they can stay safe when going out of the house with you.
You can stimulate learning to your cat by doing some of the following:
- To stimulate learning by playing, toys are very essential for your cat’s sensory. As they are very dependent on their sensory, the feather and moving toys can heighten their prey hunting skills.
- Create a routine schedule whereas you can teach your cat when is meal time, where is meal time.
- Use treats to inspire what you mean to your cat.
- Use body language to tell your kitty that you’re please or unpleased of what she did. When you’re pleased you can make a thumbs up with a happy face and lightly pet your cat in the forehead. When you’re displeased, you can give a thumbs down and some frown.
- Some professionals can help you stimulate learning for a deaf cat.
In teaching and stimulating learning, a deaf cat requires patience, work, effort, time and creativity. You’ll find it very rewarding when your cat learns all your teachings. Remember that cats are intelligent and independent, so they’ll do their best to learn and adapt to survive.
The danger of having a deaf cat
Never allow your kitty to go outside the house unsupervised. Deaf cats even though relying on their other senses cannot hear when danger is about to come. You need to train a deaf cat to have the comfort of staying at home to keep it safe.
Outside, there could be some danger that may risk the cat’s life. It can be the busy traffic and a deaf cat cannot hear the honking. Plus, the vibration of the vehicle from afar is not felt that quick by a cat which may cause a fatal risk to your kitty.
Having a deaf cat may be not easy because it requires time, effort, patience and creativity to train one. However, at the end, when the cat learns it’s rewarding for you as a parent. Lastly, keep your cat safe by keeping it at home. Ever encounter a deaf cat? Do you have one? Share your experience.