Tinnitus and dog ownership

Discussion in 'Labrador Chat' started by Labsforever, Feb 13, 2021.

  1. Labsforever

    Labsforever Registered Users

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    Hi all

    Sorry in advance as this will be a long post but please stick with it and read it all so you can really understand why i need advice and help in knowing what to do.

    My dream has always been to have a dog but waited till the time was right and I had the time a dog will need. But for awhile I found it hard to find which breed I should get because 4yrs ago now i was dignosed with Tinnitus ( ringing in the ears) i can hear a plane engine type noise in both ears and luckily it mild and i have got used to it but the worst part about the condtion is that it can get worser if im not careful around noise. By this i mean it will get louder. At the moment i cant hear it over the TV ect and only hear it in a quiet room. But if it gets louder then with Severe Tinnitus you can hear it over everything and cant mask it and it makes you go mad and drives you nuts and when its that bad it takes all quality of life away and the rate of suicide is high for severe tinnitus.

    I did struggle in the beginning and was very suicidal , it was hard to try to come to terms that i would have to hear this noise for the rest of my life and now im fine and come out the other end im scared to death of ever it getting worser and going back to that fear of the noise and going back to being suicidal.

    One of the things i can do is prevent being around loud noises as much as possible such as when im on trains and buses i wear earplugs and in busy citys and loud places i wear ear protection but i avoid ect loud places such as clubs, concerts , cinemas ect.

    The reason im telling you all this is because my dream is to own a dog But constant dog barking can make it worser and some people with Tinnitus are fine around dog barking others are not but even those who are fine with dog barking being around it constantly for example can eventually cause a permanent increase in the loudness.

    Now i asked on the tinnitus forum about this and apart from reccomendations of get a cat there silent which i understood why they said that im just not a cat person and am only interested in dogs , the main advice i got was get the quietest dog breed that suits you.
    By quiet they mean one who is not Barking constantly , I myself am fine with dog barking my ears only get annoyed with smaller dogs as there more high pitched or my ears get annoyed if I'm around a dog and they bark constantly for more than 10mins, those who have tinnitus and dogs all recomended labs and Goldens.

    So they said it is possible to own a dog and not worsern Tinnitus but you have to pick a quiet breed. Im also only talking about barking , things like whining and other vocalizations are not loud enough to worsern Tinnitus its only barking and really high pitched noises that are the main issue so they told me to avoid breeds who are more likley to be very Barky.

    I then researched both breeds recomended and I prefer the Labrador and if we ignore my tinnitus then everything else I'm looking for in a dog the Labrador matches so the Labrador is the better of the two for me.

    I really am wanting help on if you feel there all right that Labs are a quiet breed?

    I want to also point out i know all dogs bark and that its there way of communication and luckily my ears are fine with dog barking but if i get a dog for example who barks a lot that will eventually make my condition worser which is why its important i get it right now and I know each dog is an individual but I'm talking more as a general breed and a well need , well trained and socialized Labrador.
     
  2. sarah@forumHQ

    sarah@forumHQ Moderator

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    Hi Labsforever, welcome to the forum :)

    I'm just giving your post a little bump in the hope that you'll get some more replies.

    Unfortunately no one is going to promise that you can find a Lab who won't bark though - there's too much variation between individuals. I'd be cautious of supposedly quite breeds too - I have a whippet, which is supposed to be a very quiet breed, but no one sent him the memo and he loves the sound of his own voice!

    Perhaps adopting an older dog would be a good solution for you? You'll get a proper idea of their adult temperament, and whether they are very noisy.

    I wish you all the best managing your tinnitus, and I hope you find a suitable dog!
     
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  3. J.D

    J.D Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Hi
    I suffer from Ménières (deafness tinnitus and vertigo) and have done for nearly 20 years. Thankfully it is only in one ear.
    I have never noticed that Toby’s barking influences my tinnitus. He has a very deep loud alert bark and it makes you jump. However because it isn’t continuous we can put up with it. A small dog yapping would bother me more along with kids screeching. My ear seems to be more sensitive to higher pitch sounds.
    I associate some of my symptoms with stress and having a dog helps with that so I would have thought in the long term it would be a benefit (maybe not during the puppy stage) Perhaps a 2-3 year old rescue would be better.
     
  4. 5labs

    5labs Registered Users

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    All but one of mine will bark when someone comes to the house, but don't bark otherwise. One of them, I have never heard bark.
    Well done to you for being thorough. 4 years is a long time to make sure you are making the right decision.
     
  5. tomd8

    tomd8 Registered Users

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    Probably more by chance than not but I've now owned 3 Labs, 2 from working stock and one from show stock. The show stock (black female) barely barked. The other 2 (1 black male, 1 yellow female) are/were very noisy.
     
  6. SianMJ

    SianMJ Registered Users

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    Hello, I have a young lab. She does bark when people come to the house and can on occasions bark when excited, which is of course like many dogs as you say. She didn’t bark much really until 8 months. Her bark is very loud and her excited bark is high pitched. She is louder than other dogs I’ve had such as border collie of similar size. A smaller / another dog’s bark could be quieter in volume but pitch may be higher, depends what would be worse/ better for you? Hope that’s helpful in some way.
     
  7. Labsforever

    Labsforever Registered Users

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    Thank all for your replys.

    Sarah@forumHQ - im not looking for a dog who never barks just one who is not yappy or constantly barks. I think an older dog is a good idea.

    I have spoken with a Trainer who has said that labs are a good choice as they tend to be a quiet breed and dont bark all the time.

    He said that you should look for parent's who are quiet dogs as they can learn pick it up from mom so look for a breeder whose dogs are quieter.

    He also said that you then want to teach your pup from day one that excessive barking is not allowed.

    He said there easy to train so a great choice and they dont make any Chewbacca noises like some breeds who are talkative.
     
  8. Ski-Patroller

    Ski-Patroller Cooper, Terminally Cute

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    FWIW I also have Tinitus, but I pretty much ignore it and dogs barking don't make it worse for me. Labs as a breed are not known for barking a lot, and none of ours ever have. They bark if they hear someone at the door, or occasionally at a person or other dog, but not normally and not for long. We have two friends with Sammies, and they BARK A LOT. Our current and previous Labs were model citizens by comparison. That said there are no guarantees about an individual dog.
     
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  9. Deboragh

    Deboragh Registered Users

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    It's more common for people with tinnitus to complain at night when it's quiet and the ringing in their ears is more noticeable...can lead to problems sleeping
     
  10. J.D

    J.D Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    There are huge degrees of tinnitus and people that have it severely notice it all the time. It is also triggered by loud noises that can then set it off for days. This lady is trying to reduce the number of times that might happen by not having a dog at close quarters that barks all the time.
     
  11. Deboragh

    Deboragh Registered Users

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  12. Deboragh

    Deboragh Registered Users

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    I didn't mean to sound unsympathetic.☹️ I studied Audiology in school do I was just sharing some knowledge
     
  13. Ondrea

    Ondrea Registered Users

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    That's a great idea to look at the parents and their barking habits. When I went to pick my new black lab pup up at the breeder it was silent in her house. After talking with her she said she had 9 pet adult labs free roaming the house! But yet I heard 0 barking! This makes sense as to why our new pup isnt very vocal. Our 4 year old black lab doesnt bark either! So my husband hoped we would get a dog that would alert at people coming into the driveway. So instead we just got a driveway alarm hahaha.
    The only time the pup is vocal is in the car. She whines non stop high pitched but the more she rides the better she gets so I'm hoping she will grow out of that.
    I pray you find a dog that fits you. I am very empathetic to your situation as I have 2 young children with hearing loss that both wear hearing aids so we also have to be sensitive to the situations we get into with our kids because loud noises make them uncomfortable.
    Hopefully you could do a foster situation to make sure the dog is the right fit for you. Labs are awesome easily trainable dogs so I really think you will love one![/QUOTE]
     

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