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Experiments in Canine Audiology: Teddy and Buddy’s Hearing Test Secret Mission

Hello, furry friends and human pals! It’s your favourite pawdiologist, Teddy. Today, I’ve got quite the tail to tell you about – it involves my mischievous brother, Buddy, and our attempt at giving our dear mummy, Sarah, a Full Diagnostic Hearing test!

It all started on a sunny afternoon at the clinic. Mummy Sarah was busy bustling about, attending to the needs of our lovely clients and ensuring the clinic runs as smooth as a bone, when Buddy and I decided to do an experiment. We knew mummy was always talking about the importance of hearing, and I reckon we’ve gained enough audiology knowledge from lying on our backs with our legs in the air whilst there’s been training going on, so we thought it would be good fun to conduct our very own hearing test on her.

First up was the pure tone audiometry test. With my keen sense of hearing, I can pick up even the faintest of sounds and the different tones. I can hear stuff you can’t, especially the word “cheeeese” said in a very quiet high-pitched voice in the kitchen when I am three floors up and sprawled out (upside down, obviously) on a bed. So, while mummy Sarah was engrossed in her paperwork, I stealthily tiptoed behind her and let out a big deep woof. Buddy, being the furry rascal he is, decided to join in the fun and added his bark to the mix, a high squeaky woof. Who would she hear first and give a treat to? Mummy Sarah turned around with a puzzled look, but I could tell she didn’t quite catch our little experiment as no treats came out of the drawer. I wrote on my notes that she failed this test.

Next, we moved on to speech audiometry. This was a bit trickier, as we had to test mummy’s ability to understand speech at different volumes. I tried whispering sweet slobbers into her ear as she bent to put the water bowl down, while Buddy attempted to serenade her with his rendition of “Who Let the Dogs Out?”.  She didn’t react and simply walked back to her office. Another cross on my checklist. She’s not doing very well at this.

We then tested her hearing in noise. Buddy was barking up a storm, and I asked for a bone – surely, she would hear me over all that racket! Unfortunately, mummy didn’t react, so clearly she can’t hear over noise! We have to therefore get rid of the noise. I simply can’t have that as I love bones. I wrote on my notes “Rehome Buddy”. Mummy has failed this test too.

Buddy and I decided to take matters into our own paws and delve deeper into the mystery of her hearing. We had heard about something called Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) whilst lying under a table in the clinic at lunchtime. APD is a condition where the brain struggles to process sounds. Maybe that’s the issue?

We devised a cunning plan to put mummy Sarah’s auditory processing to the test. We decided to ask for our dinner three hours earlier than usual and see if she could hear and respond accordingly. We even did our biggest pleading eyes. I mean, who can resist THAT?

To our surprise, mummy just looked at us – but didn’t give us our dinner early! Maybe she can hear, but her funny human brain can’t properly process the information her ears are sending to it?

That’s when we made a decision. Although our diagnostic methods are approved by the Canine School of Pawdiology, we knew mummy Sarah needed to see N’Gadie, the lovely audiologist who not only conducts (human approved) Full Diagnostic Hearing Assessments, but specialises in APD assessments.

Buddy and I are going to go and sit and howl in N’Gadie’s room until mummy comes in (assuming she hears us) and then we’ll shut the door. We’re confident that with N’Gadie’s expertise and guidance, mummy Sarah will soon be hearing us loud and clear – just like she used to!

*edit from Sarah: I can hear them perfectly well, daft pair.

If you think you need to get a Full Diagnostic Assessment or APD Assessment, then book up by pressing the button below with your paw.

Until next time, keep those ears perked and tails wagging!

Woofs and wags,