Dogs Sense of Hearing

Dog Whistle

Although a dogs sense of hearing works in a similar way to a humans, there are several important differences that show how a dog's hearing has evolved.

A dog is born deaf and cannot hear until it is around 21 days old. Pups have problems understanding from which direction sounds come from until they are reasonably mature. Dogs are sensitive to extremely loud noises and also to high pitched sound.

Dogs can hear at four times the distance humans can and their ears are better configured to gather more of the available sound waves. Dog's ears have 15 different muscles so they are able to move their ears in all directions. They can also move their ears independently and this enables them to process even more information.

Dogs can hear low notes just as we do but their hearing is more intense. They can hear much higher frequencies and sounds than us humans.

In the wild, the dogs sense of hearing would help him to pick up and track the sounds of small creatures such as mice and rabbits that make high-pitched squeaks. Dogs also have the ability to shut off their inner ear in order to filter out any distracting sounds, helping them to concentrate on the important tasks, in this case food.

Dogs will often think twice before going out in the rain. This is not because they don't want to get wet, but because the sound of the rain is amplified and causes pain to their sensitive ears.

The next time you begin shouting at your dog, remember a noise that we can only just hear at 5 metres a dog can hear at 23 metres so you don't need to raise your voice to make yourself heard.

Ear infections are common in dogs, especially in breeds with with long hanging ears.

Check your dog's ears for any excess wax, dirt or redness. If there is an unpleasant smell coming from your dog's ears, there is likely to be a problem.

Your dog's sense of hearing is as important to him as your hearing is to you, so examine and clean your dog's ears regularly, as any untreated ear conditions can soon develop and cause stress, pain and even deafness to your dog.

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