I posted about a month ago about Bo in equestrian here
brought up an interesting idea that I had never considered, that he might be a splashed white overo Paint and hence could be deaf. Well, that never in a million years would have crossed my mind, but I've been seriously thinking about it and how it would explain so much about his behavior. greenanimal
and I have been trying to get him to react to different noises out of his sight to see whether or not he does anything, but I haven't gotten anything really conclusive until tonight. When I got to his stall he was facing away from me and eating his hay, so I stood at the door and said his name a few times, then I said it louder, then I yelled at him, then I yelled and banged on his stall door...nothing. I suppose he could have just been ignoring me, BUT when he did look up and saw me standing at the door and waving my arms, he was completely taken by surprise and jumped backwards away from me. So I'm now basically 99% sure that he is in fact deaf.
Now, I still think he's a great horse and I have no desire to get rid of him. But I haven't ever dealt with this situation before, so I'm wondering what, if anything, I need to do differently for owning a deaf horse. Obviously he's not going to respond to any vocal cues I might give, so I won't bother with those. I think a lot will rely on us just developing our relationship and him learning to trust me and follow my lead; I've still only had him for about five months.
Has anyone here ever worked with a deaf horse before? Any advice for me and my boy? I'd really appreciate any insights anyone has! =)cross-posted to equestrian