Dear Shannon,

My Yorkie is losing her hearing and her eyesight. She barks (and barks and barks…for about 15-20 minutes at a time) at any loud noise or sudden movement. I’ve tried to redirect her attention, show her there is nothing to bark at, tell her to stop barking, beg her to stop barking… I just don’t know what else to do… please help before I lose my mind.

Dear Yorkie Mom,

Losing hearing and sight is scary for anyone and dogs are no different. Your letter does not name any specific times that she barks but if you can identify any “regular” triggers it can helpful. If you can predict when she will be startled, you can either prevent her from hearing it (move her to another room, distract her, etc.) or you may be able to prevent it from happening (if it is sound that you make). In your letter, you also did not mention how old your Yorkie is. If she is losing her hearing and sight, I am assuming she is getting older. If this is the case, you should also have her examined by a veterinarian to rule out any possible cognitive issues like dementia.

Good luck with your girl and I hope this helps!

Shannon

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