How To Train A Blind Dog
If your dog is blind, you can still train him to do just about anything than an unimpaired dog can do. Because your dog is blind, he will rely more heavily on your verbal cues and verbal praise, and you will need to incorporate this into your training regimen. The first thing you need to do is train your dog to respond to you and pay attention to you on command. Once you have achieved this, you can teach your dog just about anything.
Come up with a verbal cue that tells your dog to pay attention. Some people choose to use the dog’s name, for example. When you call your dog’s name, you want your dog to look at you and come to you. Many people who train dogs use clickers to reinforce their training, and clickers are often a good choice for blind dogs.
Basically, you want to use the clicker as a reward for your dog. This sound lets the dog know that he did what you wanted. The first thing that you want to do is “load” the clicker, and you do this by simply clicking the clicker and giving your dog a treat. Do this about 10 times a couple of times a day. In a day or two, your dog should look at you when you click the clicker.
Now, when you are teaching your dog to do something, use the clicker to tell the dog that he has done what you wanted him to do. For example, when teaching the dog to sit, click the clicker (and follow it with a treat) when your dog sits. Eventually, as your dog learns the behavior, you can reduce the number of treats you use. Then, eventually, you will just use the clicker as the reward.
Training a blind dog is not very hard. You just want to make sure that you stick with your verbal cues and that you give a lot of verbal praise and treats. You also want to train your dog, at least at first, in an area that he is familiar with so that he is comfortable and will not run into things.