Zoomba was more than just a dog. This was the dog that changed my life. Because of her deafness, Zoomba reacted differently than other dogs. She didn’t understand vocal warnings, and this affected her understanding of human and canine body language. I took her to training classes, but her differences were significant…..and I ended up being taught to use punishment and interruption techniques that were wrong for a deaf dog. As a result, I began researching canine behave and deaf dogs…and found little. Thus became a new career for me after Jim died. When Jim died, I didn’t know how I could go back to the collaborative research we did together for 30 years….and Miss Zoomba provided me a new opportunity. Because of Zoomba, I am now teaching and conducting research on canine behavior. Because of Zoomba, I am a different person….and I cannot be more grateful that a silly little deaf Australian Shepherd came into my life.
God Bless you, Zoomba. I miss you so very, very much. I walk by and see your empty vest hanging by the door, and your leash waiting for you to talk a walk. I had to put your dish in the cupboard where I couldn’t see it- it reminded me too much of you. I miss your presence on my bed or chair at night….and the other dogs are looking for you. I know you are out of pain and free, running with Seamus and Lilly and Merry Puppy and Butchie on the Rainbow Bridge.
Zoomba Luna Dougan. December 29, 2009-June 21, 2019.