A dog named Connor had been deemed unadoptable by another rescue center when he arrived at the Teller County Regional Animal Shelter (TCRAS) in Colorado earlier this year.
TCRAS director Nancy Adams tells The Dodo that Connor has a condition known as "Cerebellar Hypoplasia," meaning that his cerebellum never fully developed. He was thought to be far too rambunctious to find a home - almost like a "permanent puppy," with all the behavioral problems that come with one. And, as local news station KUSA reports, that was leading potential adopters to shy away from him.
But it turns out, Connor really wasn't so incorrigible after all. He just needed someone to realize that he doesn't experience things the same way that most dogs do.
Volunteers at TCRAS, a no-kill facility, specialize in teaching rescue dogs with behavioral problems the basics to improve their chances of adoption, though Connor proved an especially difficult pupil. After six months of instruction, he showed virtually no signs of improvement. The dog just seemed unreachable, as if he was living in a world cut-off from everyone else. And in a way, he was.
"We worked with him, but couldn't decide if he was stubborn or why he just didn't seem to get it. He just never reacted or would do what they wanted," says Adams. "Finally, one of the techs here said ‘I think he's deaf!' So we took him to the veterinarian's office and were told that he is profoundly deaf."