Deaf dog to receive sign language training

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GOLDEN, Colo. -- Red is a 2-year-old Australian cattle dog mix with a sweet personality who was adopted and later returned. It turns out the dog is deaf, but will learn sign language training thanks to a grant.

Red was immediately adopted after arriving at the Foothills Animal Shelter but returned after the family found out quickly about her disability.

"After a couple of days, they realized whenever she was sleeping she wouldn't wake up when they would clap their hands or make any noises," Jessi Burns of Foothills Animal Shelter said.

Burns said most people don't want special-needs dogs.

"Special-need dogs take a lot of extra effort," Burns said.

The Wags and Menace Make a Difference Foundation of Denver is stepping up to help Red learn sign language.

"The Wags and Menace Make a Difference Foundation will facilitate a $1,000 grant for Red to go to sign language," said Cindy Lee, president of Wags and Menace Make a Difference Foundation.

Turns out, dogs respond well to sign language training. For years, hunting dogs have been trained and using it in the field.

"[Red] would not have had a chance without the grant at all," Lee said

Red might not hear, but she has good eyes and a good nose, and most important, a great little heart.

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