Why Get a Hearing Dog
Hearing dogs for the deaf alert deaf people to sounds, both inside and outside of the home. Some deaf people also choose to get hearing dogs for safety reasons.
Where to Get a Hearing Dog
Where can you get one? There are several hearing dog organizations in the United States, such as Dogs for the Deaf. A web search turned up the following web directories:
- Wolfpacks Service Dog Directory - Check the type of dogs trained to find those providing hearing dogs. Site is kept up to date.
In the UK, a well-known organization is Hearing Dogs for the Deaf.
Books About Hearing DogsThere are books about training hearing dogs, and books for children and teens about hearing dogs. Lend Me an Ear: The Temperament, Selection and Training of the Hearing Ear Dog, is a book by a hearing dog trainer, Martha Hoffman.
What Kind of Dog to Get
Support for Hearing Dog OwnersYahoo Groups has the group Assistance-Dogs which includes hearing dogs. A smaller group that focuses solely on hearing dogs, is hearingdogteams, which discusses training and owning hearing dogs.
Hearing Dogs on TelevisionThe television show Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye, which aired October 2002 to May 2005, had the main deaf character, Sue Thomas, with a hearing dog, Levi.
Hearing Dogs are Still Dogs
Of course, having a hearing dog means that you have take care of it just like any other dog. Not everyone is comfortable with the idea of walking and scooping up after a dog. I don't want to walk and scoop up after a dog, but I could change my mind someday because of the benefits of having a hearing dog.
An About visitor asked about adopting a dog that failed to pass hearing dog training. That is indeed possible. For example, Dogs for the Deaf adopts out these training "failures" as Career Change Dogs.