Discover the benefits and peace of mind a four-legged companion can offer.
Throughout history, we have long depended on domesticated dogs for guarding, hunting, and companionship. In fact, researchers estimate that our long-lasting bond with these adorable four-legged creatures may have started as early as 32,000 years ago. Their innate loyalty, keen senses, and sophisticated social brain make dogs ideal pets, and also excellent service animals for people with hearing loss, often being referred to as hearing dogs.
What is a hearing dog?
While they can be purebreds, hearing dogs are typically small-medium mixed breeds that organizations, such as Dogs for Better Lives and Paws with a Cause, rescue from animal shelters. Experienced instructors help each rescue dog complete a specialized sound training program that prepares them to become a helpful companion for a person with hearing loss. Hearing dogs usually wear a leash and/or a vest to signify their special training.
How do hearing dogs help?
Hearing dogs can accompany you in most of your daily activities and environments where hearing may be difficult. Your companion will be there for you at home and can even come along to most public places, including restaurants, airplanes, and shops. Federal law also permits service animals in housing where pets are typically not allowed. They can support your hearing by:
- Physically alerting you to sounds around your home or in public, such as a smoke alarm, siren, or a child’s cry
- Leading you to the source of the sound
- Responding to American Sign Language (ASL) with additional training, if needed
How can a hearing dog change your life?
A service dog for hearing loss can help you feel more:
- Safe and secure at home and in public
- Confident in your response to sounds in your environment
- Aware when participating in activities and social settings
- Physically active from regular walks and excursions
- Happiness and joy with a loyal companion by your side
Watch this success story video on how a hearing dog can make a difference.
And remember – while you’re enjoying the many benefits of a service dog for hearing loss, you’re also helping to enrich Fido’s life too. Providing a loving home and a meaningful purpose makes for one happy pup.
If you’re not sure whether a hearing dog is right for you, start slow. Consider allowing your household pet to introduce you to the benefits of dogs for assistance before committing to a service animal for hearing loss.
For more information about service dogs for hearing loss, use this source to locate an organization near you to inquire about criteria, cost, and special programs available.
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