Hearing Dogs for Deaf People
We train dogs to alert deaf people to important and life-saving sounds they would otherwise miss – sounds that many people take for granted like the doorbell, alarm clock and even danger signals like the fire alarm. Being aware of these – thanks to a hearing dog – makes a real difference to deaf people’s lives, and can even save them. But our clever canines do so much more than alert their recipient to sounds.
Deafness can be a very isolating disability. A hearing dog can give a deaf person a newfound sense of independence and confidence now they have a loyal companion and a true friend by their side.
As if this wasn’t enough – hearing dogs have saved countless lives in their important role; fire alarms sounding at the dead of night, alerting them to the shouts of a loved one who is in peril, even saving their deaf partners from potential car thieves!
Dogs are known for their loyalty and love – and we see these valuable traits in a hearing dog every day.
We have matched thousands of our adorable dogs with deaf people since our humble beginnings in 1982. At the moment, we have almost 1,000 working hearing dog partnerships across the UK.
When a hearing dog retires at about the age of 11, their deaf partner is able to reapply for a new dog – and a lot of them keep their former hearing dogs as pets!
Many of our deaf partners are keen to continue life with a hearing dog, but in some cases other types of personalised support may be more suitable, so we will always talk to people about the other ways we can help.
The cost to train and support each hearing dog throughout their lifetime is £40,000 – so we rely heavily on our amazing supporters to help us change lives. It really is all down to people like you, who give up time, effort and money to help us create many life-changing partnerships. But there are still so many deaf people whom we can help.