Guide To Hearing Dogs For People Who Are Hearing Impaired

Nearly 9 million people in the UK experience some sort of hearing loss which means approximately one in seven adults of the UK population has a hearing impairment and possible wears a hearing aid.

Learning to live with deafness can be a difficult experience as many people say they lose their sense of security, confidence and independence.

A hearing dog can help to rebuild your communication and specifically, they assist you to alert of important sounds and dangers such as a doorbell, smoke alarm, alarm clock or ringing telephone.

A hearing dog is professionally trained and tested to ensure they have proper temperament, sound reactivity and willingness to work. They’re trained in basic obedience and exposed to real life experiences such as shopping centres; lifts etc. to make sure even through socialising they are trained in sound alerting.

The training involves getting the four-legged friend to recognise particular sounds and then physically warning or leading their handler to the source. Or they can be trained to physically lead away from a sound, as in the case of a fire alarm.

They wear a distinctive burgundy jacket with the logo of the national charity Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.

There are around 1.4 million people who regularly use Hearing aids but over half a million people have a severe hearing loss that could potentially benefit from having a hearing dog.

A hearing dog is a registered Assistance Dog and as such is allowed access to public places under the Equality Act 2010, which has replaced the Disability Discrimination Act.