Resource Guide: HEARING EAR DOGS

Last Updated; September 13, 2017

A Hearing Ear Dog compensates for the missing sense of hearing much as a seeing eye dog does for blind people.  The dog is trained to recognize and alert his/her owner to vital sounds, such as the alarm clock, doorbell or door knock, telephone, smoke detector or a crying baby.  The dog also provides a sense of security and independence for the deaf or hard of hearing person.

Hearing Ear Dogs or Hearing Dogs are accepted in Maine with the same rights as Seeing Eye Dogs with access to transportation, stores, restaurants or any public building.

Canine Companions for Independence

Miller Family Campus
286 Middle Island Road
Medford, NY 11763
(631) 561-0200 (V/TTY)
1-800-572-BARK (2275) (V)
(631) 561-0230 (FAX)
Website: Canine Companions for Independence

Dogs for the Deaf, Inc.

10175 Wheeler Road
Central Point, OR 97502
(541) 826-9220 (V/TTY)
(541) 826-6696 (FAX)

Dogs for the Deaf, Inc. rescues and professionally trains dogs to help people and enhance lives, maintaining a lifelong commitment to all dogs we rescue and all people we serve. These dogs are placed throughout the U.S. and Canada at no cost to the recipient.

Great Plains Assistance Dogs

920 Short Street
P.O. Box 513
Jud, ND 58454
(701) 685-2242 (V)
(701) 685-2290 (FAX)
Website: Great Plains Assistance Dogs

National Education for Assistance Dog Services, Inc. (NEADS)/Dogs for Deaf & Disabled Americans

P.O. Box 213
West Boylston, MA 01583
(978) 422-9064 (V/TTY)
(978) 422-3255 (FAX)
Website: National Education for Assistance Dog Services, Inc. (NEADS)/Dogs for Deaf & Disabled Americans

NEADS (National Education for Assistance Dog Services) (also known as Dogs for Deaf and Disabled Americans), is a non-profit organization that was established in 1976 to provide canine assistance for people who are deaf or have a physical disability. These assistance dogs become an extension of their handlers and bring freedom, physical autonomy and relief from social isolation to their human partners. NEADS offers a wide spectrum of assistance dog services, including: hearing dogs for people who are deaf or have hearing loss; service dogs for people with physical disabilities; dogs for people who require stability and help with balance; canines for combat veterans; dogs for children with a physical disability; dogs for the classroom, therapy and ministry; and dogs for children with autism. NEADS is accredited by Assistance Dog International, the internationally recognized governing body that establishes industry standards and practices.

Wizard Service Dogs

188 Scribner Hill Road
Otisfield, ME 04270
Contact Marie Gagnon
(207) 539-9188 (V)

Wizard Service Dogs offers both mobility and hearing dogs to clients in Northern New England, including Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. The average dog is in basic obedience and public access training for two to three months. If this goes well we then move on to the service task training. This phase lasts six or more months depending on the animal and the tasks to be trained. Our dogs are mainly rescued pups, either from local shelters or individuals who are unable to keep their pets. It is our goal to rehabilitate these dogs and give them a job and structure to make their sometimes unruly energy useful. Most dogs come into the program somewhere between 6 and 18 months of age and are ready for placement around 2 to 3 years old.

The cost varies slightly from dog to dog but the average is $5,000. Individuals applying for a dog must demonstrate the willingness, means and ability to maintain the dog's health, welfare and training. Wizard Service Dogs is also available to help owners train suitable pets to become service dogs. Many pups that make great family members are not suitable as full public access service dogs. If you are currently looking for a pup it is STRONGLY recommended that you involve either Wizard Service Dogs in your search or another qualified canine professional.