Delivery and Support
Owning a Hearing Assistance Dog is different to owning a pet dog. Most importantly, Hearing Dogs are working dogs. They love to work, it’s what they’re trained to do, but they do need your full commitment to maintain their training throughout their lives.
Hearing Assistance Dogs predominately live inside but are not allowed to sit on beds or couches, as this can increase their perception of their status in the home. As a result they may become lazy and harder to manage, increasing the likelihood of them not working for you.
As Hearing Assistance Dogs have full public access rights, we expect that your Hearing Dog will accompany you everywhere. This will strengthen your bond and keep your dog interested and happy. You must not leave your dog inside your house when you’re not home. And when you’re out your dog must wear it’s Australian Lions Hearing Dog jacket to prove it’s identity.
Our qualified Hearing Assistance Dog trainers will deliver each dog to their recipient and provide support to the new partnership. For your first week together, the Trainer will spend a lot of time with you and your dog; teaching you, helping your dog adjust to its new environment, going to various public areas and personalising any training to suit your home. After the first week, each recipient is allocated a group of volunteers from a local Lions Club, that will visit three times per week for three months, to see how you’re settling in together. Six weeks into your new partnership, the dog’s Trainer will come back, again to ensure that the dog is working well and help to work through any challenges with you.
At the end of the three months, ALHD’s Program Director will visit to conduct an Accreditation Assessment, in which the dog’s response to sounds at home and behaviour in public access situations is tested, ensuring the dog meets required standards. Assuming it does, your dog becomes an Accredited Hearing Assistance Dog and you will be presented with a dog jacket and ID card that reflects their status. Further checks are done every two years, and ALHD are here to support you at any time.