The speaker at our April meeting was Bernard Rodgers from the charity Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. Bernard was accompanied by his wife, Diana, and hearing dog Otis.
Hearing dogs are taught to respond to important everyday sounds and danger signals in the home, work place, and public buildings. Using their paws or their nose, they will first alert the deaf person to the sound and then lead them to it, or lie down in the case of danger.
Bernard explained how puppies are trained to become hearing dogs, and what is involved in the partnership between a deaf person and their hearing dog. He stressed the benefits that hearing dogs can bring to deaf people in terms of companionship and increased independence and security.
More information about Hearing Dogs for Deaf People can be found on their website here.