Coming up next month in my column in NZ Dog World and on this blog will be information on Hearing Dogs in New Zealand. However, I was in Australia last week on business and picked up some useful information about Lions Hearing Dogs in that country.
98% of the hearing dogs in Australia are ex-shelter dogs. As their name suggests, these dogs alert a hearing impaired owner to important sounds like the fire alarm. It takes approximately $30,000 to train a single hearing dog.
Access to public places for these assistance dogs is guaranteed by law with penalties of up to $50,000 can be applied if someone refuses access to a hearing dog and its owner.
The organisation has trained over 500 dogs since 1982 and has a very useful website.