Creating life changing partnerships
Universal Care in Beaconsfield is celebrating its 30th anniversary by supporting 30 local and national charities over 30 weeks from April 4 to October 28. Each charity will receive a cash donation and free use of Universal Care’s conference room to use as
UNIVERSAL Care is hosting a ‘Paws for Coffee’ event from 10am to 4pm, Thursday, August 18 at Universal Care’s office, Chester House, 9 Windsor End, Beaconsfield Bucks HP9 2JJ.
Join us for the Hearing Dog demonstrations on The Green (opposite the office), have the opportunity to meet some of the puppies in training, learn more about the work of this amazing charity and enjoy refreshments served at Chester House
Hearing Dogs for Deaf People is a national charity which trains hearing dogs to alert deaf people to important sounds and danger signals in the home, work place and in public buildings that they would otherwise miss.
Hearing Dogs was launched at the world famous Crufts dog show in 1982 and since then we have created over 2,000 life changing partnerships between deaf people and hearing dogs across the UK.
There are currently over 900 working partnerships in the country.
We train hearing dogs to alert deaf children and adults to important sounds and danger signals such as the alarm clock, door bell, telephone, a baby’s cry and the smoke alarm – providing independence, confidence and valuable companionship. Hearing dogs alert their deaf recipients to sounds by touching them with a paw or nudging their leg with their nose to gain attention.
The recipient then asks the dog ‘what is it?’ using a hand signal and the dog leads the recipient to the source of the sound. For danger signals such as a smoke alarm, the hearing dog will alert the recipient in the same way, but when asked ‘what is it?’ the dog will instead lie down to indicate danger and that the deaf person should evacuate the building.
The breeds we train to become hearing dogs are Labradors, Golden Retrievers, Cocker Spaniels Miniature Poodles and Cockerpoos.
Through many years of practice, we have discovered that these are the best breeds for the job in terms of temperament, trainability and character.
We have our own breeding scheme and also adopt a handful of puppies from reputable breeders.
The training of a hearing dog takes around 18 months, consisting of initial puppy socialisation training with volunteers before moving onto sound work training; usually at one of our two training centres.
Once fully trained the dog is then very carefully matched to an applicant based on a number of criteria such as lifestyle, hobbies, and other needs. The recipient and hearing dog then spend a period of time training together, before qualifying as an official partnership.
Hearing dogs are easily recognisable by their distinctive burgundy jacket and lead slips, which help to signal the recipients otherwise invisible disability, bringing increased peace of mind for the deaf person.
Deafness can be an incredibly isolating and lonely disability, and a hearing dog provides life-changing independence, increased confidence, companionship and a feeling of security.
For further information, please see the website www. hearingdogs.org.uk.