FDG Hearing Dogs are custom-trained to assist people who are deaf or hard of hearing by physically alerting their partner to common sounds such as a smoke alarm, doorbell, alarm clock, telephone ring or child’s cry.

A Hearing Dog nudges or paws its partner alerting them to a sound and then leads them to its source. Hearing Dogs can also be taught to respond to American Sign Language for people who are non-verbal.

In addition to performing tasks related to a hearing loss, a PAWS Dog can also be trained to assist with tasks related to a seizure disorder or physical disability.

To be eligible for a FDG Hearing Dog, an individual must:
  • Be 18 years or older
  • Have a minimum of 30% bilateral hearing loss
  • If the dog is also trained for a physical disability, an individual must have a physical disability, debilitating chronic illness or neurological disorder affecting one or more limbs
  • Be physically and cognitively capable of participating in the training process, up to one hour a day
  • Be able to independently command and handle their Assistance Dog
  • Be able to meet the emotional, physical and financial needs of the Assistance Dog
  • Be in a stable home environment
  • Actively improve their quality of life and pursue independence with their Assistance Dog
  • Have no other dog in the home (can have other animals)
  • Live in an area serviced by a FDG Trainer (determined upon application)
If the applicant is younger than PAWS’ minimum age, visit www.assistancedogsinternational.org for a list of other ADI programs that may train for younger children.