Hearing Dog Program
The San Francisco SPCA Hearing Dog Program supports over 100 active hearing dog graduate teams throughout the Bay Area, Southern California, Nevada, and Hawaii. The Society provides veterinary support for the life of the service dog and on-going training and behavior consultation.
Developed in 1978, The San Francisco SPCA Hearing Dog Program was designed to train homeless dogs as service animals and place them with deaf or hearing-impaired guardians. In so doing, The San Francisco SPCA Hearing Dog Program has furthered two of its core missions: i) rescuing animals; and ii) providing its rescued animals with a meaningful new role in life with their hearing impaired partners. The SF SPCA Hearing Dog Program has graduated 800+ Hearing Dog Teams. Though the Program currently does not accept applicants, we work cooperatively with a Sonoma County service dog organization to respond to inquiries and assist with replacement dog needs.
On-Going Support Provided By the SF SPCA Hearing Dog Program:
SF SPCA Hearing Dog Program graduates receive the following on-going support at no-cost.
- Dog Training Consultations and Sound Work Refresher Sessions, provided by a professional Hearing Dog Trainer by phone, email- or in-person to address any concerns regarding dog behavior or revisiting service dog command and response work.
- Reimbursement of veterinary expenses for annual wellness examinations and vaccines. Graduates may utilize the SF SPCA Veterinary Hospital or a veterinarian of their choice and receive reimbursement from The SF SPCA.
- Replacement of service dog leashes, collars, harnesses and vests.
- Replacement service dog Identification badges
- Administrative support to field phone calls and questions from graduates and people seeking referral to a service dog organization.
A department of the SF SPCA, the SF SPCA Hearing Dog Program is independent of any other local or national service dog programs. Contributions to the SF SPCA Hearing Dog Program provide on-going support and supplies for graduate teams and if the Program is expanded further in the future, would provide for that development as well.