How to apply


The dog you are applying for is a specially selected, highly trained dog that is given free of charge to successful applicants.

Here are some of the main requirements:

  • You are profoundly deaf, or have moderate to severe hearing loss. (This includes individuals with a cochlear implant.)
  • You have a need for a Hearing Dog. This means you want and need to be alerted to the sounds regularly at home and possibly at work. These sounds include alarm clock, doorbell, door knock, phone, smoke alarm, baby monitor, cooker timer.
  • You live alone OR you live with other deaf people OR you live with hearing people who will allow a Hearing Dog to work to sounds every time a sound occurs.
  • Hearing Dogs live inside the home. You/your landlord/your housemates need to be happy with a dog inside your home at all times.
  • You have no other dogs living in your home. (The exception to this is that you already have an elderly pet dog.)
  • You have an ‘escape proof’ fenced area that will allow the dog to have exercise and be able to toilet without supervision. (The fenced area will be relevant to the size of the intended dog.)
  • You genuinely like the close companionship of a dog, and want to develop a working relationship with one.
  • You will be able to physically and financially care for a dog placed with you. You will be able to give the dog regular exercise, grooming, suitable food and shelter, and ensure that the dog receives appropriate veterinary care.
  • You believe you will be able to obtain the support of your employer to have a Hearing Dog at work if you are working.
  • You believe you will obtain the support of your educator if you are studying.
  • You believe you will benefit from enhanced independence, an improved sense of well-being, and security as a result of having a Hearing Dog.

Each Hearing Dog costs around $30,000 to train, however we provide the Hearing Dog free of charge to the successful applicant.

We do have strict guidelines the recipient needs to adhere to regarding the dog’s future performance and behaviour.

If you would like to proceed with an application or find out more information, please email us: info@hearingdogs.org.nz or phone the office: 06 769 5000 and we will send you out an Application Pack.

Applicants are assessed based on the information provided by them in their application form, support forms, general letters of support and from an interview undertaken by a Hearing Dogs staff member at the applicant’s home.

Approved applicants are placed on a waiting list until a suitable dog can be matched with them. This may take up to six months or more.


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