Currently, Dogs for the Deaf places Autism Assistance Dogs with clients that live in Oregon, Idaho, California, and Washington - within a 12-hour drive of our national headquarters in Central Point, Oregon. As this program grows we will be expanding eastward with our placements until we serve the entire United States.
There can be no other dogs in the household with a Hearing Dog, Autism Assistance Dog or Program Assistance Dog, with the possible exception of a retired Hearing Dog, Autism Assistance Dog or Program Assistance Dog. If you have animals other than cats and are not willing to re-home them, your application may be denied due to the difficulties of having a professionally trained dog work around those types of distractions.
We typically require a fenced area attached to the home.
It is crucial to have full cooperation and support of all household members for a successful working team to develop.
Those accepted to receive a dog will be required to pay a $500.00 refundable Good Faith Deposit. Once the team has been together for one year, the deposit is refunded.
The cost of feeding and caring for one of our professionally trained dogs could be over $750.00 per year. This includes but is not limited to food, toys, vet care, etc. This does not include any unforseen illness or injury. The client is financially responsible for the dog's care once the dog is placed with the person.
For HEARING DOGS: A client must be willing and able to physically, mentally, and emotionally care for the dog without assistance.
For AUTISM ASSISTANCE DOGS: Please note that our Hearing Dog training program is separate from our Autism Program. Generally, to qualify for our Autism Program, the child on the autism spectrum cannot be diagnosed with any other disabilities. To provide the best support for our clients, our dogs are trained for one specific skillset and not, for example, dually trained as Hearing Dogs. Please call for more information and clarification.
The Hearing Dog, Autism Assistance Dog or Program Assistance Dog is a trained working animal, not a pet. The entire training program is based on rewarding or playing with the dog every time they work. Consistent practice, patience, and praise are necessary for the dog to succeed.
Please remember that our dogs are not trained to be guard dogs. They are friendly, stable dogs that help people with different challenges and provide companionship only.