Paul Ogden, a deaf college professor, and his wife Anne, who is hard of hearing, discovered their "ears" in Chelsea, a beautiful, gentle Belgian sheepdog. Instead of herding sheep, like her ancestors, Chelsea works as a signal dog, helping the Ogdens live as normally as possible. She "tells" them if someone is at the door or on the phone, and wakes them when the alarm has gone off. She even reacts to the sound of strange voices and unusual noises.
"A warm and witty book . . . Chelsea's tale is a delightful read. . . . That feeling of love and devotion -- the Ogdens for Chelsea and she for them -- comes through on every page of Paul Ogden's book." -- The Baltimore Sun
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In this lively memoir, Ogden (Communicative Disorders/California State Univ. at Fresno; co-author, The Silent Garden, 1982) eloquently explains what it's like for a deaf person to function in a hearing world--and how Chelsea, a well-trained ``signal dog,'' adds dimension to his life. When Ogden and his wife, Anne, who is also deaf, lose their first dog, Lox, they lost not just a companion, but a connection to the hearing world. (They had taught Lox, among other things, to indicate when someone was at the door or on the telephone.) So they set about adopting a signal dog from Canine Companions for Independence, a group that matches dogs with deaf and handicapped individuals and puts both humans and canines through a very rigorous training program. The dogs have been previously taught to respond to over 80 signals, and when their new owners arrive, it is they who need the training. Ogden spends half of a two-week training period literally leashed to his new dog, a Belgian sheepdog named Chelsea, so they can bond together and learn to read each other's signals (no wonder human graduates refer to the training as boot camp). Throughout, Ogden conveys what it's like to be deaf--even the little things, such as how a hearing-impaired person worships in church or manages to lip-read someone with a mustache. ``Deafness,'' he contends, is ``not a handicap but a serious inconvenience.'' Candid and appealing--both as a treatise on deafness and signal dogs, and for its human-animal sentiments. (Twenty b&w photographs--not seen.) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From School Library Journal:
YA-- A detailed, entertaining, and educational look at the training of man and beast to form the working partnership that enables a qualified dog to provide the independence sought by the disabled. While the emphasis is on a single dog, Chelsea, and her work with her deaf master, other humans with different physical handicaps and their experiences are also related. Ogden makes it clear that these are working animals, always on duty. He relates both the problems that Chelsea helped him to overcome and some of her funnier bad habits. Although the chapters are long, Chelsea is a readable and enjoyable account.
- Claudia Moore, W.T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA-
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Fawcett, 1993. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110449222004
Book Description Fawcett, 1993. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0449222004