Hogan’s Hope: A Deaf Hero’s Inspirational Quest for Love and Acceptance is the true story of a dog rescued from abuse, written by Connie Bombaci. Born the runt of the litter in a puppy mill and christened Number 10, the tiny Dalmatian pup hardly stood a chance at a normal life. Not only was he born deaf, but he was also quite small. Not permitted indoors, he suffered horrific beatings whilst being caged outdoors with no shelter or warmth. After being rescued and rehomed, Number 10 was renamed after being adopted by a kind and loving family. Now known as Hogan, his life was about to change tenfold because his new family acknowledged his deafness and helped him work through his residual fears, as they learned and taught basic commands in American Sign Language, and turned this scrawny, bruised and beaten canine victim into a happy, healthy survivor.
The moment I saw the premise of Hogan’s story, I had never wanted to read any book so badly before in my life. Connie Bombaci’s story of Hogan – a Dalmatian pup which had withstood all the odds and became a beacon of hope for so many – moved me to tears. Seeing how horrifically an animal could be treated gave me chills, whilst clenching my fists at the same time. I saw Hogan’s rescue from such a horrific place to be a true blessing. Being Deaf, I know the challenges and prejudices that stem from audism and surdophobia, and could not help but rejoice as I experienced Hogan’s transformation from scared victim in a world devoid of trust, to a confident, devoted and loving pet which lived and gave his all for his human and animal friends and family. One of the most emotionally satisfying and enriching books I have ever read, Hogan’s Hope: A Deaf Hero’s Inspirational Quest for Love and Acceptance is a tale which I not only enjoyed, but also recommend to readers aged over 15 years, so that they can see that deafness does not create boundaries in any species – it is how you interact and embrace those who are deaf which makes all the difference in their silent world.