Service dog Quill helps hearing-impaired MLA Heather Forsyth

Wildrose MLA Heather Forsyth brought her new service dog with her into the Alberta legislature for the first time on Monday.
Wildrose MLA Heather Forsyth walks with her new service dog Quill at the Alberta legislature on Monday. Forsyth, who is hearing impaired, got Quill in June to alert her about doorbells, cell phones and fire alarms. (CBC)

Wildrose MLA Heather Forsyth brought her new service dog with her into the Alberta legislature on Monday.

Forsyth has a hearing loss and Quill alerts her to eight different sounds including her doorbell, cell phone and alarm clock.

“He will come up to me and put his paws and go, “pat, pat” and then directly take me to the sound,” she said.

“He spins when there is a fire alarm to let me know this is really serious.”

Quill must get used to the noises of her place of work, including the legislature, even though he was initially bothered by the thumping of the desks, Forsyth said.

“I was handing him treats and saying, sit, good and then he settled right down,” she said.

Forsyth says her hearing problems really started bothering her over the past year.

Quill is believed to be the first service dog to be brought into a legislative assembly in Canada.

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