A story that should’ve been heartwarming has turned sour after more details have rolled in.
Sapulpa Times recently reported on a beautiful new hypoallergenic poodle that had been given to a local boy with sensory processing disorders, named Julian. The suprise came after a woman who was looking to sell their poodle named Weasley, decided to forfeit the $1000 asking price and give the dog to Julian and his family.
But Weasley, only a year old, would need training, and a lot of it. Becoming a service dog requires classes that go “above and beyond simple obedience training,” said Nicole Squirrel, Julian’s mom.
Another person named Marjorie Satterfield, owner of a pet training company called Glad Wags had stepped forward and offered to train Weasley at a deeply discounted rate.
It looked as though it was another much-needed piece of the puzzle, but this one turned out to be faulty.
In February of 2018, Satterfield was arrested on 123 complaints of animal cruelty after deputies served a search warrant to her Skiatook residence. What they found was appalling: 106 dogs, seven cats, four chickens and six other birds, according to a story from The Tulsa World on February 16th, 2018.
Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office reportedly said that “every surface of the house was covered by kennels”. Although the animals appeared fed, they did not have water, and there were large amounts of feces, roaches and bed bugs in the environment, leading to unsanitary conditions for the animals.
The revelation was a shock to Squirrel, but for awhile they didn’t know what to do. Satterfield had been allowed to continue training, despite the charges. Given the expense of training a dog, Squirrel felt that Satterfield’s option was the only one they had.
“We thought at first, we’ll protect Weasley by making her come here,” Squirrel said. “We’d never leave Weasley in her care.”
But as time went on, they began to get less comfortable with Satterfield, and began looking into other options. Thankfully, there are a few to choose from, including one in Broken Arrow and another in Tulsa.
But the cost is still a factor. Squirrel doesn’t work so that she can take care of Julian. As such, money for things like training is hard to come by.
They’ve set up a GoFundMe Account at https://www.gofundme.com/help-julian-get-a-service-dog
The total amount donated so far is just $5.00
Even so, that doesn’t mean they’re not grateful to have Weasley.
“He’s changed our lives,” Squirrel said, talking about how Julian had come home crying and upset, and Weasley, already responding to some of his training, came over and leaned on Julian, licking his hand until he calmed down.
The family is hoping that with a little help, Weasley will continue his training and get to a point where he could even accompany Julian to school.