I’m sure that if you have a youngster (or any family member or good friend) with a chronic, and/or a difficult clinical problem or behavior problem that can not be easily attended to or dealt with, you could become quite desperate for assistance–determined to obtain any support that you heard good things about. I completely sympathize with parents who are bringing up a child with something so difficult; my heart goes out to them. Unfortunately, some individuals see them as potential targets for solution canine scams.
$ 20,000 Lost to Fraudsters
Several individuals sent me an article about a single mom in Wisconsin who was fooled right into raising greater than $20,000 for a dog she assumed would assist her child’s aberrant actions. Her 10-year-old nonverbal son has autism, as well as has fits of aggravation that make him bang his head or become harmful to himself or others. The mom, and also her child’s social worker, had heard that a solution of dogs that could assist some children with autism, and they also began investigating companies that supply and educate service dogs. Eventually, the mother learnt more about a company in Virginia, called Service Dogs by Warren Retrievers (SDWR), whose representatives guaranteed that they not just educate the pets, they bring the dog to your house and also show the dog and client how to work together. That appeared excellent to the mama, who said that travel with her boy is almost impossible.
The company also made it very easy for family and friends members to assist a household seeking a service dog in satisfying the high cost of their dogs and also related services: SDWR provided an online fundraising page to which all donations could be sent, and also indicated that when the complete amount due was received, a service dog would be on it’s way.
Money Delivered–Dog Gone
However after lots of months of fundraising and lots of neighborhood support, when the target quantity–some $20,000–was achieved, SDWR sent only an e-mail, which mentioned that the family members were currently on the “wait list” to get a service dog. Not long after, emails sent out to SDWR began bouncing and its telephone number was no longer viable. Then the family learned the organization had declared bankruptcy. The $20,000 was gone.
This family had not been the only one to be scammed by SDWR. It became known that this group had actually gotten money from a number of various other households who also never received a dog. The families began a Facebook page in order to connect with each other and also share details about SDWR that could assist any one of them in getting even partial reimbursement through the bankruptcy court. In addition, other households stated that they did receive dogs from the company who were not just inexperienced, but they were also unhealthy.
Recognizing and Preventing Service Dog Rip-offs
Here is the important thing–individuals behind this company aren’t the only companies scamming families that are determined to get a service dog. This occurs frequently. There are numerous deceitful people who are selling unhealthy and/or untrained (or badly educated) dogs and also representing them as service dogs.
Please remember to ALWAYS do your homework and due diligence before sending money to any company claiming to have and/or train service dogs. Go on the internet and research, research and research some more!