Abused And Scarred Husky Helps At-Risk Children Through Court Trials


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Going through a court trial as a child can be terrifying. When alleged abuse occurs, kids are often dragged through lengthy court and legal processes, unsure of what their future holds.

They may face separation from their families or betrayal of a loved one. It’s a lot to handle for anyone, but especially for children.


In Southern California, a unique program has been put in place to support those kids going through court trials and they do it with the help of dogs, like Patriot.

Patriot the husky didn’t have an easy start to life. According to People, the little pup found himself at the Orange County SPCA back in 2012. He was only 4 months old at that time and he’d already suffered through so much abuse.


At less than 6 months old, Patriot was permanently scarred from a wire that had been wrapped around his snout. Beyond that, he was missing part of his tongue from the abuse he suffered as a newborn.

Despite his rough start in life and the abuse he suffered at the hands of humans, Patriot overcame his difficulties and turned out to be a loving and compassionate pooch. In fact, he ended up catching the eye of Kevin Marlin.

Marlin recognized how great dogs could be in therapy situations involving children and he started a program to have dogs support kids going through court trials.


The program, called the PANDA Victim Assistance Program, is run as part of the Orange County Animal Allies.

Fourteen dogs participate in the program, including Kevin’s very own Patriot.


According to People, Kevin explained:

“The kids relate to Patriot and vice versa. I remember one young girl who was just beginning the process of a trial, and she was visibly uncomfortable until Patriot came over and nudged her with his nose. The girl grabbed hold of him and cried. They made a strong connection, and the girl was able to move on with her story. She didn’t want to leave Patriot that day when she was finished.”

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