Couple ‘Mock’ Disabled Woman At Disneyland After Trying To ‘Entertain Their Kids With Her Service Dog’

Joshua RogersJoshua Rogers in News, World
Published 10.05.19
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A couple has come under fire for appearing to mock a disabled woman at Disneyland after trying to entertain their kids with her service dog.

I recently went to Disneyland Paris and let me tell you, it might have been the best day of my life.

Everyone was just having a great time, enjoying the rides and characters. Man, what a utopia that place is.

But despite my belief that it is indeed the happiest place on Earth, it seems it’s still not immune from drama and confrontation.

A video has recently surfaced in which a couple appear to approach a disabled woman and her service animal in an attempt to use the animal to entertain their children.

The incident took place at Disney California Adventure Park, when the woman states she was having a rest in her wheelchair with her service dog, Sulley, by her side.

The viral video was originally posted on Sulley the Service Dog’s Facebook page, where the disabled woman can be heard asking the couple to keep their distance after asking them to leave her alone several times.

The man can be seen laughing and waving at the camera while his partner holds up a phone of her own and begins filming the disabled woman.

As the woman asks her to ‘back up please,’ she points to her wheelchair and tells her, ‘that’s the reason you’re actually in that seat’.

*EDIT TO ADD: This page does NOT tolerate bigotry and racism! I’m working on deleting comments referring to the other party’s implied race or origin. That is NOT what this post is about. There have been plenty of similar occurrences by White American adults. This just happened to be the one I caught on film* People have service dogs for all kinds of disabilities. These amazing dogs have spent roughly 2 years of training to guide the blind, sense oncoming seizures and other medical crisis, aid their person out of a dissociative state, alert to sounds their person can’t hear, and so much much more. They are with their person as a much needed and loved medical tool and it can be very frustrating when the public doesn’t respect that. As was the case here….We were sitting with friends near a bathroom in Disney California Adventure taking a much needed break. I wasn’t feeling great to start with. Sulley was tucked alongside my wheelchair. I had noticed this man bringing his child continuously closer to “look at the doggie” and did my best to stave off my anxiety over it. After a few minutes I called Sulley to the other side of my chair in hopes making him less visible would give this man the hint that he was making me very uncomfortable. Instead he simply did his best to maneuver his child into view. He began making kissy noises and other sounds in attempt to gain my service dog’s attention. This is when I couldn’t stay silent anymore. Deliberately distracting a service dog is DANGEROUS. It can cause them to miss vital cues their handler gives for them to alert to their medical conditions. I looked over and politely said “sir, could you please leave us alone? You’re making me really uncomfortable.” He was not pleased. Some choice words were said about how he’s only looking at the dog and I should “get over it.” I again addressed him with “you’re making me uncomfortable and you’re distracting my service dog from his job. Please leave us alone.” His temper grew to the point his poor child ended up crying, which I noted to him. His wife then comes upon the scene, yells at me and begins filming. I told them to leave or I would have security called. After calling for someone to please call security, I took out my own phone to film for safety. Sadly I’ve had people escalate to becoming physical over this in the past. Yes, physical, as in have been physically assaulted over asking to be left alone.I don’t understand how we’ve reached a point where we can’t respect someone who politely says that you’re making them uncomfortable and to just move on. I assure you, your child will be far happier to meet Pluto and Goofy than to merely hawk at my service dog that’s too busy and too well trained to pay any mind to them.Edit to add: WOW I didn’t expect this to blow up like it has! I appreciate all the support and I hope this spreads a little awareness to just leave handlers and their dogs alone or at least respect people’s wishes in general if they find courage to speak up and say something you do is troubling to them. So I messed up the subtitles a bit. I have some auditory issues and their accents made it difficult for me to decipher. Apparently the unknown comment was calling me fat (I’m 5’7 and about 160lbs) and it was famous “on twitter” not “in two years.” Whoops! 😂 sorry about that everyone, I tried!

Posted by Sulley the Service Dog on Thursday, December 27, 2018

The woman wrote in the video’s caption:

“We were sitting with friends near a bathroom in Disney California Adventure taking a much needed break. I wasn’t feeling great to start with. Sulley was tucked alongside my wheelchair. I had noticed this man bringing his child continuously closer to “look at the doggie” and did my best to stave off my anxiety over it. After a few minutes I called Sulley to the other side of my chair in hopes making him less visible would give this man the hint that he was making me very uncomfortable. Instead he simply did his best to maneuver his child into view. He began making kissy noises and other sounds in attempt to gain my service dog’s attention. This is when I couldn’t stay silent anymore. Deliberately distracting a service dog is DANGEROUS. It can cause them to miss vital cues their handler gives for them to alert to their medical conditions. I looked over and politely said “sir, could you please leave us alone? You’re making me really uncomfortable.” 

He was not pleased. Some choice words were said about how he’s only looking at the dog and I should “get over it.” I again addressed him with “you’re making me uncomfortable and you’re distracting my service dog from his job. Please leave us alone.” His temper grew to the point his poor child ended up crying, which I noted to him. His wife then comes upon the scene, yells at me and begins filming. I told them to leave or I would have security called. After calling for someone to please call security, I took out my own phone to film for safety. Sadly I’ve had people escalate to becoming physical over this in the past. Yes, physical, as in have been physically assaulted over asking to be left alone.”

She continues:

‘I don’t understand how we’ve reached a point where we can’t respect someone who politely says that you’re making them uncomfortable and to just move on. I assure you, your child will be far happier to meet Pluto and Goofy than to merely hawk at my service dog that’s too busy and too well trained to pay any mind to them.’

Most people in the comments were in support of the disabled woman:

I guess it’s difficult to know how to approach a service dog if you aren’t usually around them and your child is obviously infatuated with it.

I imagine some disabled people are fine with the attention, but if they’re not, and they’re asking you to stop, you should really just move along and avoid making them uncomfortable.

Come on, people. Love not war.

Images via Facebook/Disney

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