Former Gloucester soldier ‘evicted and forced to sleep in his car’
Former Gloucester soldier Steven Bateman has been kicked out of his home for keeping a dog which helps him cope with his battlefield trauma.
Steven Bateman suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorder since serving with the Gloucestershire Regiment in Northern Ireland.
After a long struggle with the condition, he adopted a young huskamute – a cross between a husky and a malamute – about eight months ago which he says has given him a new lease of life.
Steven, 54, said his new companion has helped him lead a happier and healthier lifestyle but the joy was short-lived after Elim Housing said the animal breached his tenancy agreement at Manor Gardens in Barnwood.
He has since struggled to find a home for him and Koda who he says is perfectly well-behaved and friendly.
But despite his troubles, Steven said giving up Koda was simply not possible for him and he is scouring the county to find a place that will take them both on.
He said he is being supported by the Royal British Legion.
“I have been offered bed and breakfast, but the dog can’t come. It’s just no at an option,” he said.
“He is like my baby – you wouldn’t get rid of your children, would you?
“In October last year I decided to get Koda. Before I had him I was not getting out of bed and I was very depressed. He has helped me through so much. I am much healthier and happier with him around.”
Steven’s ordeal has left both of them stressed, with Koda struggling to eat but Steven hopes he can find a pet-friendly home soon.
“I would love to get a place where he is welcome,” he said.
“All of my former neighbours loved him and they knew he was not a problem and would come and make a fuss of him all the time.”
“I have been bidding for properties but many have up to 60 people on their waiting list.”
A spokesman from Elim Housing previously said it would not comment on individual cases but said ending a resident’s tenancy is a decison that is “not taken lightly”.
The housing association has not commented on Mr Bateman’s current circumstances.