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Dog owners, am I being mean?

(128 Posts)
IHeartKingThistle Sun 27-Nov-16 14:19:47

My parents have 2 dogs, quite recently acquired and much adored. They are besotted with them and the dogs make them really happy, which is great obviously. One is very placid, one is less so and barks, steals food etc. I've never had dogs and I struggle to understand them and I'm a bit nervous if I'm honest. DS has always been nervous of dogs but is much better now.

I'm hosting all my side of the family for NY- no one's local so everybody comes to stay

The complicating factor is the cat - we have an ancient cat who is very easily stressed. When stressed she poos and wees everywhere, wails all night and pulls her fur out. Because of this I have said no dogs in the house.

DM is now talking about only coming up for the meal on NYD because of this. She's not being difficult with me but I would be gutted if they didn't come to stay as usual because they put the dogs first. If I'm completely honest, I wouldn't be wild about the dogs coming if we didn't have the cat, but I would consider it. The cat is the deal breaker for me.

I know I don't understand what it's like to have a dog. Am I being mean to expect them to find arrangements for the dogs for 2 days? I don't want to make them unhappy but it'll just be a nightmare if the dogs come.

FlyingElbows Sun 27-Nov-16 14:24:13

Yanbu to not want the dogs, that's entirely your call. However... you can't then dictate what the dog owner needs to do. If they don't want to, or can't, use kennels then they have no choice but to cut the visit short. Dogs are like children, they either need care or can only be left for a short time if you don't take them with you.

Sugarlightly Sun 27-Nov-16 14:24:52

It would be really difficult for them to find someone for the dogs to stay with over new year

exLtEveDallas Sun 27-Nov-16 14:26:21

If they are recently acquired then putting them in kennels for 2 days would be wrong, yes.

They can't leave them alone at home overnight, so your DMs suggestion of only coming for the meal is the sensible one.

They could bring them and crate them possibly, but only if they are already crate training, and certainly not for the whole period.

Let it go this year. Next year your mum may be able to kennel them.

Trifleorbust Sun 27-Nov-16 14:27:08

You're entirely within your rights to say no dogs, but I don't think you can object to them putting the dogs' needs first - they are completely dependent animals and your parents have now committed to them.

VeryBitchyRestingFace Sun 27-Nov-16 14:27:17

Who is going to care for 2 dogs over xmas?

MarsBarsAreShrinking Sun 27-Nov-16 14:27:30

No, you are not being mean and I say this as the owner of a very much loved and adored dog. He's MY dog, I don't expect anyone else to feel the same about him wink and I would never dream of taking him anywhere that he wasn't welcome (and would have no problem with this at all).

sparechange Sun 27-Nov-16 14:27:31

Your house, your rules
But it would be nigh on impossible for me to find some to take my dogs over NYE so imagine the same is true for your mum

If either dog is scared of fireworks, it would be even more difficult because a boarding kennel setup wouldn't work and it would be friends only.

What were you thinking she would do with the dogs?

ibelieveindragons Sun 27-Nov-16 14:27:48

How old are the dogs? If they are still puppies they can't be left, much like with human children. Kennels normally like to do a 'trial run' so if the dog is becoming stressed you can run back to collect them. My parents dog got a UTI first time in kennels from being stressed, you have to be so careful. Also possibly quite hard to find space on NYE? I do understand your predicament but dogs aren't like other pets, they like their pack!

ziggitypop Sun 27-Nov-16 14:28:50

It sounds like more of a practical issue than anything else for them. If the dogs can't stay in your house then what do you want them to do with them? Over NYE. They may be very limited for options about where to put two dogs whilst they go away.
Is there some compromise you can make? Eg the dogs or the cat are confined to one room during the visit? Or do you have a dog loving friend/neighbour/relative who lives nearby and might look after them?
If you're unable to help your mum and dad find a solution then you may have to accept that on this occasion they can only visit you for a short while.

IHeartKingThistle Sun 27-Nov-16 14:30:04

OK I guess IABU then! They're not that recently acquired - they've had them about a year. I guess I just don't get it but I am surprised and a bit sad that the choice will be to spend time with the dogs rather than the grandchildren. I'm sure that sounds melodramatic but that's basically how it feels. I won't tell them this of course!

VeryBitchyRestingFace Sun 27-Nov-16 14:30:19

Actually, I take that back. I'd care for your parents woofies over Xmas. Where do you live? grin

They might not get them back though.

gamerchick Sun 27-Nov-16 14:31:32

You cant have it both ways. Your mother is being sensible.

IHeartKingThistle Sun 27-Nov-16 14:31:40

Sorry loads of x posts! Not puppies but one is about a year I think. I haven't just announced they can't come- I've made it very clear for some time!

WorraLiberty Sun 27-Nov-16 14:32:24

She's not being difficult with me but I would be gutted if they didn't come to stay as usual because they put the dogs first.

It's not about putting the dogs first, it's about being responsible pet owners. Just as you are being a responsible pet owner by not wanting to stress your elderly cat out. Do you consider that 'putting your cat first'?

They're doing the right thing by coming for dinner and then going home to take care of their responsibilities.

I'm sure you'll all still have a great time despite this new arrangement.

Trifleorbust Sun 27-Nov-16 14:32:29

I am surprised and a bit sad that the choice will be to spend time with the dogs rather than the grandchildren.

That isn't the choice, because the dogs can't be left on their own. If they can't find two days of care over New Year (or can't afford it) then they have no option.

sparechange Sun 27-Nov-16 14:32:29

It isn't them choosing to spend more time with the dogs though. If they don't have anywhere for the dogs to be other than with them, they don't have any choice. They can't just leave dogs alone at their house for 2 days

You could turn this around and say you are prioritising your cat above your DPs desire to spend time with your DCs

MarsBarsAreShrinking Sun 27-Nov-16 14:34:12

Actually, I've given this some more thought and I think you are being a little harsh... sorry! They're not chosing the dogs over the grandchildren... they're not allowed to bring them (which is of course your right) so they can't just leave them can they?

I couldn't leave my dog in kennels or with anyone other than family so that sometimes limits trips out, nights away etc but I'm more than happy to make those sacrifices as that's what being a dog owner is about.

gamerchick Sun 27-Nov-16 14:34:26

Say your mother asked you to send the cat somewhere else so the dogs could come. You probably wouldn't entertain that thought. The dogs are important and they've come up with a solution albiet inconvenient in your head.

YouHadMeAtCake Sun 27-Nov-16 14:34:46

YANBU. We have dogs, they are adored too but no way would I expect to take them. It would be unfair on your cat.

PinkSwimGoggles Sun 27-Nov-16 14:37:54

not mean, no.
both you and your relative try to do what's best for their pets. which is great.

IHeartKingThistle Sun 27-Nov-16 14:38:56

The cat went to a cattery every single year when we went to them for Christmas (until their house got too small and we had to host). It wouldn't have occurred to me to do otherwise.

FrancisCrawford Sun 27-Nov-16 14:39:46

YANBU not wanting the dogs.

YABU expecting your DM to put them in kennels. She is still coming, just for a shorter period of time.

She's being a responsible pet owner and not making a fuss, just not staying over.

WorraLiberty Sun 27-Nov-16 14:41:17

What does your sending your cat to a cattery have to do with this?

BreconBeBuggered Sun 27-Nov-16 14:41:39

No, I don't think you're being mean, but YABU to think your parents should be less responsible about their pets than you are about yours.

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