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Dad Refuses To Console Daughter After She Accidentally Lets Girlfriend’s Puppy Run Away On Road Trip

A young girl holds a dog in the backseat of a car
Mint Images/Getty Images

There is a famous old Hollywood saying, “never work with kids or dogs.”

They don’t listen and always steal focus.

And working with them together can be an even more chaotic experience.

So what about on a personal level?

How do you do the two work before drama ensues?

Case in point…

Redditor Soggy_Sand_4802 to discuss his experience and get some feedback. So naturally, he came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

He asked:

“AITA for scolding my daughter for letting the dog run away?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“My girlfriend Sarah and I had been discussing taking a road trip for a while due to the stress we had both been under.”

“It was my 9-year-old daughter Emily’s weekend with me, so it meant she’d be coming along with us.”

“We decided to make the trip on Emily’s weekend with me, and Sarah’s yorkie puppy Daisy had to come along.”

“I informed Emily that she had to stay in the car and watch Daisy while Sarah and I made a few stops.”

“Emily seemed to understand and was content playing on her iPad and eating snacks.”

“After a few stops, however, Emily started acting strangely.”

“I asked her what the matter was, and she said she was getting bored.”

“I told her sorry, hon, but she knew what she was in for for the get-go.”

“We could all do something together later.”

“Emily reluctantly agreed.”

“At one point, I stopped at a gas station to buy a drink, and Sarah went to use the restroom.”

“When I returned not even 15 minutes later, the back door was wide open, and Emily was crying next to the car.”

“Daisy was gone.”

“Emily confessed that she was bored and wanted to get out of the car, and Daisy jumped out.”

“Traffic was too busy for her to run after her.”

“We drove around looking for Daisy with no luck, and Sarah was inconsolable.”

“I was so angry and disappointed with Emily that I couldn’t even look at her.”

“I tried to explain to her why what she had done was wrong, but she just kept crying.”

“The road trip was cut short, and I dropped Emily back at her mom’s house.”

“Emily was really upset, but I was still mad and couldn’t speak to her.”

“I was too mad to even hug her or say goodbye.”

“Her mom called me ‘cruel and conniving,’ but I told her it was awful what Emily had done to Sarah’s dog.”

“I felt so helpless.”

“I wanted this weekend to be good for all of us.”


Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Many Redditors declared OP was the A**hole.

“Wow YTA. She’s nine. There a few things.”

“Why the actual hell would it be a good idea to leave a nine-year-old alone in the car?”

“Why would you give her sole responsibility of the dog? She’s nine?”

“Nine-year-olds get bored, don’t just leave her alone and expect her to be occupied. Maybe she got scared and wanted to find you.”

“She didn’t do this with any malicious intent. This is all negligence on your part.”

“YTA to the max.”

“Apologize and hope she forgives you.” ~ -the-omori-stairs

“I agree. He’s the a**hole, and everyone else paid the price.”

“I have a 9-year-old and they are never left in the car alone.”

“They should never be in charge of the puppy.”

“And imma add that they make harnesses and seatbelts to strap a dog into the seat.”

“Double irresponsible of him.” ~ otterofhides

“This doesn’t add up for me.”

“His GF went to the toilet, he went to buy a drink, and they got back to the car 15 minutes later.”

“That’s far too long. Did they stop for a quickie or something???”

“Regardless, they left a child and a pet unsupervised for that length of time. They are lucky nothing happened to the child.” ~ Estrellathestarfish

“Exactly! He even said he told her they could ‘all do something together later.'”

“What the actual f**k kind of father is this?”

“I’ve taken my kids on road trips.”

“There are no ‘us and we’ activities. It’s all or none.”

“Especially when there’s only the 3 of them!”

“Which means the child was not allowed to participate in any of the activities until after a full day alone in the car with a dog that is apparently more important than the child’s emotions.”

“A lot of the AITA posts make me irrationally angry with the poster, considering I’m not involved in any way, but this takes the cake of shi**y people.”

“YOU sir, are why women settle for abusive men.”

“Because our own fathers don’t respect and nurture our emotions, why should we expect any man to?”

“Ugh. OP. Do better. Much much better.”

“I’m not being harsh; I’m being real.”

“Wake up.”  ~ Stock_Entry_8912

“For real, and what are the ‘few’ stops they’re making anyways that the kid can’t come in!?”

“Then they say…’after a few stops she began to act strangely’ so they must have already made quite a few stops and the 9-year-old ‘knew what she was in for from the get-go!?'”

“Are you kidding me!?… I don’t know… sketchy… the kid can’t even stretch her legs!?”

“Just use an iPad, watch the dog, and sit in the car. She should be good wtf!?”

“Did she even have food or water!? YTA.” ~ snarkinessedess

“I may be wrong, but OP said it was a road trip, and from the sound of it, they’d been going for a while at this point, so I think this might have been it.”

“Maybe some of the stops were tourist attractions like stone circles or something (I don’t know how widespread those are, but that kind of thing).”

“What I don’t get is why it had to be that weekend.”

“They wanted a trip to relax, which is fair enough, but he gets his daughter every other weekend from the sound of the post.”

“Why not delay the trip by a week and spend the time actually with her rather than dragging her along in the car for ages?”

“And it would have been ages if they’ve already had to make multiple stops, and she’s getting bored by the time the dog was lost.”

“That’s the bit that pushed this into YTA territory for me, but more information about the trip would be useful.”

“I forgot about some of the other parts of the post.”

“It’s not just the dragging Emily along on the trip when she wouldn’t get to participate properly that is bad.”

“OP is also the AH for how he treated her afterward.”

“Refusing to say goodbye or give her a hug, and shouting at her so much, is just horrible.”

“Even if a child has done something wrong, which isn’t the case here as the dog running away was OP’s own fault, hold off on the telling off or shouting until they’ve been comforted and stopped crying.” ~ eliseseverina

“Father of 3 daughters here. I audibly gasped when he said he didn’t hug her goodbye or talk to her.”

“So much bad parenting going on here. FIFTEEN minutes for a pit stop with the 9-year-old alone in the car?!”

“Of course, she was bored and probably tired of looking after an adult’s dog.”

“WTF, OP?!”

“YTA times 1000.”  ~ bear_down34

“This. I don’t trust my dog not to bolt when I open the door, so she’s clipped onto a leash attachment that clips into a seat belt.”

“You can order them for super cheap.”

“This was irresponsibility on you and your gf’s part, leaving a dog and a child alone in a car.”

“I’m sorry the dog was lost.”

“I feel so bad for your daughter and the guilt she must feel, but this was all completely avoidable.”

“And I hope you didn’t permanently ruin your relationship with your daughter.”  ~ SamanthaScamander

“Let’s not forget that this stellar human also wilfully withheld affection for his daughter… his crying daughter.”

“You and G[irl]F[riend] made poor decisions, and now you’re blaming a 9-year-old for being left unattended in a car.”

“Being left unattended in the car after informing the adults that she needed to move around.”

“OP and gf stopped periodically for snacks while the daughter was strapped in the car (unattended), while also strapped to someone else’s dog.”

“Did OP scold GF for being an irresponsible pet owner and shirking her responsibilities?”

“Or is the disdain reversed solely for his daughter?”

“Gee, ain’t the love between parents and children grand? YTA!”  ~ Expeditious_growth

“Why on earth would you make a 9-year-old and dog stay in the car the whole time during a road trip?”

“Both of them are going to need potty breaks.”

“Sitting sedentary in a car all day is also not healthy for the girl.”

“Sarah should have been taking her dog out, and OP should have been taking his daughter out to stretch her legs, look at stuff, etc. YTA.”  ~ SpleenyMcSpleen


“Why are you leaving your 9-year-old daughter in the car alone?”

“Why do you guys get to stretch your legs and see things, and she doesn’t?”

“Why couldn’t you all get out (with the puppy on a leash)?”


“You were thinking only of yourself and gave no consideration to your DAUGHTER.”

“As a dog owner, I do feel sorry for your girlfriend.”

“I would be inconsolable if my dog ran away, but you guys are the adults and responsibility ultimately falls on you, not the literal child.”  ~ kimothy92

OP, Reddit doesn’t seem happy with you.

This is a rough situation.

Sounds like a long family talk is in order to discuss the situation.

Good luck, and we hope Daisy is returned home safely.