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Dog Owner Called Out For Refusing To Take Next Elevator Despite Neighbor’s ‘Hysterical’ Fears

Jim Craigmyle/Getty Images

We all love our pets.

Our neighbors, on the other hand, might think somewhat less fondly of them.

Some neighbors are resentful of the noises they make, or the little presents they might leave on their property, while others might be genuinely afraid of them.

All of which becomes even more problematic in an apartment building.

Redditor ash9991win and their dog found themselves constantly frustrated by their neighbors, who frequently asked them to wait for another elevator so they could ride down sans dog.

Until the original poster (OP) finally had enough and rode down with them in spite of their request.

A move that the OP’s neighbors didn’t appreciate in the slightest.

Worried that they may have been out of line or insensitive, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where they asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for not taking the next elevator because of a woman’s fear of my dog?”

The OP explained how the OP wanted to be sensitive to their neighbor’s phobia of their dog, but slowly began to lose their patience by constantly appeasing them.

“I live in a high rise.”

“Our apartment is very dog friendly.”

“It has a built-in dog park on a lower floor.”

“I take my dog there all the time to do her business.”

“There are like 25 dogs in my building.”

“I have an 8-month-old small dog.”

“She weighs 5kgs.”

“One day, I had my dog in my arms and she had her leash on.”

“I waited for the elevator and a crowded elevator arrived.”

“A woman immediately started screaming, and I am not exaggerating here, she began screaming hysterically and cowered behind her husband who asked me to take the next elevator.”

“I obliged the first time.”

“But it kept happening over and over.’

“Every time she would scream and cry and ask me to take the next elevator.”

“She complained to our building management about several other dogs in the apartment already.”

‘And our building sometimes has elevator issues which means I would wait for several minutes for the next one.”

“So when I ran into her again, I just stepped in and ignored her screaming.”

“Her husband called me an a**hole.”

“Am I the a**hole here?”

Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:

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

Everyone agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for boarding the elevator in spite of their neighbor’s screams.

The OP’s neighbor found little sympathy from the Reddit community for her behavior, which some felt was a very serious issue that needed immediate help.

Many agreed that if she was so cripplingly afraid of dogs, then she and her husband should be living in a building which doesn’t allow them.


“Do they just ride the elevator all day looking for dogs to scream at?”

“How does she manage to go outside with dogs everywhere?”

“She needs to get professional help for her issues, and/or live somewhere pets aren’t allowed.”-k1p1coder


“While a phobia of dogs is a thing and not fun to have.”

“It’s not anyone’s problem but her own, she can’t expect everyone to get rid of their dogs because she’s scared of them and she can’t expect them to wait longer or anything else either.”

“She has the fear, so it’s her problem.”

“Also, why the hell would she go live in a DOG-friendly apartment building if she’s so deadly afraid of them?”

“It’s like sleeping outside during Australia’s spider season with arachnophobia?”- zZombi__


“If she has a paralyzing fear of dogs, she probably shouldn’t live in a dog-friendly apartment.”

“If you only had to do this once, I guess that would be fine, but having to do this MULTIPLE times on a regular basis?”


“Way too much to ask of you.”- gayforaliens1701


‘If she’s so deathly afraid of dogs, why move into an obviously dog-friendly apartment?”

‘Are there stairs that she could take instead to avoid ever seeing a dog in the elevator?”- 3spoopy_5me


“This seems absolutely unreasonable.”

“They are welcome to get out of the elevator and wait for the next one if they want.”

“There is no reason you should be so inconvenienced for a very normal thing.”- SDstartingOut


“You were very nice in the beginning by accommodating her fear, but after a while, that just seems like she is inconveniencing other people, especially since you said a lot of people have dogs.”

“She should just take the stairs if it is that bad.”- savage1878


“She is welcome to step off of the public elevator if any perfectly normal activities make her uncomfortable.”

“The real a-hole is her husband.”- DetailedAmbivalence

“NTA why would someone with that much phobia leave in an apartment building that caters to dogs.”- Lonely_Shelter_4744


“She has serious problems and needs to take care of them herself.”

“If it’s such a big deal, she could easily jump out the elevator instead.”- bluebeans808


“Why can’t SHE take the next one?”- dariamorgandorffer


“Why would you choose to live in an apartment building with an attached dog park if you’re scared of dogs?”

“That’s like saying I’m afraid of heights but I live in the top penthouse in Burj Khalifa.”-Usual_Zone2543


“If anyone is it’s the person who decided to move into a dog-friendly building, and expects everyone to constantly cater to her phobia.”- sunsetflower32

‘Honestly, I find it kind of hilarious that it happened multiple times in a row.”

“You just standing there holding a cute little dog, and then the door opens and she screams, then goes back up being fine, then seeing the dog and screaming again.”

“It just seems like it’s a part of a comedy show or something.”

“I may be an a**hole for thinking that but OP you’re definitely NTA.”- SplatterOut

“If my daughter with severe arachnophobia chooses to move into a spider-friendly apartment complex I’d tell her it’s her responsibility since she choose to live somewhere she’d be exposed to get phobia frequently.”

“If she moved into a not spider-friendly apartment complex and she was on the elevator first and someone came in with a tarantula on their shoulder I’d say they were the a**hole because she made a choice to mitigate her fear by living away from lots of spiders.”

“Someone breaking that rule isn’t entitled to the communal space.”

“In the end you, sir, living in a dog-friendly complex are NTA.”

“She should definitely not be there if her fear is that extreme.”- SapphireFarmer


“Dog-free/pet-free buildings exist for a reason.”- No_Stand4235


“I totally understand if someone has a fear of dogs.”

“However, I would expect that someone with that severe of a phobia would move to a high rise that does not allow pets.”

“She can’t move to a community that will definitely have pets and then dictate when people with pets can use the elevator.”- MisterUltimateXRP

“NTA, her problem, so she should wait for the next elevator.”

“So entitled, and then to call you actual names irl is extremely rude as well.”

“I would complain to building management that these people are ‘disturbing the peace’ or something.”- Ceecee_soup


“I can’t believe the husband defended her nightmare behavior in a dog-friendly building.”-Aggravating-Joke2743


“She should have moved to an apartment building that doesn’t allow dogs.”-Mysterious_Friend_52


“If you don’t want to live with dogs find a place that doesn’t allow pets.”

“It’s not rocket science.”

“If they have a problem they can move or leave the elevator they can’t seriously expect you to delay your plans every single time.”- a-_rose


“It’s not the general public’s responsibility to cater to such an extreme phobia.”

“She’s going to either have to learn to deal or find a less dog-friendly place to live.”- DinoSnuggler


“I too would make a concession the first time just so I don’t have to deal with it.”

“On an ongoing basis, she is free to get off the elevator and wait for the next one herself.”

“But sounds like she should move tbh.”- BazTheBaptist


“IF there’s a next time, tell her husband that it’s their turn to get the hell off and wait for the next elevator.”- an0nym0uswr1ter

“Is it well known the building is very pet friendly?”

“If so, she willingly moved into a community with multiple pets on site.”

“She’s the AH for expecting others to cater to her phobia.”


“If the building is not advertised as pet friendly, even if it isn’t, she should have inquired on the number of pets in the building prior to moving in, it’s still NTA as there are stairs and you don’t mention her having a physical disability preventing her from using the stairs.”- firenoodles

The OP’s neighbor isn’t the only person on Earth to have a fear of dogs.

Had this been on her own, personal property, this might be a different story.

But part of living in an apartment building is sharing common areas with neighbors, and their pets.

If this is too much for the OP’s neighbor to handle, then she and her husband might want to start looking for another building.

Written by John Curtis

A novelist, picture book writer and native New Yorker, John is a graduate of Syracuse University and the children's media graduate program at Centennial College. When not staring at his computer monitor, you'll most likely find John sipping tea watching British comedies, or in the kitchen, taking a stab at the technical challenge on the most recent episode of 'The Great British Baking Show'.