Hosting a longterm guest can wreak havoc on our routines.
But for animals, who often rely on consistency for so much of their physical and emotional well-being, a new human can be a huge disruption.
One Redditor found herself doing damage control when a recent guest stayed for the holidays. They shared their story in a post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit.
The Original Poster (OP), known as TheShining02 on the site, cut to the chase in the post’s title:
“AITA for telling my Granny she is a guest and my cats aren’t?”
OP kicked off with some background.
“For context, I have 2 cats and 2 dogs. I set my cats food dish on the counter so that the dogs can’t eat their food.”
“My Granny hates how we let our animals on furniture and on the counter. We let them on the furniture because they live in this house too and we aren’t cruel.”
“I keep my pets groomed and bathed every week so I know they are not that dirty.”
Granny’s presence has been palpable.
“My Granny is staying with us for the holiday week because I guess it’s a time of family.
“And she is sleeping in my bed because she has back problems and I am sleeping on a futon in the office.”
“This morning, my Granny is making coffee and the cat jumps up onto the counter to get to their food.”
OP recounted the heated back and forth that followed.
“Granny: pushes cat off the counter strongly: Cats do not belong on the counter”
“Me: Their food is on the counter. I keep it their so that the dogs don’t get into it.”
“Granny: They are filthy, and they shouldn’t be allowed in the kitchen.”
“Me: I bathe them every week and I keep their food in the kitchen because it’s better here than in the way. Don’t push my cat off the counter again.”
“Granny: I’m your elder, you listen to what I say.”
“Me: You are also a guest and I live here and my cats live here.”
OP caught some flack for that last rebuttal.
“Now my family is calling me rude for telling my granny that she is a guest and my cats aren’t.”
“Side note: I’m 19 and an adult. It’s not like I’m 14 or 16.”
OP also included an edit to iron out logistics.
“Edit: The counter that their food is on is an only wine rack that we keep away from food. We have it in the corner of the kitchen just for them.”
“I don’t let my animals near human food because of contamination.”
“The coffee however it at the top of the wine rack because we got a Sam’s Club sized box and it couldn’t fit in the other places. So that’s why she did that to their spot.”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Most Redditors took OP’s side. Regarding the age dynamic, they agreed with OP’s clear logic.
“NTA. Old people don’t get to make the rules simply because they’re old. That may be how the business and political worlds work, but it doesn’t have to be how your home works.”
“Also, literally, by definition, your grandma is a guest and the cats are not.” — VinnyCapistrano
“NTA. Just because someone is statistically closer to dying it does not give them the right to be an a**hole.” — mademoiselleroque
“NTA – She doesn’t get to dictate what you do in your own home just because she is older.”
“Great job standing up for your cats and your decisions, so many people just bend to the will of family, especially parents and grandparents, just because they are elders to which I say, ‘f that.’ ” — lc_2005
Others keyed in on the host-guest element.
“NTA. Your house your rules. No other consideration is valid.”
“I do not ‘let’ my cats on the counter. They just teleport there at will.”
“Your GM should not have laid hands on your cat in an aggressive manner, that’s just wrong.” — terranape
“NTA – you literally gave her a place to stay and your own bed to sleep in; she shouldn’t be complaining.”
“your cats are family and while i wouldn’t personally let my cat on my bench, it seems to be the best situation for you and you seem to make sure that they are well cleaned therefore i have no place to judge, she shouldn’t either.” — dopeasfu**444
“NTA. A guest in your home doesn’t get to tell you how to run your home. The first time I saw someone shove one of my animals would be the last time.” — NUT-me-SHELL
And finally, there were some mixed opinions about counter-surfing cats.
“NTA!! While I find it gross to have cats on the counter, it’s not my call, nor is it Granny’s.”
“I have friends who let their cats on the counters and tables so I just don’t eat there, but enjoy their hospitality all the same and give the cats pets and love.”
“Forcibly shoving cats (or any animals) is a no-no in my book and Granny would catch my wrath, too.” — Catfiche1970
“NTA! I don’t like cats on my table/counter but your house, your rules! If anyone shoved my cats or dog, I’m hoping the door hits them on the a** when I kick them out.” — thehoney69
“NTA, but cats really don’t belong on the counter. especially if they use litter boxes.” — TeepShow76
“NTA. Granny is way wrong for throwing cats off the counter. But cats on the counter is disgusting. Look up the sanitation issues of having your cats up there.”
“It doesn’t matter how often they are bathed. There are serious sanitation issues there.” — BashAtTheBeach96
“It’s your house but I never let my cats on the counter yuck. They use a litter box and it has urine and feces that stay on their feet.”
“However when I had a dog they had their own table that held their food so the dog wouldn’t eat it.” — Prize_Patience_2552
So OP can rest assured they were in the right about who runs the show. But they do also have food for thought about the cat’s comfort on the counter.