No two people have the same relationship with dogs.
Even though dogs are commonly known as “man’s best friend”, some people’s feelings towards dogs are anything but friendly.
While some find dogs comforting, adorable and loyal, others might be allergic to or scared of dogs.
Thus, they tend to avoid being around dogs whenever possible.
The brother of Redditor LabrathorRetriever faced this very problem, as his girlfriend was terrified of dogs.
This proved a problem when bringing her to their family home, as the original poster (OP) required the use of a service dog.
Concerned that he may not have been as considerate towards his brother’s girlfriend as he could have been, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**Hole” (AITA), where he asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for refusing to shut myself or my service dog, away in my room while my brother’s girlfriend (gf) was visiting, as she was afraid of dogs?.”
The OP shared that his brother’s girlfriend hadn’t paid a visit to their house in a while for many reasons, but likely one reason in particular.
“Now that it’s getting warmer (ew), my brother has had his gf and friends over to the house again.”
“Instead of staying inside for maybe an hour, a half an hour?”
“They can come over and stay for half of the day.”
“Sometimes almost the full day.”
“Previously mentioned gf, is a new addition to the friend arsenal.”
“Bro and her have been dating for about a year?”
“But due to covid and a number of other things, she hasn’t been to the house like brother’s other friends.”
“Another reason that gf has not come around is that she has a fear of dogs.”
“We have 2 dogs.”
“At the start of the new year, we welcomed the 2nd dog into our home.”
“They are very good boys.”
“Dog 1 is about 70-80 pounds?”
“Dog 2 is around 100 pounds.”
“These dogs are lean, not chubby.”
“Gf’s apprehension about coming over increased when Dog 2 joined us.”
“Unlike Dog 1, who is a pet.”
“Dog 2 is my service dog.”
“This good boy must remain with me, even when we’re at home.”
“I’ve had to explain to gf that I can’t let Dog 2 outside to romp the day away in the fenced/protected big yard like Dog 1.”
“In an effort to make gf more comfortable, my parents have taken Dog 1 out of the house with them when gf finally started to come over.”
“But Dog 2 and I remain.”
However, when the OP’s brother brought his girlfriend over under the assumption that all dogs were out of the house, he made a request that the OP was not eager to oblige.
“Yesterday we had an incident.”
“Gf came over sometime in the morning, our parents left with Dog 2.”
“I was up late working and woke up at around midday, gf was very startled when I came downstairs with Dog 2 to go outside and when we came back inside, gf was visibly upset.”
“My brother assumed that I had gone out with our parents and brought Dog 2 with me, when he didn’t see me in the morning.”
“Upon asking one of his friends, they confirmed he told the group that.”
“As I’m getting food and grabbing a snack for Dog 2, my bro comes up and asks me if I can go back to my room with Dog 2 or if I can leave Dog 2 in his kennel up there as his presence is upsetting gf.”
“I sympathize with gf and her fears but I need this dog with me 24/7.”
“It doesn’t matter if we’re at home, he has to stay by my side.”
“So I apologize but tell him no.”
“’It’s not my fault that you assumed Dog 2 wasn’t here and then told gf without checking’.”
“‘I won’t shut myself away in my own home’.”
“‘But we’ll give gf her space and not approach her’.”
“That wasn’t enough for my brother so he stomps out of the house with gf and the rest of his friends.”
“They’re all calling me an inconsiderate AH as they leave.”
“They went to another friend’s house after that.”
“My phone has been getting dinged and buzzed by my brother’s friends and gf’s parents.”
“They all think that I was a major AH and that.”
“’It wouldn’t have killed you to put that dog away for a couple of hours’.”
“Or parents don’t agree and say that I was not an AH.”
“But they’re our parents, so…I don’t know.”
“AITA for refusing to shut myself or my service dog, away in my room while my brother’s gf was visiting, as she was afraid of dogs?”
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 – Everybody Sucks Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to leave his own house with his service dog.
Everyone agreed that it was unreasonable for the OP to have to leave his home just because his brother’s girlfriend was afraid of dogs, particularly as the OP needed the dog for his own health and safety.
“It won’t kill them to go somewhere else.”
“It’s your house, not hers.”
“The fact that your parents leave when she comes over is ridiculous to me.”
“Why is everyone bending over backwards for this girl?”
“What ages are we talking here?”
“This seems too insane to be true.”- Krakengreyjoy
“NTA You need your service dog, your brother doesn’t need his GF.”- Meatloaf_Mondai
“As someone who’s wife has a service animal you are absolutely NTA for keeping your service dog with you.”
“If their purpose for being raised and trained is to support a person then they are on the job being around.”
“If you are in a situation where you need a service dog, which aren’t cheap or easy to get, even free service animals still take years on waitlist and someone is paying lots to train them, then nobody should expect you to be separated from them.”
“Everyone else is in the AH territory for treating your service dog like he is a pet instead of a highly trained skilled worker.”- xakthos
“It is a SERVICE dog.”
“You need him to function.”
“She needs to get over it or remove herself from the situation.”
“This is a her problem.”-cadmium2093
“It’s your home, why does your brother’s gf’s needs trump yours?”
“You should not have to shut yourself away as a prisoner in your own home due to fears.”
“I am really scared of large dogs and there’s no way I would ever ask someone with a service dog stay in their room or put the dog somewhere else.”
“Your dog is a medical necessity.”
“It would be like your brother asking you to turn off a pacemaker or hearing aids.”
“He can’t expect the world to bend over backwards to accommodate his gf’s fears.”
“They can hang out elsewhere or in public.”
“NTA and anyone who thinks you are needs to Google the term ‘service dog’ for the explanation why you’re not.”- MySquishyFishy
“It’s your home and your dog.”
“That its service dog makes your brother and his gf giant a**holes.”- canuck_2022
“It’s your home, you live there, you need the service dog.”
“GF is an AH, your brother is an AH and his friends are AH’s.”
“That dog is more loyal than your brother.”
“I’m so sorry, stick to your guns.”- elizabethjanet.
“NTA, you need the dog to be with you and your brother’s gf does not need to hang out at your house at any particular time.”
“And it’s highly inappropriate to ask you to stay shut in your room due to your medical needs so they can just hang out, which they can do anywhere.”
“I was wondering, is it possible to compromise by having them stay in one specific room and you and the dog don’t go into that room specifically while they’re there?”
“They can close the door or put in a dog gate for that room if it makes her feel better.”
“Like your brother’s bedroom or the living room if you’d have no reason to go in there for that time.”-charonthemoon
“They don’t need to hang out at your home where they know a dog will be.”
“Also, they could stay in his room.”- Agreeable_Way_9560
“The dog isn’t the issue.”
“You live there.”
“She does not.”
“If she doesn’t like the way you live, she can kick rocks.”
“If my bro tried to do this to me, I would tell him that is a you problem not a me problem.”
“Lock yourself away in your room?”
“That’s some top tier BS.”- ledlin99
It won’t be easy for the girlfriend of the OP’s brother to get over her fear of dogs.
But if she and the OP’s brother want this relationship to work without causing tension with the family, she will have to work at getting used to being around the OP’s service dog.