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Parent Balks After Ex Demands Daughter’s Pets Be Rehomed Due To Half-Brother’s Allergies

A girl hugging a Guinea Pig
Cavan Images/Getty Images

Sometimes, compromises might need to be made to ensure a happy family is maintained.

Most often, it means limiting, if not eliminating entirely, something that one member of the family holds very dearly. Of course, this will only please all parties if this is a mutual decision.

If one person demands it against the wishes of others, the outcome will most likely not be a happy one.

Redditor Early_Bedroom5353 recently purchased a rabbit and two guinea pigs for their daughter.

Unfortunately, whenever the original poster (OP)’s daughter went to stay with their ex and her half-brother, things got “hairy” over some family pets.

As a result, the OP’s ex felt there was only one solution.

A solution the OP was not eager to take part in.

Wondering if they were making the right decision, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where they asked fellow Redditors:

“AITA for not rehoming my daughter’s pets eventhough her brother is allergic to them?”

The OP explained why their ex demanded they rehome their daughter’s pets:

“I have a 14 years old daughter with my ex.”

“Recently I bought a rabbit and 2 guinea pigs for my daughter.”

“To be clear the pets stay at my home however her half brother (my ex’s son) still has allergic reactions around her.”

“They share a bedroom so he is around my daughter a lot.”

“We don’t know which one he is allergic to so my ex is demanding I rehome all the pets.”

“My daughter refuses to do that and honestly I don’t want to do it either.”

“I told her that her son can use medication or my daughter can live with me full time and she started yelling at me calling me a bunch of names.”


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

While the Reddit community was somewhat divided, they generally agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to rehome their daughter’s pets.

Most agreed that this was a problem easily solved by the OP’s daughter simply showering properly and changing her clothes whenever she stayed with the OP’s ex, making rehoming the pets unnecessary, with others questioning why the OP’s daughter and her half-brother were even sharing a room in the first place.

“I’m gonna say NTA simply because at 14, daughter should not be sharing a bedroom with brother.”

“That’s not ok.”

“Also, ex is ignoring a few very simple fixes in that the pets don’t reside with her- have daughter change her clothes bag them, and take a shower when she comes in.”

“It’s obvious the kid is reacting to dander or fur.”

“Some clothes need to stay at moms to avoid exposure.”

“Limit what goes back and forth.”

“The answer is to prevent cross contamination- not rehome pets at another house.”

“Ex needs to freaking try that before making demands.”- whichwitch9


“Your ex has ZERO say about pets in YOUR home.”- The_Bad_Agent


“If the boy doesnt come to your house.”

“As for a girl and boy sharing a room, at a certain age they’ll need their own room anyways, better to start now is what id tell your ex.”

“The bigger issue is the shared room than a little gerbil hair.”- Swimming_Category_17

“A 14 year old girl having to share a room with her brother?”

“Ot might be time to change the custody agreement.”

“That’s just wrong.”

“Don’t have kids of you can’t properly take care of them.”

“And NTA. It might be a good idea to have her take a shower and change into new clothes that had no contact whatsoever with the pets before going back.”

“Should help with the allergic reaction.”- Thecatisright


“But it’s not enough to just take meds.”

“They help but don’t cure the issue.”

“Your daughter needs to change her clothes and shower when she gets there and ideally have things there that she keeps away from the pets like separate clothes and bag etc.”

“It is miserable to have allergies and meds only ease the situation some way.”- Jazzberry81


“Also it’s insane to me that all these posters are in about the sharing of a bedroom.”

“I’m 35 F[emale], grew up poor in San Diego and almost every single one of my friends growing up shared a room with siblings regardless of gender.”

“I shared a room with my brother until I moved out at 17 though we generally took turns in who would actually sleep in there once I was like 13 and he was 10, the other one of us would just sleep on the couch.”

“I have two boys and we live in a 2 bedroom townhouse that’s owned by my in-laws, we basically just pay the mortgage.”

“There’s literally zero way we could afford to buy or even rent a 3 bedroom even in the cheapest, most dangerous area in our city or surrounding cities.”

“Like literally a studio is like $1800-2500 a month.”

“People can quote all the laws all the time, but realistically those are only going to apply in a situation where cps/foster care is already engaged.”

“I feel like so many posters here are so insanely out of touch with what actually constitutes most of lower and lower middle class families.”

“Anyway, again you’re fine brother.”

“Your daughter’s mom needs to get over it and just try and mitigate by having your daughter shower when she gets home.”

“Your kid is almost old enough to get a job- what if she worked at Petco?”

“Or volunteered at an animal shelter?”

“Or maybe her bff has rabbits or something?”

“She needs to worry about what she can control, not about what she can’t.”

“I almost guarantee she’d just deal of it was any of the other things.”

“It’s just easier to be mad at you.”- IsannahRoselight


“If the kid is allergic to second hand animal contact via his sister, he needs to be on allergy medication because everything is going to set him off.”

“Your daughter can shower immediately when she gets to that house and put her clothes in the wash.”

“Or she can shower just prior to leaving yours and out on fresh clothes (without touching pets again).”

“That a reasonable enough solution from your/your daughters part.”

“Re-homing beloved pets isn’t reasonable.”

“Your ex seems difficult.”- Fun-Translator-5776


“This biggest issue – they should not be sharing a room to begin.”

“She is a teenager and alot happens to your body and she deserves privacy.”

“How old is the boy?”

“Putting that aside.”

“They aren’t their pets and she has no say.”

“It sounds like she is not vacuuming enough, washing bedding, clothes etc etc and the dander is building up or not taking any precautions whatsoever.”

“If he was allergic purely because of her clothes – he would be constantly having attacks in other areas of his life and she should be working on a ways to manage his allergies or he’d never be able to leave the house.”- thescarfismissing

While others agreed that the OP’s ex was out of line in asking them to rehome their daughter’s pets, they also felt the OP could have made a better effort to ensure her son’s allergies weren’t affected, with some pointing out how rabbits and guinea pigs shouldn’t be cohabitating.

“Guinea pigs and rabbits can’t live together and require separate food, housing, and care.”

“Both species also need a lot of space and attention, not just cages in a kid’s room.”

“ESH unless you do some research on how to take proper care of all three animals since they’re living with you full-time.”- NinjaDefenestrator


“Before your daughter goes over to her half brothers house, make sure she’s in clean clothes and lint roll her down.”

“That’s the least you should do if she’s going back over.”

“Dander sticks to everything.”

“Fur follows you everywhere.”

“That being said, it’s your house.”

“It could be the Timothy Hay, the dander, or the fur, but your ex doesn’t get to dictate what happens in your house.”

“If the half-brothers allergies are that bad, your ex needs to find out what he’s allergic to so he can take proper precautions as well.”

“That should be priority.”

“This way if he’s around something else that triggers his allergies, he knows what to do.”

You both need to take precautions.

You and your ex need to find a middle ground.- KineticaMayhem


“Because two grown adults and neither of you can figure out something as simple as having the kid take a shower.”- RandomModder05

As the rabbit and guinea pig remain at the OP’s house, where their ex’s son never seems to be present, rehoming them seems fairly unnecessary.

But if the boy’s allergies are so severe that he has a reaction to their dander from the OP’s daughter’s clothes, then it seems like extra caution could be taken.

Hopefully the OP and their ex will realize that there is middle ground they both can reach, which could make everyone happy.

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'.