Most of us can see the merit in going for the occasional spa day, whether it’s for us or for someone we love, like one of our pets.
But admittedly, sometimes the event can go horribly wrong, according to the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor putupyourpaws was shocked when the new dog groomer she sent her two dogs to not only didn’t listen to her directions but also tried to withhold one of her dogs.
When the groomer refused to give her dog back, the Original Poster (OP) escalated the situation.
She asked the sub:
“AITA for ruining a small business after they tried to steal my dog?”
The OP recently tried out a new dog grooming service.
“I’m decompressing and need a judgment because friends and family are split and now I’m feeling guilty.”
“I’m expecting my first kid soon, I’m 8 and a half months pregnant, and I didn’t want to do the usual bathing and nail trims on our dogs as my mobility is limited.”
“We used to have a groomer we took them to a few times a year while I did monthly maintenance in-between, but they closed during the pandemic, so we decided to try a new one.”
The OP’s dogs had specific needs.
“I have two purebred dogs that came from a rescue and both have had (now managed) behavioral issues since I adopted them.”
“My Great Dane loves people and has been around small children before with no issues, but he is terrified of other dogs.”
“He has never hurt another dog, but he will bark and get fearful if one runs up to him if I haven’t been able to brace him.”
“Of course, since he’s so big, he looks very scary when he’s barking.”
“Our Corgi, on the other hand, has severe separation anxiety and doesn’t mind dogs or people but hates being left home alone, or being away from me specifically.”
The OP tried to make arrangements with the groomer.
“Our old groomer let me come in with the dogs, but the new groomer said I wasn’t allowed on the phone.”
“I talked through my dogs’ problems with her and she assured me she could handle it.”
“I even paid for an extra 1/2 hour so my Great Dane would have time to get out without running into her next client.”
“Since I wasn’t allowed to come in, and it’s usually harder on the Corgi leaving me than leaving my husband, he decided to drop them off.”
There was an unfortunate surprise waiting when they tried to pick up the dogs.
“My husband mentioned to the woman (home-run groomer) I was expecting when he dropped the dogs off, and apparently she gave a bit of a face but said nothing.”
“When he went to pick the dogs up, she gave him our Corgi but said she was ‘seizing’ the Great Dane as he had been aggressive to one of her dogs (I was assured he wouldn’t be subjected to strange dogs at all).”
“She also said, as we were expecting a baby, she couldn’t give us back a reactive dog.”
“There isn’t enough to the character limit on Reddit to detail what the next 7 hours were like, but it escalated to me calling the cops to finally get my dog back.”
“It was the worst experience. I ended up blasting her ‘business’ on social media in the heat of the moment, and I think something also happened with the police, as all her pages were down the next day.”
“It seems like she’s closed her business down completely.”
The OP had mixed feelings after.
“I really feel like my reaction was justified, but some friends have called me a ‘Mega-Karen.'”
“My mom also said she was probably just genuinely trying to look out for our unborn baby and I went too far.”
“To me, it was a HUGE overstep and illegal.”
“I’ve also worked in rescue, and I worked with progressional trainers with these two dogs.”
“If anyone had said they posed a threat, it would have been different, but as mentioned, they have no history of aggression to people.”
“And as with any dog, they will never be left unsupervised with our baby or have access to them at all without safeguards anyways.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some said the groomer had no authority to take any dog away.
“NTA. This woman didn’t have the authority to ‘seize’ your dog.”
“If you have to call the police to right the wrong of a ridiculous business owner, you have every right to leave a negative review wherever you please.” – NUT-me-SHELL
“What the business lady did was wrong! Only the SPCA can actually seize animals! You should let her know that too!” – DustOfTheDesert
“I’m a vet tech, and veterinarians can’t even seize a dog. Even when they bring it in and admit that they abused the dog. We still have to return the dog to the owner.”
“Although, now in Ohio, veterinarians are mandatory reporters, and if we suspect animal abuse, we have to report the authorities because of the link between animal abuse and domestic violence.”
“Still, we can not seize the dog ourselves. She deserves to have her business shut down.” – dobermom1975
“Don’t forget to keep in her home with her own pets, pets which ‘were’ the direction of the Dane aggression in the 1st instance.”
“I never met a Dane or a Harlequin to be actually aggressive, sure they sound aggressive when they bark because they are a whole lot of big doggos, but they are some gentle giants.”
“OP, sure your Dane would bond quickly with your baby. Congrats for standing for all your babies, furry and not!” – Mad-Sparrow
“This car you’re driving is not safe for a baby – I’m taking it so you can’t drive it.”
“A baby could choke on that pendant you’re wearing. I’m taking it for the sake of your baby.”
“Your 2-year-old doesn’t know how to be gentle with babies. I have to take him because it’s not safe for him to be around the baby.”
“Tell your family you’ll listen to them if they can logically defend any of the above as someone just looking out for a baby. What this criminal did is no different.”
“NTA” – JuliaX1984
Others agreed and said the OP was right to defend her dog.
“OP paid the groomer extra knowing her dog, and I wouldn’t call her a Karen. I won’t stand by doing nothing when someone tries to take my pet.” – BOSSBABY33
“NTA, she was a groomer, and she had no authority to ‘seize’ your dog. I would have called the police too.”
“You informed them your dog didn’t like other dogs, he wasn’t roaming the streets attacking other dogs. He was left to be groomed and she had no right to make any call on your dog’s well-being.” – Christinemfm_84
“My other half swears I am the much more dangerous of the two of us for someone to piss off or attempt to take advantage of.”
“Him? He’s 6’4″ and was in the military, still in relatively good physical condition, and looks intimidating as hell even though he barely has an aggressive bone in his body unless you attack him first.”
“Me? I’m 5’3″ on a bad hair day, overweight, walk with the help of a cane, and look like everyone’s favorite granny who bakes them cookies.”
“He’s right. I am the more dangerous of the two of us.”
“Think you’re going to ‘seize’ (steal) one of my furbabies? You must not enjoy living much.” – OkieRheo
“She literally stole a whole-a** living being, one who already has been through some trauma and didn’t need more from some crazy dog stealing groomer.”
“If the groomer is going to use her business to try to steal people’s pets, she shouldn’t be in business.”
“Frankly, in that situation, I don’t think I’d let things escalate for hours before involving the police, I’d go straight to calling them.” – Alert-Potato
“I am horrified by even the thought of this. ‘I met your dog and you one time and have made a decision’ despite no authority or right that then causes you to involve law enforcement.”
“You may very well have saved many people from this experience, which could even be a ruse to sell your dog or something.”
“It is not like the dog was emaciated or uncared for medically, and I am sure it was not good for you to go through this while pregnant.”
“Honestly, the AUDACITY is just shocking.” – Giraffes-anonymous
Some also said the OP was right to post reviews of the business.
“I would go a step further and argue that you don’t just have the right, but also a moral obligation to leave a bad review.” – antijulius
“If a groomer I was considering had attempted to ‘seize’ a client’s dog and required police intervention to return it, I would definitely want to know!” – ApproximatelyAppropos
“My dogs both passed recently (old age, they were both fifteen y/o Cocker Spaniels) but one of them would sometimes get testy around strange dogs.”
“She had never hurt a person or anything and had never got into an actual issue with another dog (just yanking on leashes and growling), but we still made sure to inform the vet (my parents groomed our dogs after our old groomer hurt her on ‘accident’).”
“I would want to know if someone would ‘seize’ dogs they deemed ‘dangerous’ despite being warned of their temperament.” – cashlikejohnny
“No, a dog groomer that, after careful explanation of a dog’s personality and a request and paying for accommodations, attempts to seize a client’s dog because they ignored everything they were told, can’t stay in business.”
“You’re doing a service warning people of a potential terrible experience around a paid-for service. NTA.” – IDKareyou77
“Look up other reviews, and look into a mobile groomer. My family has one for an anxious old lady mini doxie and it’s been great for her.”
“Our groomer took time with us to get to know her and her needs, you can find one that will work with your dogs.”
“They come to you, there is zero risk of mystery dog incidents, only one person for your pups to get used to, way less noise and movement around them. It’s pretty awesome.” – SouthoftheBorderline
While the OP was somewhat concerned that she may have cost someone their whole business, the subReddit reassured her that she had done the right thing.
Whether the groomer had the best at heart or something far more sinister, the surrounding community deserved to know what they were potentially subjecting their pets to. Since it was a new business, the word likely hadn’t yet spread.