Woman divides family after clapping back at SIL who gave ultimatum over rescue dog

The holiday season is known for spending time with loved ones, but what happens when accommodating everyone’s needs becomes a challenge, especially when pets are involved?

A recent post on the ‘Am I the A*****e?‘ subreddit exposed a dilemma where a woman’s sister-in-law made a big song and dance over the presence of the family dog during this year’s upcoming Christmas celebrations.

The woman, aged 30, took to Reddit to shared her story about unexpectedly hosting the family Christmas due to issues at her parents’ house.

Her brother, James (34), and sister-in-law, Sylvia (33), joined them, but a complication arose because Sylvia apparently has trauma related to large dogs, causing her fear of the woman’s sizable rescue dog.

“Sylvia has trauma relating to large dogs and as such is petrified of my dog. He is a very large rescue dog. We are working on retraining and socialising him, but so far he’s been fine around most people. She knows all this but she is still scared and saying she won’t be comfortable staying in the house with the dog,” the woman wrote.

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Despite the woman’s continued dedication to retraining and socializing the dog, Sylvia remained uncomfortable and suggested sending the dog to a boarding kennel for the holidays. However, the woman was unwilling to do so, saying that the dog’s home is with them, and removing him simply because Sylvia was scared of him seemed unnecessary.

The family found themselves divided on this issue, leading to arguments in the group chat. Sylvia insisted that, as family, they should accommodate and prioritize her, sparking an immediate response from the woman.

“I replied saying I have a responsibility to my dog, that I adopted my dog, not her, and that if she can’t deal with it then she needs to spend the holidays elsewhere,” she said.

“This kicked off an argument because Sylvia said I was weaponizing her background, which I don’t think I was,” the woman continued, referring to Sylvia’s past growing up in and out of foster care. “My point was that I accepted responsibility for my dog, for his well-being and his comfort and frankly, the safety of others around him, I have no such responsibility for Sylvia.”

The woman’s mother felt that certain words used might trigger Sylvia, while her father supported her stance. James joined the argument, stating that Sylvia doesn’t feel welcome at Christmas, despite the woman’s continued assurance that Sylvia is welcome as is, with the dog remaining in the home.

Credit / Getty.

“My mother is saying I shouldn’t have used those words as I should have known it would be triggering for her. My dad is on my side. James is now saying Sylvia doesn’t feel welcome at Christmas, even though I’ve told him she is very welcome to come to the home as is, I’m just not removing the dog,” the woman’s post concluded.

Many people took to the comments section to side with the woman, with one person writing: “Displacing a dog and her thinking she’s entitled and will be ‘triggered’ is her problem. If I were going to be a GUEST in someone’s home I’d NEVER ask them to get rid of a family member/pet because ‘I’m scared.’ Allergies I understand, but not fear. I’d go to a hotel. It’s terribly rude to ask someone to get rid of a pet .. it’s also an inconvenience to the host. I’d never be that rude!”

Another person agreed, chiming in with: “I think SIL should have just politely declined or suggested staying at a hotel and meeting out for dinner rather than ask to put any dog — much less a rescue dog — back in a kennel. He’s probably just learning to trust his new family.”

Someone else added: “She can cater to her own anxieties then. As someone who struggles with anxiety, I would never make someone accommodate me to such an extent. Your solution was totally reasonable and fair and if it’s not good enough, then she can figure s*** out herself.”

What do you think of this situation? What would you have done? Let us know in the comments!


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