Post # 1
Just wanted to see what others thought of my situation. I have 3 pets (1 small dog and 2 large cats). SO loves my dog and he tolerates one of my cats. The other cat however, he can’t stand and I can’t really blame him because he IS the most annoying and destructive cat I’ve ever met and I put up with him because I know that I’m the only person in the world he trusts. He is very aggressive towards everyone else, attacks them for no reason at all.
Yesterday my SO were talking about the future and he mentioned that eventually we would move in together (meaning I would move into his place because he owns it and I only rent mine). He said my dog and cat would be allowed to come with me but he couldnt live with the mean one. Part of me was a little put off by it, because he’s my pet and I love him even though he drives me crazy (wakes me up multiple times when I’m sleeping on purpose, claws the carpet/furniture, attacks guests). I do understand where my SO is coming from though because if the tables were turned I would have a hard time opening up my home to an animal that hated me and I hated… as well as 2 other animals, none of which were mine to begin with. His condo is fairly small and it will be tight with him, me and my pets.
He is also kind of type A and very clean. I try my best to keep up with all the shedding they do but it’s inevitable that with 3 pets there is going to pet hair on things sometimes.
Just curious what other people think about him requesting that before we move in togther I find my cat a new home (I’m hoping my mom will offer to take him for me). Is it crossing a line to ever ask someone to give up a pet? or is it reasonable considering they don’t get along and I have 2 other pets he is allowing to move in?
Post # 3
- Wedding: July 2014 - Prague
Well, I’m sure you will get responses ranging from “He’s evil” to “no problem”.
It comes down to the question of are YOU willing to give up that cat?
Personally, I am sure people do this all the time– and for various reasons. In fact, my FI had two cats. When we moved we only brought one. For one thing, it is very expensive to transport cats, but also, the second cat hated me and peed on everything I owned. She now has a wonderful home where she is happy and doesn’t pee. 😉 But if FI wasn’t willing to part with her… I’m not sure what we would have done.
Post # 4
I’m of the thought that my pets are part of who I am, just like kids are. Sadly, it does happen all the time that people decide having a pet isn’t convenient, or it’s too expensive, or the new GF/BF doesn’t like it, and to the shelter it goes…
Even if my SO didn’t like my pets, I would be completely alarmed by the fact that he would even think to ask me to give one of them up for him. I would never tolerate that from a partner, and I would certainly never request it of mine, even if I hated the animal.
OP, you asked if he crossed a line, and for me, absolutely. We’re not talking about an allergy or a fear, we’re talking about a guy who doesn’t like dealing with pet hair. And sorry, but he’s “allowing” you to bring your dog? He’s “allowing” you to move in…? He sounds like an anal retentive control freak.
It sounds like you’re on board with geting rid of the cat for this guy. In my view, the only respectable thing to do here then would be to wait to move in with him until you’ve secured a new, happy home for your cat. If your Mom can’t take him, then find someone else(other than a shelter)- it’s the least you could do if you’re going to dump the animal you committed to taking care of for your new BF.
Post # 5
@Hausfrau: “Even if my SO didn’t like my pets, I would be completely alarmed by the fact that he would even think to ask me to give one of them up for him. I would never tolerate that from a partner, and I would certainly never request it of mine, even if I hated the animal.”
This. A pet is a lifelong commitment. A man is just a man, especially if he isn’t even your husband yet.
Post # 6
@Hausfrau: +1000 couldn’t ageee more. One of my cats can be a total pain in the butt but i love him more than anything. If my SO had said to get rid of my cat, SO would have very quickly found himself single. SO was never a cat person but loves animals in general but now loves “our” cats and calls them our furbabies, more importantly he loves how much i love my animals. SO will get out of bed a 3am to clean up cat sick so i can carry on sleeping… that’s true love.
Post # 7
@Hausfrau: Thank you. I probably wasn’t clear enough in my post. I would never even think of “dumping” my cat at a shelter. I take 100% responsibility for him. The only acceptable solution would be to ask my mom to take him because I trust her and if she couldn’t then my SO and I would have to discuss how badly he wants us to live together and look at other options (finding a bigger place, etc).
I was the one that worded it as “allowing” us to move in, not him. He’s not like that. He loves my dog and he is great with the other cat. I only meant that all of us living together would be an adjustment for him.
Post # 8
NightOwl27: Thanks for the clarification. I would certainly advocate for finding the best solution for all three of you, and it doesn’t sound like the cat would be particularly happy living with your SO anyway. If you can find him a loving home, then everybody wins.
I’ve got to be honest though, if a guy even broached the topic of me getting rid of an animal for him, the only situation that wouldn’t result in a one-way ticket to the curb for the dude would be one where the animal had bitten him or been violent with him.
MsBeer Rachel631 x1000
I just can’t get on board with someone who has the hubris the ask their partner to get rid of another living creature for them, especially if there’s a “we can’t take our relationship to the next level without getting rid of the car” carrot being dangled in front of you. Definitely a tough situation you’re in, but this is a major flag for me :/
Post # 9
I’m surprised that people would keep an animal that attacks people.
I love my pets and would do anything for them but it’s not ok to have a violent animal. If we want to go with the “member of the family” analogy, I wouldn’t live with my brother if he constantly attacked people.
Living together wouldn’t be good for your SO or the cat. I would try to rehome the cat in a quieter environment.
Post # 10
@Hausfrau: My cat has been violent towards him. He hasn’t bit him yet, but he has drawn blood from scratching him a few times. And it’s not because SO was antogonizing him in any way. My cat is just very aggressive and you can walk by him minding your own business and he will swipe at you. Just last night the cat was sleeping on my side of the bed at my feet and my SO got up to go to the bathroom and when he climbed back into the bed my cat attacked him. So I can see where my SO doesn’t want to feel like a prisoner in his own home worrying about getting attacked all the time.
But, I also am saddened that my cats behavior has created a situation where I feel like I may have to choose. We currently don’t have any plans to move in together, it probably wouldn’t happen for about 6-9 months and like I said, I would never give him up to a shelter.
Post # 11
Ho hum. Depends on whether your Mum would be happy to take the cat. It could work out. Personally though, I would simply turn around and say “the cat and I come as a package. Tough tiddles.”
DH actively disliked one of our cats… a hand reared little girl I found on a rubbish tip. She was terrified of everyone but me. Well, she has now been missing for the best part of 7 weeks. DH doesn’t particularly care. I am beside myself with worry and grief.
I can tell you this though… if he had asked me to get rid of her, I would simply have not have moved in with him. My issue would be that he clearly considered my animal a “lifestyle choice” rather than a family member. I wouldn’t say it was a red flag, necessarily, but it definitely shows an mismatch in values.
EDIT: How have you been trying to alter this cat’s behaviour? What techniques have you been using? Maybe the key is to alter the cat, not alter the man?
Post # 12
@Rachel631: I’ve had the cat for about 5 years now and he’s had aggressive behavior since day one (I took him in as a stray kitten). I haven’t found any successful ways to modify his behavior. If anyone has any tips on how to make a cat less aggressive I’d be open to trying them. He’s a very smart cat. Even now, my cat can be aggressive towards me (although I know him very well and know the signals and when to avoid him).
Post # 13
NightOwl27 “But, I also am saddened that my cats behavior has created a situation where I feel like I may have to choose.”
I’m not trying to trivialize the situation, but really? You’re blaming the cat for putting you in a situation where you feel like you have to choose? Your SO is a grown man, your cat is….a cat. If you decide to re-home the cat, own your decision and the fact that you’re doing so because it’s convenient for your (human) SO.
On the cat’s behavior- I’ve had destructive cats in the past and either they weren’t getting enough stimulation (toys, playtime, etc) or they eventually mellowed out with age. A squirt gun also worked wonders on the cat that attacked my feet every.single.time. I got under the covers.
ETA: Just saw your update, OP. Like I said, it’s a tough situation. If you were considering re-housing the cat independent of your SO’s suggestion, then obviously it’s for the best. Good luck!
Post # 14
@NightOwl27: Growing up, we had a cat that sounds very similar to yours – one minute she would be just sitting there and the next she would lash out with a claw. But she would do this with everyone, not just people she did not know.
Do you know why your cat is the way he is? Is he a tom cat or have you had him spayed? Was he in an accident or come from a bad home before? Our cat’s mother had a very similar temperament and because she had Millie (our cat) very young we think that maybe she didn’t know how to be a mother so left Millie to her own devices.
Do you do anything to reprimand him when he does attack or destruct? Of course, I don’t mean by hitting….but do you remove him, tell him ‘no’ or anything like that?
When we moved about 5 hours away from where we used to live my parents decided not to take her because, at 18 years old, they decided that the journey would be too much for her. We did bring our other cat, who is much younger though. Even though I was scared of Millie, I was really pleased they managed to find her a home with a family, I was afraid that with her attitude and temperament that no one would want her. And, if I was asked to give up a pet in a situation like yours then I would be worried that no one would have them.
Post # 15
@NightOwl27: OK. Firstly, is the cat neutered? Boy or girl cat?
I assume the cat is indoor because you are from the US. What is your local situation with regards to hazards etc? I always say this because many US bees have not considered it, but would it be practical and safe to give the cat some degree of outdoor access, if you have not already done so?
Also, is this aggression because the cat is nervous or scared, or because they are frustrated or territorial? The two causes have different solutions. If it is fear, you could try feliway or calmex. Fear is a much easier problem to solve than frustration.
Does the cat swipe at your bare feet at night? If so, wearing socks discourages this, for some reason.
Take a look at this page and see if you recognise any of the problems:
I do sympathise, because I have a cat who is semi-feral, and was pretty much that way when we got her at 8 weeks.
Post # 16
@Hausfrau: I can see where you are coming from and I do agree with you on some level. All of my pets were strays or adopted from a shelter. My cat however, even with me, his owner for 5 years who feeds him every day, still shows aggression towards sometimes. I’m not blaming it on the cat or saying the cats behavior is his fault, but it has created a situation. I guess I can see where my SO is coming from, but I agree with people that asking someone to give up a pet is asking a lot. If it was for any other reason OTHER than that he is aggressive and has attacked my SO then I would say absolutely not. Deal with it. But I guess this situation I am a little more understanding towards. I would also be uncomfortable bringing an animal into my home that I had to constantly be weary of.