Made out to be the bad guy!
My wife has 4 adult children from her previous marriages/relationships. Those adult children now have children of their own. I was not around these adult children during my wife's and my courtship period, so they don't know that much about me. I, on the other hand, have no parenting experience, as I never had kids. My wife and I married later in our lives, when I was in my 50's and her in her late 40's.
My wife and I have a large home with 3 adult cats. We've never had our cats around any other animals, so they've never gotten used to being around dogs, etc. My wife's daughter, who lives about 4 hours away, wants to come and visit my wife and some of the other family members who live in our area, which is just fine. She has a 10 y/o daughter and a 13 year old son, who will come with her. In the past, this daughter and her children, both the boy and girl, have stayed at our house, which has been great, since we have plenty of room. Lately, the 10 y/o daughter got an "emotional support" dog (a mixed/pit bull breed), and wants to bring this dog to our house and have it inside, with our cats. We tried this arrangement once before, and had to lock our 3 cats in our bedroom, with their litter box, food bowls and water fountain in our bathroom. When the dog first arrived, it made itself "at home" and ate the cats' food and slobbered in and drank out of the cats' water fountain, making it untenable for our cats to drink out of. The entire visit had our poor cats on edge and constantly hissing and spitting at the dog, who was trying to "play" with them. They, of course, weren't having it!! At the end of that previous visit, my wife and I both agreed that the dog would NOT be welcomed inside our house on subsequent visits, due to the stress it put on our cats and the fact that neither the daughter or granddaughter kept an eye on the dog, or tried to supervise it while it was here. It is NOT obedience trained and is just out of the puppy stage and aggravates the cats, which is a natural thing and to be expected. It just wasn't a good arrangement and was not good for our cats. This is their home, not the dog's, and they should not have to be intimidated or stressed out in it. I wouldn't dream of taking my cats to their house and expect them to accomodate them over their dogs.
My wife's daughter now wants to visit us again and, again, she wants to bring this dog into our house. I drew the line, expecting my wife to back me up on this and let her daughter know that the granddaughter's dog was not welcomed in our house, due to the presence of our cats. The daughter and granddaughter are, of course, more than welcomed here......just NOT the dog. My wife is now telling me that her adult children have discussed this situation and now they all feel that they are not welcomed at our house. That is NOT the situation. It is their dogs/animals that are not welcomed INSIDE our house!! My wife is now acting like I am in the wrong for not agreeing to let these adult children and their children bring their dog(s) into our home and that it is MY fault for making them feel, therefore, unwelcomed at our house. To tell you the truth, I feel like my wife and her children are trying to manipulate the situation and cause me to reverse my decision to not allow their animals into our home. I'm not going to reverse my decision, though, because I feel that my first obligation, under the circumstances I stated above, is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our 3 cats. Frankly, I'm at a loss to understand why and how these adult children feel that it is okay to take for granted that their animals should be welcomed, without invitation or question, inside our home. I just feel that their sense of "entitlement" to my home is just plain rude and inconsiderate.
Am I wrong for feeling as I do and drawing the line against having these animals in my home?? Does anyone else but me see the reaction of these adult children to my refusal to welcome their animal into my home as an attempted guilt trip on me, or a tool of manipulation of the situation?? Please, I need some feedback here. What are some reasonable ways of handling this situation??
Thank you, in advance!!!!