Q: A few years ago, my mom came for a visit and brought her dog who proceeded to ‘go’ on our brand new carpet which upset me very much. She now has a new puppy and wants to stay with us for Thanksgiving and bring it. We’re living in another brand new home with new carpet and wood floors. I told her I’m not comfortable with that. The puppy will terrorize our cats and I don’t want to have the puppy ‘problems’ we had last time. She says she respects my boundaries but also has obligations to her puppy and can’t find a puppy sitter. I don’t know what to say.
A: Well, say no if this is a critical issue for you. Or, if you have a basement and can set up a comfortable space for the puppy there, you might consider that, or consider having an appropriately sized crate for the dog to stay in when he isn’t being walked outside. You can discuss these options with your mom, or, although it might be late, suggest she investigate a good kennel near her home where the dog can board for her visit. This may be the most unlikely choice, since the dog is a puppy and some kennels have age requirements, but in that case, it may be that her vet would board the puppy for the duration. Some vets do accept a limited number of pets and board them. If none of that works that you are most concerned for your new house, then you have to tell your mom you are sorry, but she can’t visit. It all depends on your own priorities; it is not really a matter of manners.