My friend has organized a book club which meets once a month in her home to discuss the chosen book and to chose next month’s book. My friend has two small dogs, her daughter has one and brings it with her. There is no problem because all three of them get along fine and are adorable. One of her other friends has brought her small dog along two times and both times we have to deal with the upset dogs getting to know each other and the visiting dog urinates in the house. Last night, it urinated on my purse. The owner seemed undisturbed by this… “Oh naughty boy ha ha.” I cleaned my bag off the best I could and didn’t say anything not wanting to make my friend uncomfortable. If the woman brings that dog to another meeting should I say something, or just plead a headache and go home. How should I have handled it? 0130-15
If the hostess of the club meeting has no problems with visiting dogs in her home, there isn’t much you can do other than make sure your purse and any other belongings are stowed well above pee peeing levels. If the visiting dog is creating that much distraction from the club’s meetings, you could bring that topic up for discussion with the homeowner who happens to also be the club’s creator as well as hostess.
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Gross! It’s one thing for there to be animals welcome at a meeting, it’s another thing when a visiting animal urinates on something belonging to another guest. The smell doesn’t go away so easily. Pet stores have cleaners that deal with pet odors of this type, but you still might have an unusable purse.
The person who brought the dog and didn’t keep the dog from marking territory on your purse should at the very least offer to replace it.
Yes! Offer to replace it or maybe pay to have it professionally cleaned? Can that be done? I confess that I am not into purses/bags and have never bought one costing more than $50, so I don’t know if professional cleaning is an option, but I sure would not want to carry a bag smelling like dog pee!
I carry a Louis Vuitton on a good day and a Michael Kors on a slow day… It would have been a problem. A huge one. Everyone has their “thing” they waste money on, handbags are mine.
@Monkey’s Mommy: mine is perfume, I always have a couple of different scents on hand.
I also carry an expensive bag would would not appreciate a dog doing its business on the side of it.
I think she should have it cleaned and give the bill to the dog owner the next time the book club meets.
And leave my purse in the trunk of the car!
I would have shown my purse to the owner of the pee pee purse and asked her what she planned to do about it. There is no way I’d ever touch it again — even after a cleaning. If the woman could not control her urinating dog I would no longer be a member of this book club.
It is extremely bad manners to brush off a dog urinating in someone’s home as though that’s something dogs do. She should have been falling all over herself to apologize AND to offer to pay for cleaning or replacing it. But there’s nothing you can do now.
I would never let a dog into my home if it had a history of nervous peeing. That’s not acceptable. Either a dog is housetrained or it isn’t. Nor would I bring my dog into another person’s home if my dog had that issue.
Keep belongings where they can’t be gotten to by the dog. That’s really all you can do.
I would not bring an animal or a small child to a book club meeting. To bring a dog that is not house-trained, to allow it to urinate on someone’s property, and to laugh it off would mean that she would not be welcome in my home until she agreed to replace the purse and to leave the dog at home.
However, since it is not your home, I suggest wearing a fanny pack or asking the hostess to provide a secure place for purses. coats, etc.
I was at a meeting once at someone’s house, and she had an adorable little dog that cuddled up next to one of the men. At the end of the evening we discovered the dog had chewed a big hole in the man’s coat! The owner of the house was mortified, offered to pay for the repairs and/or a new coat. I don’t remember the outcome, but the man was extremely kind about the whole incident, and everyone laughed about it. I do believe the dog owner did make financal reparations, but I don’t remember.
I think, OP, you handled it well by not flying off the handle, but I think the dog owner definitely should have handled it better. A sincere apology and an acknowledgment that the dog just damaged your personal property at the very least, and an offer to pay for a cleaning would have been good.
I agree talking to the homeowner about it is a good idea. How does SHE feel about a dog peeing in her house? Maybe she’s afraid of saying something, and might feel better knowing she has someone on her side.
I’d tell the pee-pee dog owner that the urine smell isn’t coming out of my purse so I’ll need to have it professionally cleaned and how does she prefer to arrange payment for the cleaning cost? Perhaps if there are real consequences for her bringing her untrained dog with her, she’ll start leaving him at home.
If your purse is not an expensive one you could offer he the option of paying for cleaning or paying for replacement.
I also would be upfront with the host, ask whether “[name]’s dog which urinated on my purse” is going to be allowed back, and that if it is, then you will not be able to stay for that meeting .
I say this as a dog owner: These people are The Worst. You are always responsible for your dog’s behaviour, whether at home, on the street, or visiting in someone else’s home. You are also responsible, physically (as you are able) and financially, for anything they destroy. I would be so mortified if my dog used someone’s purse (or anything else) as a bathroom. Definitely keep your stuff out of the dog’s (bladder’s) reach and consider having a word with the dog owner directly. Putting the host in the middle could be awkward.
“Hey Sarah, could you do me a favour and keep Fido away from my stuff? Last week he peed on my purse, and now it’s ruined. I really don’t want that to happen again. Thanks for understanding.” This brings the behaviour to the owner’s attention, and makes it clear that you are definitely not happy about it.
Just like kids, dogs do not need to be taken everywhere we go…
The hostess might be feeling delicate to bar the not-house-trained dog as she and her daughter get their own dogs. But she can always put up restrictions that she welcomes well-behaved dogs, so that her other guests are not made uncomfortable. If a guest has to constantly keep an eye to make sure that the dog isn’t peeing on their belongings, I’d assume that it would distract them from the discussions in the book club. You could probably suggest that to the host.
A host’s dogs live in the host’s house. That doesn’t mean visitors should be allowed to bring their own dogs. ESPECIALLY dogs that pee on purses!
True! I should have specified that I meant that the host’s daughter is allowed to bring her dog. It might feel like she is being partial to her daughter, who is also another guest like anyone else. Hence, specifying that well-behaved dogs are welcome might be a good idea.
The peeing dog’s owner doesn’t seem to be interested in teaching her dog good behaviour if she laughs off at the dog peeing on OP’s purse. Dogs, like children, need to be taught manners. Any good parent or animal owner interested in teaching their baby (human or animal) would be mortified if their ward behaved badly – even if it is out of the parent’s control. The peeing-dog’s owner doesn’t really seem to care.
My general rule of thumb with my puppies is to ALWAYS be falling all over myself to apologize profusely and offer financial restitution for any unacceptable behavior my dogs happen to engage in. This may range from jumping up on someone to peeing in the house. It is just better to try to appease the person they unintentionally offended than for that person to make a federal case out of the matter. It is more for my dogs’ safety than for the person they offended. I take full responsibility for everything they do. I generally don’t ever take my dogs to a place I don’t already know is dog friendly. There are certain friends and family where my dogs would always be welcome and all others I refrain from just bringing them along. If you come to my home, and you aren’t a dog person – I would prevent them from bothering a person – but I wouldn’t put them outside or block them in another room. It is their home too.
We took in a beautiful stray cat last year, and Finley has been (for the most part) a very welcome addition to our family.
We have never had a pet before, and we love her to pieces.
She took to her litter boxes very well, but once in awhile will pee somewhere she is not supposed to.
Our sons gym bags are a target if they are left on the floor downstairs.
Anytime one of the kids friends stay over, I make sure they put their stuff in a closet, just in case.
One night, my oldest son’s girlfriend got stranded at our house when an unexpected ice storm hit fast and furious.
I didn’t want my son driving her home, and called her mom to make sure it was okay she stayed over.
Her mom agreed, and had a very scary drive home from work herself, and said her daughter and my son should stay put if it’s okay with my husband and I .
We went upstairs to bed, and I noticed her purse and a duffle bag she’d brought on the floor in the living room.
I mentioned that the cat might check out her things, and she should (or my son) put them away.
She did put the duffle bag in a closet, but not the purse, and of course, Finley peed on it.
I cleaned it for her, and offered her money to replace it.
She said “thanks for offering, but you DID tell me NOT to leave it on the floor….my fault!”
…And, of course, Finley’ s….who did not get any treats for a few days.
Poor Finley. 🙁 Give him double treats today. 😉
I’m pretty sure no one stuck to the “Bad Kitty! NO treats for you!” plan…..
I know I didn’t. 🙂
She sounds like a gracious young lady. Perhaps you taught your son to have good taste in women? 🙂
I wonder if the storm scared the cat? Bad weather definitely brings out nervous behavior in some of the dogs I have fostered.
Considering how most gym bags smell, no wonder kitty is confused. I cannot explain kitty’s interest in the purse, however.
Cat: There is not enough Febreze made to cover the smell of the boys gym bags, worse than the litter boxes.
The purse, however, puzzled us as well.
I was horrified, but nothing inside her purse was ruined, just the exterior, and guess what we gave her for Christmas??? 😉
FYI, deer hunters use a product which removes human scent from clothing. I know for a fact that it works on stinky teenaged boy sneakers because I used it.
@just4kicks: have you checked ingredients in Febreze? THOSE ARE the killers. :-/ >:/
White vinegar will take care of stinky clothes. However, if you have a front loader, there isn’t enough water to rinse out both, so you really have a nice cocktail…
She is a wonderful, goal driven young woman, she is a part of our family.
And while they are waaaaaayyyy too young to even think of marriage, she is the kind of woman I’d like to see him marry someday.
@Admin: Thanks for the tip, I will try it!
My oldest son joined the football team his freshman year, got a mild concussion, and stuck to baseball and basketball ball his other three high school years.
He went to football camp for a week during that summer, and it poured five out of the six days they were there.
He handed me his bag full of a week’s worth of damp, sweaty clothes when he got home, and I almost passed out…..I have NEVER smelled anything so awful in my life!
It’s funny how a sweet little baby can turn into someone whose used gym clothing smells like he has been rolling in road kill. Admin needs to tell us the name of the product used by deer hunters to remove the human smell from clothing.
@Cat: Yes, the sweet smelling baby I used to stand over his crib just so I could smell him has turned into a stinky (when he isn’t running up the water bill by showering three times a day!) teenager…..but I love him!!! 🙂
I adopted a very sweet pair of black kittens from the shelter last May and one of them went through a stage where he peed in boxes. Some of the boxes actually had contents. For a few months I was wondering if they sold Nature’s Miracle by the barrel.
@Law geek: my above comment about her being a wonderful young woman was in response to your very nice comment.
And…I hope so!
I’m not above giving a (sometimes not so) playful smack up the back of my teenage sons heads in response to rude comments about the female species.
As in “you have a sister, grandmother, and mother….how would you like if some one said that about one of us!”
Last mother’s day, the aforementioned girlfriend gave me a beautiful card with a hand written note about what a respectful young man we have raised.
I cherish it, made me cry when I opened it and she thought I was upset.
Now….the 16 year old middle son whose “stalker” ex-girlfriend is trying to get back with him in the worst way…..Well, I’m working on it! 😉
@noodle: we brought a barn cat that has lived outside our house for the past five years, in for the first time this year when the weather turned.
Jingles is quite old, and we were fearful she wouldn’t make it through the winter.
Unfortunately, Finley doesn’t like her, so they are separated.
Jingles is very docile and sweet, wouldn’t hurt a fly….Finley has quite the spunky personality…..funny how different they are, but we wouldn’t trade either for the world. 🙂
Your kittens sound adorable!
@hakayama: white vinegar you say?
That’s a new one, I’ll try it…..I’ll try ANYTHING….especially their baseball bags in the summer. The smell could, as my grandma used to say, “knock a buzzard off a sh@t wagon”.
Thanks for the tip!!!
I can’t imagine the hostess again welcoming a dog that urinated in her house! Getting it out of a purse is one thing, not that I’m brushing that off, but getting it out of carpet and carpet padding is quite a problem sometimes. Either way, I think OP would be fine to bring up the topic with the hostess, telling her that she will need a safe place to store her purse, coat, etc.
We’ve had doggy tales here before — why will people allow dogs to misbehave or take them places they don’t belong? We have two little dogs, and they are well-loved, but they are not taken everywhere with us nor do we allow them to bother anyone.
I’m also thinking stuff that might have been in the purse, which might not like any liquid poured on them. Wallet, cards, money, smartphone, printed bus tickets ( I currently have some I intend to use during weekend), Kindle, pricey make up one would have to replace… It accumulates quite quickly! Many of things I mentioned would either break (electronics) or be otherwise ruined by dog pee. I have maybe midpriced handbag (not a cheap “general” one, but not a super pricy), but I’d stil think that the stuff inside might still cost quite a lot more.
I see a bit of an undertone from the Admin of “OP isn’t the book-club host, and the host dictates the guest list, and the host decided that the friend with the incontinent dog is welcome to bring him, so the OP just needs to suck it up, or host the book club at her house.” I really don’t agree with that–I think the friend with the incontinent dog should either leave the dog at home, or house-train him, or put him in another room (or outside, if the weather is reasonable and there’s a fenced backyard), but not bring him to book club and allow him to damage other people’s property. Maybe there’s a reason why the OP can’t host the book club at her house–maybe her house is tiny, or she has roommates. Maybe she’s new to the club, and doesn’t feel comfortable suggesting that they move the meetings to the public library or something. Maybe they rotate hosting duties, and the OP does host book club sometimes. We don’t know….but I feel that the owner of the dog who made the mess is rude, not the OP.
But the point is that a person can only change themselves. That is, the OP can ask for changes but, in the end, the only changes the OP can make are her own. So, if the others do not amend the situation then it is up to OP to either suck it up at someone else’s house or to host it herself. Reality is not necessarily fair.
I’ve got two friends who live together and have several dogs, all misbehaving. They’ve done little to ever discipline or train them, and excuse their behavior as being normal dog behavior. If you try to correct their dogs when they bother you, the owners get all defensive. So far they’ve ruined the carpet by constant peeing and the owners had to have it replaced with hardwood floors. Their place stunk to the high heavens! At least now they keep them outside when a lot of people visit.
My In-laws at one time had three huge dogs who were up in age and peed and pooped all over the house.
The smell hit you like a punch in the face as soon as you walked in.
After a visit where one of my toddlers stepped in a puddle of urine, and of course I had everything in that damn diaper bag EXCEPT socks, we stopped going to their house, instead invited them over to ours.
My fault for not making sure I didn’t bring a change, but it was so gross, and I couldn’t take the chance of one of my kids getting sick…..or heaven forbid, finding a little brown nugget to play with.
I wonder if dogs and cats are the same in the inappropriate wetting department. A cat that I have inherited from a suddenly deceased friend, had peeing issues. He knew all about the litter box, and there were no emotionally stressful stimuli, but once in a while there were accidents, even before his prior human departed. A cat guy mentioned cystitis and, sure enough, the lower tract infection was treated, the “accidents” stopped.
I wonder if the visiting P pup may be afflicted.
Dogs are much harder to train, although both male cats and dogs are prone to marking territory. Puppies are particularly prone to peeing to express submission, so if you have a puppy visitor, it is best that they meet everyone, especially adult dogs, outside or on an easily cleaned floor. Although dogs get cystitis, they pee little bits frequently (just like when I have it!) It’s not very common in dogs though, because they drink a good bit of water, unlike cats.
It sounds to me that the animals are taking over the club. Agree with admin that there is not much you can do if the hostess chooses to allow these canine guests.
I’d be inclined to withdraw and find a new book discussion group. Or, perhaps, suggest rotating the meetings to each member’s home in turn?
Of course the pet owner should have offered to replace or clean the purse.
If that were my dog, or the hostess, I’d be horrified. Horrified! You really can’t control the dog, but you can offer apologies and restitution to the person whose purse was just peed on. The dog owner was wrong to just brush this off.
Senior year of HS I babysat and got a new gig sitting a 3 year old. He was great, the two small mixed breed dogs were not. They got my coat down and peed on it, and chewed on my week old cowboy boots that were in the closet. (I didn’t know they could get that closet door open, afterwards the parents said, oh yes, they get that open all the time). Well the coat was almost new and a down fill; the boots were almost new, in 70’s dollars nearly $200 worth and they didn’t offer to do anything about it, just laughed gently about ‘naughty little doggies’ when I mentioned the coat and boots newness. They could NOT understand why I would never sit for them again (I made $5 and lost $200?) It wasn’t quite enough for small claims or I would’ve went there.
The hostess should have apologized, whoever’s dog it was should have paid for the damage; and the dogs should maybe be confined to other parts of the house when guests are there no matter who they belong to.
We were fostering a puppy when one of our regular babysitters came over to sit. When we got back, the sitter shyly called our attention to the fact that the puppy had chewed through the strap of one of her flip-flops. Of course we said we would buy her a new pair. Even more embarrassed, she admitted that they were Rainbows, which cost $60.
Well, $60 was pretty dear to us, but of course we were responsible, so we immediately wrote her a check for the cost of the flip-flops.
I am an animal lover, but three or more dogs running around doesn’t sound fun. Distracting to the discussion, loud, hair everywhere. However, it’s up to the hostess. I also think the hostess is perfectly fine, if she likes, only allowing her dogs and her “grand-dog” in the house.
Fellow cat owners, my cats used to do the peeing thing, too. It’s largely stopped, but we have overnight visitors put their things in a closet. We ourselves have to keep our own suitcases where the cats can’t reach them.
What is it with cats and suitcases?? My old kitty never used to pee on anything inside. And he loved to sit in bags and boxes and briefcases. But the moment the suitcase appeared, pee city!
Same here! Maybe it’s the way suitcases smell like something far away that entices the cats to mark?
Maybe it’s like they have to mark their territory after smelling some strange smells?
Our dear old (now deceased) cat never urinated anywhere inappropriate, as long as he lived, except for one memorable time. My sister and BIL were over for the weekend, and that cat got up on my BIL’s chest in the middle of the night and urinated on HIM. I had to get clean sheets, change a bed, wash laundry in the middle of the night, and apologized all over myself. We could hardly believe the cat actually did it! My sister and BIL owned a cat they loved; it’s not like this cat sensed a cat hater or anything. We never figured that one out.
When a cat does that he or she has a beef with the person that they do it to. A smell or something they did that the cat took offense to…. but that is usually a deliberate like that. OR small chance the cat had something wrong. A trip to vet should have been first after that doings…
My ex and I once adopted a cat. She took to peeing on him almost every day. We took her to the vet, nothing was wrong. Eventually we learned she doesn’t drink stagnant water, and if we let her drink from the faucet she stopped peeing on him. I still have her to this day, and she still drinks from the faucet every day.
Cats are just weird.
Funny sidestory, my parents ended up getting a Siamese cat when they were childless (we had her until I was in kindergarten- VERY nervous and high maintenance!). She was always peeing on their bed when they were sleeping and they never did figure out why, but their vet instructed them to scream, pound the bed, and scare the jeebies out of the cat every time they saw her getting ready to pee on it- and they had to do it consistently if they wanted the cat to learn her lesson!
Of course, my dad (who is a light sleeper and wakes up pretty quickly) awoke one Saturday morning to find the cat climbing onto the bed to do her business, and my mom was in a deep sleep. My dad had no choice but to scare the living daylights out of both the cat and my mom! Of course, my mom is NOT a light sleeper and spent several minutes in a terrified, half-awake stupor trying to figure out what had just happened. The cat did eventually stop, though!!
I think the OP failed a bit in not saying anything at the time, but I totally understand being caught off guard in the moment. I do think OP should, upon seeing the woman with the urinating dog, politely but firmly approach and ask for reimbursement (either for the purse as a whole, or for the cleaning). Just a direct, “last meeting your dog urinated on my purse. I was in shock, and you pretty much blew it off. However I’m more calm now. I will need $XX from you to cover [replacement/cleaning]. Thanks.”
The hostess does not need to be involved. Even though this happened at her home, it can remain between the OP and the dog owner.
I do think it would fine to privately have a chat with the hostess about the situation. You can warn her you will be asking for reimbursement, or even just to show support to her, who might also feel quite put out and unsure what to do.
Eew. The dog owner should certainly have offered to pay for the purse – or, at the very least, apologized! If you really enjoy the book club, go and keep all personal items above tinkle level. However, if the dog shows up again, I wouldn’t blame you for taking your leave. If nothing else, it sounds like it’s pretty disruptive to have the unfamiliar dog there – how can you discuss literature while trying to rope in several nervous dogs and sponge “territory marks” off the carpet?
That’s terrible. Doesn’t admin have a saying about the world being someone’s ashtray? The world is this woman’s toilet. Which seems more disgusting.
How can anyone be that oblivious? Personally, I would ask for reimbursement for the purse.
If your friend is fine having a dog run around her house peeing, I think she’s a little odd. But, her house, her rules. I’d be so tempted to pee on that other woman’s purse, but I’m an unmannered heathen,
They make diapers for dogs. Mine wore one during her “period”, as to not make a mess wherever she went. If any pup of mine couldn’t hold it, and I was taking them somewhere, they’d be in a diaper. I feel like if I’m considerate enough to do that, then this woman could do it at least.
I’m not sure i entirely agree that “her house -her rules”. Yes, she is the hostess but it’s a group meeting – it’s not *her* meeting. I think the hostess can lay down rules, and i think the group can – and should – lay down rules, about dogs, about young children, about non-participating spouses, etc.
As for this particular situation – i agree with what Jewel suggested. Even though you missed a chance *in the moment* you can call her now and tell her that it’s not coming out and how does she want to handle this.
In the future – if you show up and Untrained Dog is there – you can make your excuses and leave. And I wouldn’t feign a headache – i would say that having the dog around is distracting/annoying/whatever. and if i were a member of that club – i would raise the issue to the group and get them to either ban the outside pets, or find another group.
I agree. I’m shocked that someone thinks it’s ok to let her dog piss on someone’s handbag. That’s disgusting, and if the owner did nothing, as the hostess I would have been straight there helping the OP to minimise the damage before we continued. The woman would not be allowed to bring her dog back. Where else is it going to wee next? On a person? What kind of hostess would even consider letting that happen again?
If the dog is there, I would leave immediately. This week, your handbag. Do you really want to find out what happens next?
Oh, and I would also contact her to say her dog ruined your handbag.
Keep your handbag out of the dogs’ reach. Have it professionally cleaned too.
Not an etiquette issue, but if the purse is not ruined and worth saving, definitely have it professionally cleaned. If not, your purse will become a target for any dog that marks territory. Even if you can’t smell or see the pee spot, dogs will.
We have a very sweet rescue dog who hs very occasionally marked things in the house or at new houses. He is house trained; this has nothing to do with his bladder control but is a way of expressing dominance and anxiety. He has never peed on my purse or anyone else’s, but if he did, I would apologize profusely and pay for cleaning. I also wouldn’t bring him around a whole bunch of new people to a house he hadn’t been to before.
Mostly, though, I wanted to say that there’s a difference between a dog having an accident and a dog purposely marking something. This dog is not incontinent; he marked that bag on purpose.
I admit I’ve never had a dog (I’m lazy. Cats are easier), but what would possess someone to bring a pet along to a book club reading??
@Callalilly: some females (rather than males), treat their doggies as accessories.
Then there are people that also take their kids everywhere.
If this is in the US, many states have statutes that impose a form of strict liability upon pet owners for damage and/or injuries that the pets inflict, so long as the claimant is not trespassing. If the location of the OP has a statute that supports the imposition of liability, she should at least mention the statute and request the cost of cleaning, replacement or compensation from the dog’s owner (but keep it civil, keep in mind that even if it’s a designer bag, you are only entitled to the value of the bag at the time of the accident.)
We once had a dog, who was house broken, potty trained, etc. However he LOVED one of the roommates. When the roommate brought her boyfriend home, Tuka-Nut (often called Tuka-Nutty) decided that the boyfriend was on his territory, so he peed on something of the roommate’s to mark her as his.
The owner of the pee-pee dog should have apologised and offered to pay for the cleaning or a repalcement purse. Mabye talk about it with the host in private? She might not like an untrained dog in the house. If this dog does attend another meeting and approaches you why not say what another poster said about keeping the dog away from you? If you don’t want to go anymore that is your choice. You could have said something to the owner at the time but that oppturninty has gone now.
I have a friend whose dog pees everywhere he goes. He’ll even pee at her house if she leaves plastic bags on the floor (apparently a moral objection on the dog’s part). We used to do weekend road trips together (sans dog – it’s a pug, he’s hyper, and there’s no way I’m having a hyper dog that won’t sit down in my car). But she’s now burned through any potential dog sitters she might have used. Dog has peed in little-used corners in EVERYONE’s homes, and no one will allow her dog over anymore. After the last time I allowed her dog in my car (on the PROMISE that she would hold him on her lap), he’s not allowed in my car ever again (can you guess who did NOT hold the dog on her lap?)
Bad dog owners rarely learn. I’d have a frank conversation with the home owner / host and tell her that you’re just not comfortable with the badly-behaved dog being there. It’s likely that the bad dog owner brings him with her so he won’t pee all over HER house in her absence.
You are all much better mannered than I am. I would have berated the dog owner and probably had a stiff conversation with the book club about not bringing any more pets unless they can control themselves. I also would have had my bag cleaned and given the owner the bill. If there is one thing I will not tolerate, it’s idiot dog owners.