Author Topic: We Don't Want a Pet  (Read 9326 times)

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StuffedGrapeLeaves

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We Don't Want a Pet
« on: September 05, 2012, 12:42:39 PM »
I have a friend Lana who loves animals.  She volunteers for the ASPCA and has two cats and two dogs.  She also thinks that everyone should have pets.  I have no desire to have a pet.  I have nothing against animals, but I don't want one.  I'm allergic to most of them, DH travels a lot so the responsibility would mostly fall on me, and we also travel once or twice a month, which would mean either kenneling or finding someone to take care of our pet while we are gone. 

Lana had asked before why we didn't have pets.  Instead of getting into all the reasons, I told her that our apartment was too small (I realize in hindsight this was probably a bad idea, but it was the easiest way to get her to stop talking about it).

We recently moved to a house.  Lana was invited along with a group of our mutual friends to a housewarming party.  She asked again when we were getting a pet.  I bean-dipped her, but she would not drop the subject.  She even went up to DS (who's three) and told him that wouldn't it be nice to have a dog or a cat.  For the next week DS wanted to know if we were getting a cat or a dog, but fortunately forgot about it after a week of DH and me constantly telling him no. 

From my experience with her, I wouldn't put it past her to continue bothering us about it.  Any ideas on what to say?  Should I bother raising it with her now or wait until the next time she brings it up?  She's part of a close group of friends who we socialize with on a semi-regular basis, and I really want her to stop talking about it, especially in front of DS. 

acicularis

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2012, 12:50:26 PM »
I wouldn't try too hard to give reasons, even allergies, because she might just see that as an opportunity to argue why they aren't valid.

I might just say "An animal is a big responsibility, and we're not willing to take that on right now."

Seriously, if she volunteers for the ASPCA, she should know that many people do not take that responsibility seriously enough. Too many people get pets on a whim and don't provide appropriate care for them.

siamesecat2965

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2012, 12:54:55 PM »
I would just repeat over and over that you aren't able to take on the responsibility of a pet. And bean dip/

I myself would love to have a dog, but a. animals aren't allowed in my apt complex and b. I'm not home enough to properly care for one.  So even if I could have one, I wouldn't since it wouldn't be fair to them.

Judah

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2012, 12:55:14 PM »
"I don't want a pet." Period. End of story.  Keep repeating it. You really don't need any more explanation than that. If she persists add, "I've told you I don't want a pet. Why would you try to push a living being on someone who doesn't want the responsibility of one? Please don't bring this subject up again."
Ask for what you want. Let's be clear on this one:
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Wittyone

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2012, 12:57:37 PM »
I agree with Judah.  Next time she brings it up give a dead stare and say, "We don't want a pet."  Then change the subject.  Repeat anytime she brings it up.  You don't need to give reasons or excuses or justify your not wanting a pet.  Just state it outright, it leaves her no room for argument.
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Chickadee

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2012, 12:57:53 PM »
I have nothing against animals, but I don't want one.  I'm allergic to most of them, DH travels a lot so the responsibility would mostly fall on me, and we also travel once or twice a month, which would mean either kenneling or finding someone to take care of our pet while we are gone. 

You should say the above to her, from your OP. I would also add that she is not to mention anything to your son about getting a pet. She was out of line with that remark.

Judah

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2012, 01:04:38 PM »
I have nothing against animals, but I don't want one.  I'm allergic to most of them, DH travels a lot so the responsibility would mostly fall on me, and we also travel once or twice a month, which would mean either kenneling or finding someone to take care of our pet while we are gone. 

You should say the above to her, from your OP. I would also add that she is not to mention anything to your son about getting a pet. She was out of line with that remark.

I disagree. I don't think any reasons other than, "I don't want one" should be given. Reasons can and will be argued with, but "I don't want one" really can't be argued with.
Ask for what you want. Let's be clear on this one:
Subtle hints don't work.
Strong hints don't work.
Really obvious hints don't work.
Just say it!

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PennyandPleased

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2012, 01:05:38 PM »
Seriously, if she volunteers for the ASPCA, she should know that many people do not take that responsibility seriously enough. Too many people get pets on a whim and don't provide appropriate care for them.

I think you should use the above quote from "acicularis".

Lana: CRUD MONKEYS! you have a house and a yard now, you need a dog!

You: We do not have the time or ability to take on the huge responsibility of a pet.  You of all people should know that many people do not take that responsibility seriously enough and too many people get pets on a whim and don't provide appropriate care for them. Why would push an animal on anyone who says they can't care for one? I'm sure the ASPCA would not appreciate that at all. /bean dip/

Seriously if she's pushing animals on you I bet she pushes then on other people and that's not what a responsible ASPCA worker should be doing!


Hmmmmm

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2012, 01:06:11 PM »
POD to the other posters.  You need to correct the impression she has about why you didn't already have one.  Since you stated the reason you didn't have one was space, it was understandable that she'd assume you'd be getting one since you now have space. 

"We don't want a pet.  It's not a responsibility I want to deal with.  Please don't bring it up to son as I don't want him to become confused."

If she asks why you don't want a pet, just repeat I don't want the responsbility.

Chickadee

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2012, 01:06:30 PM »
I have nothing against animals, but I don't want one.  I'm allergic to most of them, DH travels a lot so the responsibility would mostly fall on me, and we also travel once or twice a month, which would mean either kenneling or finding someone to take care of our pet while we are gone. 

You should say the above to her, from your OP. I would also add that she is not to mention anything to your son about getting a pet. She was out of line with that remark.

I disagree. I don't think any reasons other than, "I don't want one" should be given. Reasons can and will be argued with, but "I don't want one" really can't be argued with.

Good point.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2012, 01:30:42 PM »
"An animal is a big responsibility, and we're not willing to take that on right now."

I like this with my slight modification.  You don't want to leave the door open or this woman is liable to keep asking!
I have CDO.  It is like OCD but with the letters in alphabetical order, as they should be.
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Kiara

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2012, 02:05:05 PM »
Seriously, if she volunteers for the ASPCA, she should know that many people do not take that responsibility seriously enough. Too many people get pets on a whim and don't provide appropriate care for them.

*snip*

Seriously if she's pushing animals on you I bet she pushes then on other people and that's not what a responsible ASPCA worker should be doing!

Good gravy, YES.  I'm here banging my head into the desk over the conflict in thought here.  If someone says they don't want a pet, you take them at their word!  To do otherwise is to set up what we used to call the "revolving door" at the shelter.

StuffedGrapeLeaves

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2012, 02:11:49 PM »
Thank you for all the responses!  I will definitely keep these in mind.

That's a very good point about the ASPCA - I didn't think about that.  I know in general she's very pushy about pets.  She thinks everyone should get one, and should get one from a shelter.  She had gotten upset at a friend of hers for getting a purebreed. 

Moray

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2012, 03:33:15 PM »
I am a devoted animal lover with 5 cats. I volunteer at local shelters and spay & neuter clinics. I have fostered injured animals...I still think your friend is nuts for trying to push animals on someone who doesn't want one and is wise enough to know that a pet wouldn't be a good fit for their lifestyle.

I agree with PPs who say you're better off not giving reasons; it'll only give her something to debate about or help you "overcome". I would, however, recommend asking her --point blank-- why she's not respecting your wishes on the matter.
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AnnaJ

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Re: We Don't Want a Pet
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2012, 03:39:08 PM »
Unless Lana is a total pet pusher (which is possible), the problem as you say may have been in giving the excuse of too little space.  As a pet lover I might assume that means that you really want a pet but just don't have enough space for one. 

So you move into a house...more space, a pet, yea!

I think it's only fair to be honest with Lana - no, we' don't want a pet.  You can add an explanation, if you like, but just make the point that it's your choice, not circumstances, that make you say no.

If she continues to press the point you can be more abrupt, but I think it's reasonable to give her a chance to be polite and drop the subject on her own.