Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Recovering mom doesn't want dog at home

By Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: For the past 2-1/2 years my son (now 9) has been asking for a dog. I've been saying no because while I like dogs, I prefer them in other people's houses.

I didn't want to take on the considerable expense and care for a dog.

Four months ago, I had a brain aneurysm. Thankfully, I am OK and recovering. However, during my recovery in the hospital I thought I was dying and that it would be a good idea for my son to have a dog to love and care for in the event that I did die.

I was coming off of anesthesia and on a lot of pain medication. I feel confident in saying that at the time, I was not in my right mind.

Unfortunately, my husband took me at my word and told our son I said yes ... and then we got this dog. I was home recovering when that happened, so I still wasn't quite able to put a stop to it. Now I'm saddled with a dog I don't want.

I am irritated, annoyed, and resentful. I work from home about 60 percent of the time, and so it falls on me to walk her twice a day. My husband/son do it the rest of the time.


I'm not happy about this. I would like to responsibly re-home her, but I don't know how to discuss this with my son. He loves this dog and I'm afraid that if I re-home her he will never forgive me.

I don't want to damage my relationship with him but I am unhappy with this dog in my house. Can you help me with a suggestion on how to approach this -- or how to cope?

-- Not-Woof

Dear Not-Woof: This is tricky because your health still seems to be somewhat shaky. But understand, too, that your near-death experience will have affected your son in profound and possibly traumatic ways. This dog may be important to him even beyond the normal child-dog devotion, because of what your family has been through. This dog is not expendable. Giving it away now could have a profound impact on your son.


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