Six Rules To Help You Manage Your Partner’s Pet

If you’re going to date a pet owner, you’re going to date the pet owner’s pet. Whether it be their sluggish thirteen year old Golden Retriever or their noisy cockatiel, the key to their heart is through their animal.

Just as you would respect your new mate and the boundaries of your new relationship, so should you respect their pets and how your partner raises them.

If you have just gotten into a courtship with someone who owns a pet, be weary of breaking these simple rules.

DON’T try to co-parent. If your partner doesn’t mind that her Chihuahua barks at shadows, then neither should you. Even if you’re a world-class animal trainer, their pet isn’t yours and won’t be until you have that very detailed and thought out (hopefully) conversation.

DON’T try to take its place. A person’s relationship with their pet is a beautiful thing. It’s also very delicate, special and hard earned. If your date reserves her Monday mornings for a long walk with her pup, ask to join her with some coffee, not to skip it altogether. If you spend the night at their house for the first time only to find that their oversized cat sleeps on the bed, work around the cat. Fair is fair and it was in that bed long before you.

DON”T make fun of them. Dating a cat lady? Does your boyfriend show pictures of his gerbil to everyone he meets? Does your partner dress her Chihuahua every morning, even though it’s a boy? This is not your place to judge. Chances are, you have some rituals with your pet that seem odd to them, so keep the teasing to a minimum.

DO involve the pet. Animals are very keen to people’s character. If you can get into the pet’s good graces, chances are their owner will follow suit. Find things you can do together that are pet friendly.

DO include your pet. For many singles, pets are like children. And if you want to see if your future is bright together, let your pets meet and see how they interact. If they don’t like each other at first, put in the effort to get them there. Not only will it be easier, it will be a great way to bring you two closer in your relationship.

DO make a grand gesture. So, maybe you don’t want to have their pet tag along on every date, but the effort is what counts. All your partner needs to know is that if you fall in love with them one day, you’ll love their pet, too. Celebrate their birthday, or buy them treats. Take them to the park by yourself. The little things always count, but when it comes to pets, sometimes the big things work even better.


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