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He's Trying To Get Rid Of My Dog

by Anonymous

We've been together almost a year, and just over a month ago we moved in together and that's pretty much when the trouble started. He behaves badly toward me and is verbally and emotionally abusive.

I don't need help to be sure. I feel like I'm fairly good at standing my ground and not being pulled into the fights that he would like to have. But, he keeps messing with the dog.

He feeds him rotten food then says we should get rid of him if he is not "house trained" when the dog throws up. He leaves the back door open at night and lets the dog wander off (our back yard is not really fully fenced). And he has engaged in a series of behaviors that appear to me as though he is trying to get the dog to bite him.

I've told him as much on several occasions and even laid it out for him very bluntly that if he continues these behaviors toward the dog, eventually the dog will bite him, and today he managed to do it. The dog snapped at him when he came to bed after he grabbed the dog by the head and slammed his face down a few times, on the bed.

He didn't hurt him but I know that this scares him. Then he grabbed the dog by the throat and forced face to face eye contact. This is also something that I've told him point blank is not a safe behavior with any dog. But he is very derisive and won't listen to me. Today the dog actually bit him. He needed a band aid and everything.

Next he started yelling so the neighbors could hear that the dog bit him for nothing. Which in my opinion is not really true. And then he claimed that he would kill the dog in the morning. So, I told him that he should move out then, if he can't live with the dog.

So, he said he was calling the police. I don't know if he is or if he isn't. I don't know if I should just pick up the dog and get the hell out of here. All I'm really sure of at the moment is that if I have to choose between the two, at least the dog is good to me.

I'm a little rattled. I may not be making that much sense. But I feel like he's escalating. And I'm getting to the point where I feel like working it out with him may not be possible since that would take both of us, and I seem to be the only one interested in changing the dynamic.

But even moreso, he's found my weak spot, and that really does worry me.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello, and thanks for telling your story here. I encourage you to trust your instincts on this. You said you asked him to move out, then you considered leaving with your dog. And you feel like he's escalating, and he's found your weak spot. I think you already know what you need to do.

Anyone who would mistreat an animal like that is an unfit person for an intimate relationship. His behavior is completely unacceptable, and I hope you can get very clear about that and never allow anyone you're with to mistreat a human being (including yourself) or an animal ever again.

Demand respect for yourself and everyone in your care. When someone mistreats a person or animal in your care, they are mistreating you.

I know you will do the right thing, and get yourself and your dog out of harm's way.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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