Help! My Sister Is Telling My Family I’m a Monster for Putting Down My Dog.

Help! My Sister Is Telling My Family I’m a Monster for Putting Down My Dog.


My wife and I recently made the difficult decision to put our dog Luna down. We adopted her from a shelter during the worst of COVID. Within a couple of months, it was clear that the information they had given us about her was euphemistic at best, and outright dishonest at worst. Luna could be a normal, nice dog at times, but she had serious issues with aggression toward all other dogs and many humans. We tried very hard for over a year to make things work with her, at great financial and mental cost. We tried trainers and a behaviorist and followed their instructions exactly, but there was no meaningful improvement. Walks and trips outside to go potty were full of stress and anxiety due to her frequent attempts to attack others. Even in our own home, we were walking on eggshells to avoid triggering her.

The final straw was when we were on a walk and Luna dragged me (a fit adult man) to the ground trying to get at a family walking their dog across the street. I got pretty badly scraped up but was able (barely) to restrain her. We realized that it was only a matter of time before she hurt someone. After carefully considering all our options, we ultimately decided that behavioral euthanasia was the only responsible choice.

My sister, Amanda, is appalled that we did this. In the week leading up to the euthanasia, she was bombarding me with texts and calls begging me to reconsider, guilt-tripping me, sending me ideas for how to fix Luna, and offering to find her another home. The day of, she texted me that she was “disappointed and sickened” by what we were doing. Since then, she’s made numerous posts on social media that were clearly directed at us (stuff about how a pet is a commitment for life, a real pet parent doesn’t ever give up, etc.). Multiple relatives told me she trashed us directly to them.

I need to make a decision about buying plane tickets to go home for the holidays. I don’t want to deal with Amanda in person carrying on the way she has been. I can ask if she’s going to keep this up over the holidays, but I don’t know if I can even believe her if she says no. I’m inclined to just not go if she’s going, but I don’t want to put my parents in an awkward position where they feel as if they have to choose between us. Also, my grandma is getting old, and I don’t want to miss out on time with her. How do I handle this?

 Not a Monster

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