My new boyfriend loves dogs, and I have cats. Not only that, but he is allergic to cats. Every time he comes over, I have to vacuum carefully, remove all cat dander from the furniture and bedding, and hide the cats in the garage until he leaves. My cats are like family. I really don’t think it is fair that the cats have to stay in the garage while he is here. I tell him to pop a Benadryl and deal with it, but then he threatens to break up. And, if that weren’t bad enough, when I go over to his place, he insists on his giant Great Dane joining us in the bedroom, while we make love. There’s something disconcerting about having a big dog sitting in the corner, licking his private parts and panting while we are in the throes of passionate sex? What should I do?
Cat Lover in the Ozarks
Dear Cat Lover:
This is a common problem, especially for older people who are dating again after divorce or the death of a spouse. If your boyfriend refuses to remove the dog, I’d remove the boyfriend from my life. I can understand him not wanting to “pop a Benadryl,” but really, what does he think makes him so special? If you had a child, say with Downs syndrome, and he was turned off by that child and insisted he or she be out of the house while he visits, what would you do? Exactly. You’d tell him to get out and stay out. Here’s a suggestion: instead of throwing the big baby out with the bathwater, insist that he spring for a hotel room when you want to get intimate. That way, nobody has to do anything different, the pets stay at home, and he can pay for the privilege. And while you are there, if he goes for it, take a black light and point out all the love juice left behind by others on the bedding. I’m sure he will take another look at all of this with a “different light.” But honey, no man is worth changing your life for. And your principles. Tell him to shape up or ship out.