Woman Backed For Pressing Charges Against Mother-In-Law: 'She Earned Them'

A mother-in-law was criticized online after it was revealed she surrendered her son and daughter-in-law's dog to a local pound.

The anonymous woman posted about her situation in Reddit's popular "Am I The A**hole" where it received more than 9,700 upvotes and 1,250 comments. The post can be found here.

Surrendering a Pet

When an individual surrenders a pet, they relinquish their ownership of the animal to a rescue or shelter. If the individual who surrendered the animal does not have official ownership, the true owner can legally challenge the surrender.

The American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) estimates that approximately 3.1 million dogs are put in shelters around the United States each year.

Woman praised for pressing charges on MIL
The woman said she was planning on pressing charges against her mother-in-law for surrendering her dog without permission. monkeybusinessimages/iStock

Of these surrendered animals, approximately 390,000 dogs—or nearly 13 percent—are euthanized each year due to several factors including shelter overcrowding.

The ASPCA reports that of these dogs that enter as strays, more than 700,000 are reunited with their owners.


In the post titled "WIBTA for pressing charges on my MIL after she drove my dog into another town to get rid of him?"m the Original Poster (OP) introduced herself as a 28-year-old woman whose 58-year-old mother-in-law likes to hangout in her garden.

She said this would be fine except that her mother-in-law is allergic to dogs and makes a fuss when the dog, D, is let into the garden while she is there.

"My husband doesn't mind having the dog use a grass-mat in the sunroom to use the restroom on, but it's really become a problem when the whole room smells like dog poop," the post read. "Many guests complain of the smell...to combat this, I just let my dog go outside to do his business."

The woman said she finally explained the situation to her mother-in-law, telling her she isn't welcome in the garden if D will be a health concern.

"She went INSANE," the post read. "She started screaming and yelling, saying that she's entitled to being in the garden. I just told her to leave."

'She Took My Dog'

The next day when she went to feed D, she was unable to find him. She called her husband who'd been out of town for the week, and he said he watched the security footage and saw D get in the car with his mom before speeding away.

The woman said she was "pissed" and immediately drove to her mother-in-law's house to find D, but he wasn't there.

"Apparently she TOOK MY DOG TO THE POUND," the post read. "This psycho stole my dog and drove it to a pound 30 minutes away. I called the pound and the police. The next thing I knew, I was being yelled at my all my relatives on social media, and I'm thinking of pressing charges."

In an update, the woman said she successfully located D and brought him back home.

Redditor Reactions

More than 1,250 users commented on the post, many slamming the woman's mother-in-law for stealing her dog from her house.

"You would not be the AH if you pressed charges. She earned them," one user commented. "You would not be the AH if you got a restraining order forcing your MIL to stay 200 yards away from your home. She earned that too."

"Press charges, and get a restraining order," another commented. "She is WAY past boundary setting. Also, it's 'strange' that the 30-minute drive to the pound with the dog in the car didn't give any allergy problems, but if the dog is peeing in the same garden as her it's unbearable?!?"

"She wilfully put your dog in danger. Press charges. Actions have consequences," another user commented.

Newsweek reached out to u/cassettecadet for comment.

In other viral Reddit posts, other users sought out advice for their differing views on pets.

One woman was praised for refusing to let her 18-year-old son bring a new dog into her home, and one man was backed for refusing to pay "puppy support" after his girlfriend's friend's dog got pregnant.

One man was recently praised in the same Reddit thread after he chose his cat over his girlfriend when she found out she was allergic.

If you have a similar family dilemma, let us know via life@newsweek.com. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.