He hates my cat: The sequel

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This is actually my first time here. I came after googling a problem of my own that I wasn't sure how to deal with.

My boyfriend and I have been together long-distance for 2.5 years, and he has been staying with me temporarily for a little over a month. I have two cats and while he LOVES one of them, he hates the other. Previously, he had told me I had to get rid of this cat or we could not move in together in the future. Now he says he can deal with him (I had my cats before I met him). During his stay however, he would continuously bother this cat with the water spray and loud noises, and this morning he locked the cat in the bathroom for a timeout. When I said I was going to let him out, he threatened he would leave if I left him out.

This isn't the first time he threatened "leaving" and I am really sick of him always making me "choose." I asked him what the cat did, and he said he growled at him, which was disrespectful. Apart from this I really enjoy his company and we get along very well. It is not that he hates cats, but his behavior towards this one cat troubles me. I am not sure how to talk to him about this, as I don't want to give ultimatum (as he frequently does).

– Growling


I assume you googled, found this cat letter from January, and decided we're the experts on pet-related relationship drama.

We can try to be.

My opinion (and I need to reiterate that I am allergic to cats ... and most animals) is that you shouldn't fall in love with someone and expect to be with them unless you can accept their pets. This man wants you – with edits. That doesn't work.

He's also abusive to your cat, which is troubling! It sounds like he's trying to persuade you to get rid of the cat by making you fear for his (the cat's) safety, and that's … well, it's upsetting, to be honest.

If you're very in love with this man and you want to try to figure out some way to make this work, I would suggest some couples counseling. It's a good place to talk about your concerns about this behavior, and about how to compromise without ultimatums and threats.

But if all you can say about him after more than two years together is that he's pleasant company, I want you to think about whether he's the partner you want for the future. Your cat isn't the last loved one who's going to make him uncomfortable. The cat won't be the last strong personality to growl at him. You need someone who knows how to deal – or, at the very least, how to talk about making it work.

Your gut tells you this behavior is a red flag. Don't ignore it.

– Meredith

Readers? Please help because again, I have no pets. But I love and respect other people's pets.