I’ve met and started dating a young woman. We’ve been going out for close to a month now. Things seem to be getting serious. The only concern that I have now is that she is allergic to dogs. That poses a conundrum for me. I am the owner of a seven-year-old German Shepherd. I know that the line “a dog is a man’s best friend” is cliche, but in my case it is very appropriate. What can I do? I don’t want to lose an opportunity with this young woman, but I am also not willing to part with my dog.
The bond between a human being and a pet can be as strong as that had with a family member. You should not feel guilty for being concerned and having loyalty to your pet. However, it is also understandable that you want to forge a long-term relationship.
At the moment, you are aware of the potential that you have in this new relationship. There are no guarantees, as of yet, as to how far it will go. Even so, you must make preparations in the event that the relationship pans out.
To do this, you should not feel embarrassed to approach your partner with a conversation specifically about this topic. You should take an approach that at no time makes it seem like you are supplanting the interest of your partner over that of your dog. If anything, the conversation should revolve around your concerns for her allergies.
You may want to suggest setting up a doctor’s appointment to determine if there are any allergy medications that she can take to minimize her dog allergy. It also doesn’t hurt to have support material on hand which documents how being exposed slowly to a dog over time helps to minimize or eliminate dog allergies. You might also suggest demarcating your home into a doggie and doggie–free section.
In the majority of circumstances, dog allergies can be managed by one of the methods described the above. In very rare occasions will they be so intense that any proximity to a dog would be impossible.
In that latter case, you may have to consider whether or not your furry pal can become an outdoor-type dog. Otherwise, other options might include having a very close and trusted friend or family member adopt your pet. Of course, these are very extreme options and in the majority of the circumstances, the previously mentioned solutions should suffice.