He was a nice guy — smart, hot-ish (after one whiskey — and whatever, he even *kind of* looked like Zayn Malik — and I will always cheers to that), picked me up on a motorcycle on our second date and checked off enough of “the boxes” to warrant a third. But I never saw Motorcycle Zayn-esque Dude after Date #2. No, he didn’t ghost, I didn’t start seeing someone else, he didn’t move to NYC. It was just… that… he hated animals.
Okay, “HATED” is a strong word — but the truth is even worse. Zayn-ish was a scientist (whoa!), and during the inevitable “so what do you DO at work?” convo he revealed that he performed experiments on rats (oh…). My heart sank. And my Cool 2nd Date Chick Who Is Pretty Much Chill With Most Things demeanor completely crumbled.
“They’re raised just for this purpose,” he explained with a shrug. Logically, I knew he was doing important work that even the hippie in me could eventually justify, but I couldn’t help wondering, like, doesn’t it… aren’t you… how can you… sleep at night? “Well, I’m just not an animal person…”
Huh. So, um, you didn’t grow up begging your parents for a cat and settling for a fish? You didn’t become a vegetarian in your early 20s because you were dogsitting a special needs pup and realized you would, like, never eat him? You won’t go to the SPCA after brunch with me some Sunday a couple years into this thing and be like, “FINE yeah, totally let’s take home that three-legged mutt who’s ‘smiling at us’”??? Well, than it’s just not going to work out, bruh.
My example is an extreme one, but I’m not the only woman who has had to put a player out to pasture because he couldn’t roll with her four-legged love interests.
One of my coworkers (let’s call her… Kimberly) was dating a Perfect Guy — OR WAS HE?
He wore a well-tailored blue suit and took me to a Michelin-starred restaurant on our first date. He was funny, really good-looking and super thoughtful (after our first date, he made dinner reservations for my birthday, which was a month away, for three consecutive days in hopes that I’d be around for one of them so he could take me out). In other words, he seemed pretty perfect. [Editor’s Note: This guy also seems pretty intense.]
One date became two, then three. Eventually, we went from “dating” to “seeing each other” and the first time I visited his place, which looked straight out of a West Elm catalog, I realized that this picture-perfect man had one tragic flaw.
Inside his desirably-located apartment and perfectly-curated life, there was no a place for the scruffy love of my life, my mini schnauzer Isabelle. The guy just didn’t love dogs. He tolerated my pup at best, but I couldn’t picture him ever dog sitting when I was called out of town or even walking my dog (could his manicured fingers even bag dog poop? I don’t know. I never found out.). As a dog mom, Isabelle is the center of my world and inevitably things ended. He’s got a new girlfriend now, one he jetsets around the world with (we’re friends on Instagram, I know what’s up) and I’ve got Netflix, Seamless and my pup. And you know what? That’s just fine by me.
Another coworker shares a story that has earned her the nickname Must Love Fluffy Dogs around the office:
I was seeing this guy for a few months and was considering calling it off. When I was over at his house I was scrolling through my Instagram feed. I follow, like, 500 fluffy dogs and showed him a photo of my fave that popped up. He responded, “Oh, you like fluffy dogs? I’m more of a greyhound kind of guy.” And just like that, I decided it was over.
See? She really broke up with someone because he didn’t love fluffy dogs! All is fair in love and Insta pup breeds.
A couple weeks after our date, Zayn-ish Rat Guy texted me, “Hey, I ate some kale today… will that win me another date?” (I think a joke referencing the fact that I’m a vegetarian who kind of teared up when he told me he killed rats as a part-time gig). Although the joke was cute enough, unfortunately not even a high fiber, vegan diet could win me back. There are just too many fish in the sea — and a whole ton of them are cuddling dogs/cats in their Tinder profile pics.
Read more stories on Pet + Co!