Vindictive MIL Tries To Have Family's Dog Taken Away & Put Down as 'Revenge'

black lab
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When people say "I do," they often know they're signing up for a lifetime of butting heads with their in-laws. But a simple, everyday conflict can easily escalate to an event that's as gasp-worthy as it is grounds to end the relationship outright. That's what appears to have happened to one woman who took to the JUSTNOMIL subreddit to lament a heartbreaking incident: Her mother-in-law had their family dog taken away and possibly put to sleep.  

  • The original poster (OP) explained that her family has a "gorgeous 2-year-old staffy x lab."

    The UK-based family has raised the dog since she was 8 weeks old. "She is my daughter's best friend, and she is like mine and hubby's second child," the OP noted.

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  • The OP said she also happens to have a MIL who has blamed her for a variety of her own issues.

    She has pointed the finger at the OP for "the breakdown her marriage, the breakdown of her relationship with her son and has turned his entire family against us," according to the Redditor. Judging from a previous thread, there also appears to be additional prior drama revolving on the OP being pregnant, which has led the MIL to feel estranged.

    The situation recently reached a fever pitch. "For two days, the calls had stopped and I stupidly thought that everything was calming down," wrote the OP. "Oh boy, how wrong I was."

  • On the day the OP's post went live, she says that she got a visit from law enforcement.

    "We had a knock at the door from the police saying we had an illegal dog on the premises and they needed to inspect it," the OP explained. "They were told we had a Pit Bull and needed to inspect the dog."

    The Redditor lives in the UK where there is a ban on pit bulls, and police had arrived to enforce it. "My husband let them in and Zara (the dog) ran straight up to them, tail wagging and so happy to meet new people," the OP explained. "The officers took her measurements -- which she happily let them do -- and they said her measurements and appearance made were found to be similar to that of a Pit Bull, and they needed to take her away."

  • The OP and her father-in-law started arguing with the policemen, explaining that the dog is a lab mix.

    "They asked us to give them a lead so they could take her for tests," the OP wrote. "They said if she was found to be an illegal breed, they would have to put her to sleep."

  • The family dog was eventually taken away, according to the Redditor.

    "We are now facing a court battle to get her back," the OP shared. 

    It turns out her MIL was behind the whole operation. "A few hours after they took her, my husband got a text from MIL saying, 'U take my grandbaby, I take ur dog,'" according to the OP. "My husband didn't respond but went into a complete rage and stupidly broke his phone in the process."

    The bottom line for her: "I feel absolutely heartbroken and am terrified they will kill our poor baby for absolutely no reason." She turned it over to the Reddit community, asking, "Does anyone have any advice on how we can get our dog back?"

  • JUSTNOMIL commenters chimed in to mostly defend the OP. 

    "How dare she," one commenter wrote. "Call your vet, get all appropriate documentation on your dog’s temperament. Does he/she have any friends at the local pet park? Have you boarded him or her? I'm so, so sorry that she did this to you. I'd apply for a restraining order to keep you and your family safe. My heart is breaking."

    Another advised, "Get a lawyer ASAP, get vet involved. But most of all go public -- Facebook, TV tell your story, go nuclear. The more attention, the better to ensure that no harm comes to your dog. Get animal rights groups involved. Basically create as much noise as you can, get the internet keyboard warriors to do their thing. So authorities face public ridicule, and do not attempt to rush anything. Make your MIL, understand the true meaning of escalating things."

     A third asked, "Can you ask your vet for their professional opinion of Zara’s temperament? Can they vouch for her being a lab mix? As for your MIL, hopefully you, DH and DD never see her or speak to her again. She can't be rewarded for killing an innocent dog."

  • The OP explained that the best thing the family can think to is lawyer up, but money is tight.

    "We're looking into lawyers, but with the baby on the way we're struggling to find one in our budget," she explained further down in the comments. "We're just trying to gather as much evidence that she isn’t a Pit Bull as possible."

  • It sounds like the OP is on the right track. 

    As one Redditor put it, it sounds like the MIL "is willing to cause all sorts of legal and emotional trouble just because she wants others to hurt more than she does."

    Here's hoping the OP is able to find a solution that will prevent everyone in this situation from more hurt -- including her pup.