A reported 22-year-old man on Reddit is asking if he’s wrong for bringing his dog to his members-only gym.
The anonymous Reddit user, GymAITADogThrow1, consulted the “Am I the A—–e” subreddit, an online forum where people vote on whether a person was the offender in a civil dispute, on Monday, May 22, where he explained that he brings his six-month-old puppy to the gym because he has separation anxiety.
GymAITADogThrow1 wrote that he decided to bring his puppy named Iron to his “larger public chain gym” a few weeks ago because he didn’t see a policy that prohibited dogs.
“I showed up with Iron, the front desk attendant saw [him] and didn’t say anything,” GymAITADogThrow1 wrote in his post.
He continued, “The gym employees see him all the time and I’ve even gotten positive feedback since I’ve started bringing him.”
GymAITADogThrow1 wrote that Iron has gotten to the point where he’s “reliable on voice command” in non-gym settings, but he needs to be leashed and kept close by to ensure that he doesn’t interrupt anyone’s workout.
“I brought Iron nearly every day and his behavior improved,” GymAITADogThrow1 recalled. “He would just sit there while I worked out, it was special to me to be able to work out with my puppy.”
Two weeks ago Iron got away from GymAITADogThrow1 and interrupted a stranger’s workout, according to the post.
“He was p—–. I quickly apologized and kept him near me,” GymAITADogThrow1. “A different random stranger comes up and tells me I should leave my f—— dog at home and dogs don’t belong in gyms.”
“I get defensive, but stay calm. I tell him to find a new gym if he has a problem because most people here like my dog coming with me,” he continued.
From the reported positive feedback he said he received from gym staff and most of his fellow gymgoers, GymAITADogThrow1 wrote that he believes his dog is welcome, but he’s questioning himself now because he’s received “mixed responses” from friends.
GymAITADogThrow1 has not disclosed in his post or comment replies whether Iron’s interruption posed a danger to the gym member.
Fox News Digital reached out to GymAITADogThrow1 for comment.
Reddit users overwhelmingly agreed that GymAITADogThrow1 is in the wrong for bringing his puppy to the gym.
“There’s no stated dog policy because the vast majority of people have the good sense not to bring a pet to the gym,” the post’s top commenter wrote, which received more than 15,400 upvotes.
“They probably don’t have a policy about not filling up the freeweight area with Jello, but OP here would see that as ‘there’s no policy against it, so I guess it’s cool that I do that too,’” a Reddit user replied, which earned over 5,700 upvotes.
“It’s also dangerous as hell, both for the dog and for other gym goers,” another Reddit user commented, which earned over 2,400 upvotes.
“Well trained or not, a free roaming dog is 100% unacceptable,” another user wrote.
“Not even mentioning what happens if Iron bites someone,” another commenter pointed out. “Spend more time with your dog and learn how to deal with puppy separation anxiety and socialize them in appropriate environments.”
Several Reddit users mentioned that pet owners who bring untrained animals into spaces that aren’t designed for pets have created unnecessary hardship for service animal owners, such as skepticism and discrimination.
“I have a service dog, and although allowed, I don’t bring him to the gym or [physical therapy], because the machines and people doing things with them, weights, rubber bands, balance balls, etc, could be a danger to him,” one Reddit user wrote. “He really doesn’t know what to watch out for.”
One Reddit user asked GymAITADogThrow1 to imagine the “chaos” that could ensue “if everybody who has a dog felt entitled to bring their dog with them to the gym,” to which GymAITADogThrow1 responded, “Sounds awesome [to be honest].”
Most Reddit users wrote that they’re shocked GymAITADogThrow1’s gym allowed him to enter with a non-service animal.
Some commenters theorized that the gym’s staff might be “too scared of a confrontation to say anything.”
Others wrote that it’s up to management to provide a “firm answer” even though most also don’t agree with GymAITADogThrow1.
“Hard to make a call without knowing their actual rules,” one Reddit user wrote.
While Reddit users disagree with dogs being present in gyms designed for humans, it appears there could be a growing number of dog owners who bring canine companions to gyms and fitness studios, according to photos and videos shared on social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
Viral posts on both platforms have shown dogs wandering or sitting still in gyms – sometimes with a leash and sometimes without.
Some videos show dog owners working out with their dogs, whether it be with a chest-strapped puppy carrier or lifting a fully-grown dog.
Dogs aren’t just being brought to the gym. Pet owners are also bringing dogs to restaurants, supermarkets, department stores, malls and workplaces, which has sparked debate in recent years along with the question of whether pets should be allowed on public transportation without crates.