Emotional support dog and room damage

We have hundreds of great interactions with guests but once in a while we have a problem and this last guest was one. Now I have to ask for money through the resolution center and I hate it. Here’s what happened.
Now I have to ask for money through the resolution center and I hate it. Here’s what happened.

We have a no pet policy. We have a neurotic cat who goes nuts around other animals but is fine otherwise, with humans. This guest did an instant booking and said she had an emotional support dog. I know about Airbnb‘s policy with regard to support animals so we let it go but explained that the dog would need to stay in the room because of our cats and that we give 100% reimbursement if she wants to find another Airbnb. There are many in our area. She said it would be no problem with the dog.

To make a long story short, she left her dog alone in the bedroom the first day for nine hours when she went to work. We talk to her about it and glanced in the room when she came home. It was peeing on pads and had pooped on the rug, which she cleaned up. On the second day, we asked her to leave the dog in our large bathroom so it wouldn’t soil the carpet more in the guestroom. The dog scratched at the door all day and howLed. It was agonizing for me. I ended up texting her and asking if I could take the dog outside, which I did.

Damage done? First, he ate my glasses, and she gave me money to replace them. Second, she used some bleach spray to clean the poop spot and now there is a big white blotch in the middle of our beige carpet.

We gave her a pretty negative review and said we would never host her again and we gave private feedback that she could take her emotional support animal to work with her, perhaps. We told her we would be submitting a claim about the spot on the carpet.

It will probably cost us about $600 to replace the carpet and we are going to ask her for about 150.

I also called Airbnb and said I wanted an excemption for our Airbnb so that we don’t have to accept support animals because of our crazy old cat. They are granting us an exemption.


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Well that is good news. Hopefully miss emotionally unstable, yet stable enough to go to work without the dog will pay up. I would have said no, sorry, ain’t gonna happen and accepted the penalty from Air. And speaking of penalty for cancellation it seems they have lightened up on them. I just got one of those, hey suzy is coming emails and happened to click the link about cancellations and it is not as bad as it used to be.
No automatic loss of superhost, fine is not set in stone. Here is the link:


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@Rachael52, if this situation ever arises again with an Airbnb guest (someone brings an emotional support or service animal), I’ll be interested to know if Airbnb honors the exemption they’ve given you.


It’s really important for hosts to know that if a guest brings an assistance animal (service or emotional support) that they are not allowed to leave it alone in the home at all. If you get a request or an IB that mentions an emotional support animal, be sure to remind your guest of this policy. It will surely weed out those that are not legit. And OP could have ejected her guest for leaving the dog. We are actually pet friendly but require pre-approval for dogs and I very much resent people passing off their pets as support animals. Twice I’ve been told by guests that they were bringing an ESA and both times I said, “wonderful. I’m assuming you won’t be leaving it alone whatsoever as per the policy ?” and both times these guests canceled immediately. FWIW.



They may have said they were granting you an “exemption” but in fact, if you host in your home, you have always been allowed to not accept ESAs and even service dogs if there are issues of allergies or safety.
And this woman was falsely claiming her dog as ESA- how does the dog provide her with emotional support if it’s left alone all day while she’s at work, freaking out and doing damage to your home, no less.


And you should charge her more than $150 for the $600 carpet replacement unless the carpet was due to be changed out soon anyway. This “pee pad” business is absurd.
ESA and service animals must be housebroken, that’s part of the deal. Housebroken doesn’t mean the dog pees on a pad in the house and poops on the floor. I’d have booted this woman out after the first day.


Great heads-up! Thank you! I will be sure to use this when we get such a booking.

Seriously, what is wrong with some people? This is just cruel. Of course the poor dog was miserable and went to the bathroom on the floor. It had no choice.

No way would I have allowed this. I’d have been on the phone to her as soon as I realized she left the dog the first day.

Thank you for this.


This “emotional support dog” is emotionally abused by its owner. This woman shouldn’t even be allowed to have a dog, let alone leave it for 9 hours closed up in a room in someone else’s home.


Airbnb won’t pay for pet damage so be careful how you word the request for damage.


didn’t take an emotional support dog to work = not really an emotional support dog.


I want to thank this poster and all the other posters who have replied to my original post. I am learning a lot from your comments. I see clearly now that this woman was not a responsible pet owner and that this poor dog was not really an emotional support dog for her.


That is really weird, that they won’t pay for pet damage. I think it’s going to be hard for me to word this in the resolution center if I have to omit the fact that the woman had a dog. I’ll have to think about that. I’m gonna try to take care of this today.

Though we know this poor dog was not really an ESA, I think you need to push the issue with AirBnB to get the carpet replaced. The dog is supposedly an ESA and Air should honor the host guarantee. I’m not sure if the host guarantee actually does apply to ESAs, but if Air requires we host them, we must fight any claim ESAs are “pets” when there is damage to our homes.


In the maddening way Airbnb operates, they won’t pay for pet damage but they may pay for ESA damage. I’m sure you read the entire article that JJD posted but you missed this:

So go ahead and make your claim. Best of luck and do update us. You won’t be able to get replacement cost for the carpet (unless it was new) because it was used carpet. But you certainly should have to get something.

I know you are up north but if you could put tile or vinyl in the room with throw rugs I would do that. (And if I could afford it I’d have a heated floor!)


Irresponsible pet owner. You need to invent an allergy, fast. No, I don’t like lying, either. It’s self protection.


And @Rachael52 , hopefully they will honor this but we all know sometimes they are frim-fram with their terms and are so scared of discrimination issues. I think it will help to focus on the real reason for the damage to the carpet is:

Because it is really the bleach spot that makes the carpet ruined and that is something the guest put on the carpet so it would be ruined with or without a dog involved. And really the poop, if cleaned properly, should not have ruined a carpet. It is indeed the guest who ruined the carpet by putting a bleach spray on it. I personally would focus on that as there’s not so much wiggle room for a daft CS agent.

I might leave the dog out of it more or less as it makes it easier for CS and your claim about the guest “putting bleach spray on your carpet” has solid photo evidence and is clearly a ridiculous and damaging act on your property. IMO, this will help you get some money for the damage.


Feckin brilliant you are.


I hope the information about leaving the emotional support animal in the room all day and it damaging your listing will go into your review review of her. Future hosts need to be warned.


Yup, I included this in my review of her.