Editor’s note: Lovefraud received the following story from a reader whom we’ll call, “Laura23.” She hired a pet sitter, who turned into a parasite and then a thief.
My mother was dying, I had to rush to be by her side. I have two dogs and I never travel because of them. I took a friend’s referral to hire a pet sitter. This pet sitter ended up asking to sleep on my couch after my initial evening interview with her, claiming her landlord was creepy when she comes home after dark. With all of the “me too” movement, my initial gut reaction was, “hell no” he isn’t going to harass you for coming home after dark.
My mother was dying and I had to go out of town again, and used this dog sitter again, but each time she went into lengthy sob stories about her belongings being left at 2 different old roommates apartments and her storage unit going up for auction, and she was going to lose all of her items, and then I asked her if I could help her get her belongings at least from her last apartment.
She didn’t lift a finger
She acted all relieved that I would help her, she said she couldn’t face the roommate, due to unknown complications… so I arranged to come get her stuff with the former roommate, which was more than a packed SUV full, on a hot summer day 4 flights of stairs…. the pet sitter girl didn’t lift a finger. I rented the car, drove over there, met with roommate, moved all the tons of crap into the car, drove it to my own apartment, asked her to meet me here to unload it, I basically did all the work and she stood there watching.
Then I moved it all into my apartment and told her she could spend the time I am gone for to see my mother (a week) to sort her belongings and take to Salvation Army anything she didn’t need. Then when I returned I would rent another SUV and we could take it to her storage unit, which I paid all of her back due months at the storage unit for her, so she could keep her violin that supposedly was in there. (Don’t believe it was). When she opened the storage unit doors it looked empty but she purposely pushed the ladder stairs in a way where I couldn’t see fully inside / she blocked me.
So here I have rented 2 days of car rentals paid several hundred in back due storage unit months for her, hot sweaty back breaking labor moving her stuff out of her old roommate’s apartment.
Wants to sleep on my couch
She keeps asking to crash on my couch when I get back in town, she always lingers to around dinner time… to not only get me to feed her, but to use the old “my landlord is creepy after dark” to try to get me to let her stay on my couch.
I started to tell her after she finished babysitting my dogs that we need to get her back home safely before dark. (I didn’t say this but I should have….I DO NOT WANT A ROOMMATE/ or Another mouth to feed/ I like my privacy and I DO NOT KNOW THIS WOMAN except as a supposedly professional dog walker…)
Every time she came to help me out, during my stressful time of my mother’s failing health and death… she spent more time giving me sob stories of how her mother died, and that no one likes her for some unknown reason, she had to make a brand new Facebook page for some reason because all her old Facebook contacts didn’t like her and were being mean, and that she can’t do normal jobs, because no one likes her, and she just can’t figure out why.
She mentioned getting money from men that like her to sit and have dinner with them, but she hated that they try to touch her…. and that she can’t pay her rent. She claims every single person that is male is trying to touch her inappropriately, it is a miracle, because some of these guys I know and they are way too shy to touch any woman.
She hooked me in to help her
She owed tons of back due rent to her landlord she said, and she said he tries to touch her when she passes by him…. I believed her then, but now I see, it was just a way to hook me to do all of the things I did to help her.
Read more: Tip-off trait of a sociopath — look for the pity play
I helped her sign up for the affordable housing program in NYC, helped her get a copy of her birth certificate, she said her remaining family members hated her, and wouldn’t let her get any memorabilia from her mother, I asked her why they would hate her, and she said they always thought she caused her mother to go crazy and that she drained her mother’s finances. (I have a feeling they hated her for draining her mother’s bank account for sure).
She somehow believes that she is going to be a big Broadway star… or big cabaret singer in NYC.
The last dog walk
When I had her at my apartment the very last time. I asked her to please come out with me, I needed to walk my dogs. She had already been lingering at my apartment for 4 hours… which I tried to be nice during but I had things to do now. I needed to take my dogs out and wanted her gone before it got dark again.
This time she made some lame excuse of needing to make a couple phone calls and could she stay and do that in my apartment while I walk my dogs…. I said, I would rather you come out with me, and you are welcome to make calls in my lobby downstairs there are chairs and everything.
This is when she showed bizarre anger and huffed saying, can’t I just have some privacy! I said, what? you can have privacy in the lobby there are little nooks with couches down there. Then she surprised me by getting so angry she threw her head back and made fists and yelled at the ceiling, I just freakin want some privacy for two phone calls jeeeeez!
At this point my dogs are all leashed up and need to go pee. I am thinking to myself, wow, she’s really having a rough time. I hate it, but if it makes her have some comfort to make phone calls while I walk my dogs, I guess that is the least I can do to help someone out.
I walked my dogs fast because it didn’t sit right, it felt off. I was outside maybe 10 minutes total. When I got back up to my apartment she was gone. How do you do 2 phone calls that fast that need all of this privacy??? So I am texting her, where are you? no answer, until about 15 minutes later, she says, oh I am home in Harlem now.
My jewelry is missing
Come to find about a month after that, on my birthday I went to get a special necklace my grandparents had given me. It was missing, then I looked around in my jewelry box to try to find it and realized ALL of my lifetime of jewelry was stolen, my college ring! My boyfriend rings, bracelets, necklaces, earrings, my parents diamond earrings they gave me for graduation! Tiffany’s necklaces my friends have given me through the years… ALL STOLEN.
She picked through and left any costume /fake jewelry and really dug to the bottom to find every last piece of REAL jewelry in the box. She had all of that time to investigate my stuff when I was gone to see my mother, but I feel she executed her jewelry heist on this particular day. Due to the weird angry behavior.
She injured my dog
Also, she gave me a weird story before that of how my doormen think she is stupid for the way she handled my dog… I asked why, and she said she couldn’t get my dog to walk through the lobby, he put on his breaks. So the doorman offered a treat to help get the dog out the door. But she claimed this means they think she is stupid.
But what I think really happened was she was hurting my dog pulling on his neck to get him out the door, because after she had dog sat, I ended up having to take him to the vet as he was in agony showing signs of pain and discomfort. I blamed it on something else at first, not thinking she would ever hurt a dog. but hindsight makes me think she made up that story about the doorman and the lobby to cover if they tattled on her for pulling on my dogs neck too hard. The vet said my dog now has a permanant slipped disc for the rest of his life.
Supposed to pay me back
When I offered to help her pay her storage unit back due months, and offered to rent the cars to help her move her belongings out of an old roommate’s apartment, it was with the agreement that she would be paying me back by working for me doing some future dog sitting and bookkeeping work. She never paid me back a cent.
I helped her apply for affordable housing for starving artists in the city, and tried to help her get food stamps and other services to help her get on the good foot. She totally gave sob stories the entire time I was going through a sob story and all I did was comfort her and try to help her during my rough time of my mother’s passing.
The pet sitter stole the most sentimental things, each of these jewelry pieces represented a very special moment in my life. My dog is permanently injured. I filed a police report for grand larceny. They said there’s nothing really I can do because I gave her a key to my apartment to walk my dogs when I wasn’t there.
She had free run of the house and can touch anything she wants while in there. She never would give her address, and she gave a phony address nearby her real one, when a friend of mine offered to send her home in an uber one night. (Did background check on that address and saw her current address was about a block away).
She unfriended me and the people who referred her to me on Facebook for some reason…. before I accused her of stealing my jewelry. Why would she need to do that?
I reported the crime to the police. It is grand larceny. The detective had me call the pet sitter on the phone to confront her about her stealing my jewelry… she played dumb, and then got angry and said “I’m hanging up” while I started listing the items she stole. The police did not do anything.
I had a bad apple detective, he was acting very high schoolish. Because I could only speak to the intake detective to follow up on anything, (intake detective gave email and phone number to reach out with any questions) but the detective I was assigned, a different cop, would not give me any email or phone number and never did any follow up calls to me…(or any detective work on my case)
I had to beg the intake guy to help me get some kind of updates. It turned into a weird, “oh you like your beloved detective more than me huh, sorry I am not your beloved guy the detective you would rather have huh?” what??? I am a grown woman, this was almost as bizarre as my sociopath pet sitter stealing all of my jewelry…
Learn more: How to report your abuser’s crimes so the police take you seriously