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A Double Coat Of Entitlement

, , , , , | Right | June 18, 2020

I work at a small animal hospital that offers limited boarding and grooming services. Our main focus is on healthcare. Because we are a small practice with many of our employees working in dual departments for coverage, we have rules for when we can provide certain services.

For example, if you want “grooming,” we require animals to make appointments a couple of days ahead and they have to be dropped off in the morning. This way we can make sure we have someone who can give the dog a bath with enough time to dry and be brushed out. We make exceptions for small, short-haired dogs like Chihuahuas.

It is 2:30 pm.

Client: “I would like to bring my pet in for a bath.”

Me: “Okay, let me pull up your account. What is your last name and your pets’ name, and when would you like to bring your pet in?”

Client: “I am [Client] and I would like to bring her in this afternoon if that’s okay.”

On the account I see that the pet is a long-haired, hundred-pound shepherd mix who is also aggressive.

Me: “Unfortunately, ma’am, we do not do grooming services in the afternoon since we don’t have the time nor the staff available.”

Client: “Really? But I really need to get her in. We are getting new carpet put in today so I need her to be clean.”

Me: “I am sorry, ma’am, but we can’t do a bath on a double-coated dog this late in the day.”

Client: “Can’t you just ask [Doctor]? She knows me.”

I go to the doctor who is also the owner of the practice and fill her in. Originally, she says no but when I inform the client, she presses again. I go back to the doctor and she agrees but with conditions.

Me: “Okay, [Doctor] says it is okay if you bring [Pet] in now. You can expect her to be done right before we close at 5:30. We cannot promise that we will be able to brush her out completely but we will do the best we can. Please try to be in the clinic no later than 5:15 to pick her up.”

The client shows up thirty minutes later and the technician who really should be helping the doctors gets started on giving the pet a bath. At 4:15 pm:

Client: “Hi. I just want to know if my pet is ready for pick up.”

Me: “No, she is still pretty wet. It takes a long time for double-coated dogs to dry.”

Client: “Can you give me a time when she will be ready?”

Me: “She probably won’t be ready until right before we close at 5:30.”

Client: “She won’t be ready sooner? I need to plan out the rest of the night; I don’t want to have to wait around for her to be ready.”

Me: “Ma’am, we are doing the best we can to get her back to you. Like I said, double-coated dogs take a long time to dry. Then, we have to brush her really good because if we don’t you will have little puffs of white hair everywhere. The bath and the dryer loosen up the undercoat. You don’t want to have dog hair all over your new carpet, do you?”

Client: “We aren’t getting carpet put in today; we are just getting our house measured for new carpet.”

Me: *Frustrated pause* “You can pick your pet up at 5:15.”

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