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No Dedication To Medication

, , , , , | Right | January 6, 2022

CONTENT WARNING: Death & Animal Cruelty


I work at a boarding kennel. We have two dogs come in regularly, both beautiful show-grade Borzois. One is fairly old and the other quite young.

The owners of these dogs don’t socialise much with actual people.

During a stay, the older one tragically passes away in his outside run with his brother by his side. These dogs are some of my favourites, and we are all devastated to inform the owners of their dog’s passing while they are away. We call them after we find him.

Receptionist: “Hello, Mrs. [Owner]. I’m so sorry to be making this call, but it seems [Dog] has passed away this evening. We’re so sorry.”

The receptionist then goes on to explain we had been doing rounds to check on everyone and a kennel hand had found him, and then we’d left his body until they gave us direction in what to do, and we’d moved every other nearby dog away and/or locked them inside, including his brother.

Owner: “Oh, yes. Well, he did have a heart condition. That’s what his meds were for.”

Alarm bells start ringing; we never gave him meds. The receptionist frantically looks up his file, panicking that we’d be responsible for his death, but sees no meds on file. She obviously has to tell the owners about this, in case.

Receptionist: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but we don’t have meds on file for him.”

Owner: “Oh, yes, they were blood thinners, but we didn’t bring them with us.”

Receptionist: “Can I ask, why not? They seem pretty important!”

Owner: “Well, he was getting on a bit, and we figured it would be the easiest way to let him go.”

Yes, you read that right. These people, who had been bringing these dogs in for years, had put their dogs with us for the specific purpose of letting their elderly dog die here.

The next time they came in — because the owner refused to ban them — they had a Borzoi puppy.

Having Second Thoughts About This Place

, , , , , | Working | December 14, 2021

The vet that I take my dog to also offers boarding. I call to get him in because I’m going to be out of town.

Me: “I’d like to board my dog the ninth through the thirteenth.”

Receptionist: “We’ve got space then. I’ll go ahead and put him down.”

I know she meant she’d write it down on the schedule, but maybe don’t use the phrase “put him down” while working at a vet’s office.

Thanks For Getting Her Out Of Our Hair!

, , , | Right | June 25, 2021

I work at a boarding kennel. On this particular morning, there are four customers in our reception area. [Customer #1] is a young girl with special needs, and her mother is with her. [Customer #2] is my hero. [Customer #3] is a bitter, mean-spirited hag.

The girl with special needs has short-cut hair that has been dyed in a mix of pink, purple, and blue. She obviously finds communication difficult but she’s always polite. With her mother’s encouragement, she answers the questions I need to ask about her cat and even manages a shy smile as I take the box from her.

I leave my coworker to process payment while I take the cat to get settled, coming back just in time to see the girl’s mother already outside while the girl steps back, holding the door open for [Customer #3] to enter. She swoops in with an exaggerated huff of disgust.

Customer #3: “Teenagers these days, am I right? They have no respect for anyone.”

At first, I assume something must have happened prior to her visit since nothing I’ve witnessed could be seen as remotely disrespectful.

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer #3: “Well, fancy doing that to her hair? Why should I have to look at an ugly [lesbian slur] like that?”

I’m both stunned and outraged, trying to find words that won’t get me fired while secretly desperate to tell her what I really think. The girl in the doorway was already upset about having to leave her cat and is now on the verge of tears.

[Customer #2] is an older gentleman with shock-white hair and an infectious smile that suddenly turns to a stony glare as he speaks up.

Customer #2: “Get your eyes tested, you old hag. She looks great. I might get my hair done like that.” *To the girl* “Do you think it would suit me? I mean, I’m not as pretty as you, but it might look cool? Or I could have green, orange, and red; I’d look like a fruit salad!”

The girl went from tears to giggles in seconds and nodded enthusiastically at his suggestion for what colours he might try in his hair. [Customer #3] ended up storming out in disgust. We never learned why she was there in the first place.

Thank you, sir, for saying what I couldn’t and for putting a smile back on that girl’s face.

This story is part of our Best Of June 2021 roundup!

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When Pet Owners Give You Paws For Thought

, , , , | Right | April 26, 2021

I work in a boarding kennel and cattery. I am taking a dog up to reception who visits regularly, so we know his behaviour and personality really well and can tell when something is off. He was only in the kennels with us for a weekend.

Me: “Hi, Mr. & Mrs. [Customer’s Last Name], here’s Hugo! He’s had a good time and made lots of friends as always, but we did notice that he has been a tad lethargic this time around and limping on his left front leg.”

Customer: “Oh, no! His meds are supposed to help with that!”

Alarm bells start ringing because I KNOW Hugo was never given any meds over the weekend.

Me: “Oh, my, I’m so sorry. We never gave him any meds!”

Customer: “Oh, no, we kept them at home; we didn’t want them to get lost here!”

Me: “…”

We’re Not Kitten; You’re A Hero!

, , , , , , | Healthy | April 19, 2021

I’m a Registered Veterinary Technician running my own pet sitting and dog walking business. I’m on day two of a three-day overnight pet sit at a breeder’s home with cats and dogs and it’s a long weekend for Easter. There are currently three six-and-a-half-week-old kittens running about creating havoc and general kitten mischief.

I have to drive back into town to care for my own pets and take a quick shower. Shortly after returning to the client’s home, I hear faint distressed meowing coming from down the hallway. I go to investigate, opening some of the bedrooms to check to make sure I didn’t lock a kitten in when letting the dogs in and out of their rooms.

I get to the master bedroom and find a bunch of the cats peeking under the bed, and the meowing is coming from underneath it. I get down and look and find one of the kittens wrapped up in some fabric that had been torn from the bottom of the box spring. I reach under to try to unwrap her, but she’s halfway under and I can barely reach or see her and it feels like the fabric is wrapped around a leg. I crawl back out and rush to the kitchen to grab a pair of scissors to try to cut her out with.

On my way back, I hear her give one more strained cry and fall silent. I rush over to the side of the bed and get down, ready to reach back under, only to be face to face with an angry hissing momma cat. Fearing more for the kitten than myself, I plead with her not to scratch my face and reach under. The kitten has gone limp. In a panic, I realize that there is no way I am going to be able to maneuver the scissors to cut the fabric and instead grab a handful of the fabric close to the boxspring and pull. I don’t know if it’s adrenaline or if the fabric is just frayed enough, but I manage to rip the fabric from the bed and pull the kitten out.

She’s still not moving or breathing, and I see that the fabric is wrapped tightly around her little neck. I manage to get the scissors between the fabric and cut it. Even with the fabric removed from her neck, she still is not breathing, and I begin CPR and mouth to mouth. After a minute of compressions and breaths, she starts coughing and moving sluggishly. I scoop her up and rush to put her in a carrier while getting the emergency vet number and also trying to reach my client over the phone.

We don’t have an emergency vet that stays open up here; instead, the clinics rotate who is on call each day and you have to wait for them to call you back. While waiting, I keep monitoring the kitten, and she slowly starts to move around and be aware of her surroundings.

Finally, after twenty minutes, the vet calls me back and we go through an assessment over the phone to determine if I should bring her in. By then, the kitten is acting as if nothing happened beyond being a bit quiet, and it is decided that she will be okay.

And that is how I saved the life of a six-and-a-half-week-old kitten by knowing how to perform CPR on pets. Happy Pet First Aid Month, everyone! If you have pets, please consider enrolling in a class that will teach you Pet CPR and First Aid; you never know when it may save a tiny life.

This story is part of our Feel Good roundup for April 2021!

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