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We All Like Spike

, , , , , | Right | April 24, 2020

The kennel I work for offers multiple sizes and types of runs for our guests. They range from simple sheet metal with concrete floors, to sliding glass doors with a doggie door, to a private fenced patio and a TV and fancy dog bed in the run.

A family with a young girl is dropping off their dog for a week in one of the mid-price runs. They ask to walk her to the run, which we allow.

After we get the dog all set up with her bed and water bowl, the little girl says:

Girl: “So, where is Spike going to sleep?”

I’m a bit confused because the dog’s name is not Spike.

Mom: “What do you mean, honey?”

Girl: “Dogs can’t go to Disney, so Spike has to stay here, too.”

The girl pulls a stuffed dog out of her backpack.

Girl: “Where does he sleep?”

Me: “Well, why don’t I give you the tour? You can decide which run he gets.”

I take the family on the full tour just like I would anyone that asked, and the little girl decides Spike should get the super deluxe extra-large suite, of course. So, I set it up for Spike, and she puts him on the bed, pats him on the head, and tells him to be good for the week and she’ll bring him something from Disney.

As we are walking out, her father whispers:

Father: “So, how much is Spike’s room going to cost me?”

Me: “As soon as y’all are off property, Spike is getting wrapped in a plastic bag, labeled, and put in the storage closet.”

He slipped me a $50 bill!


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The Heavy Weight Of Gender Norms

, , , , | Right | April 20, 2020

I am a skinny twenty-three-year-old girl working a manual labor job. Because of the job, I am actually very strong, able to lift about eighty pounds in front of me.

Me: “I can take your bag of dog food and blankets into the kennel with me.”

Client: “Oh, no, the food is very heavy. I can carry it for you.”

Me: “Sir, it’s only forty pounds. I can get it. Besides, I need to take it into an Employees Only area.”

Client: “Oh. Maybe we should wait until one of the male employees is ready. I’m sure he’ll be able to get it.”

Me: “We don’t currently have any male employees. Besides, I lift much heavier things every day.”

Client: “That’s discrimination! You can’t have an all-female staff!”

Me: “It’s not that my boss doesn’t hire males; it’s that we currently only have women working here. We had a guy who quit last month.”

Client: “Oh… Well, let me carry the food.”

Ignoring him, I lift the bag of dog food in a fireman’s carry and run with it the hundred yards across the play yard into the kennel. When I come back to the office, I ask the client:

Me: “So. Do you want your dog bathed before she is returned?”

Client: “That would be great. Wow. That was really impressive. You’re way stronger than you look!”

Me: “Thanks! Have a nice day!”

Since then, he has been very pleasant and has returned to the kennel several times.

His Observation Skills Have No Leg To Stand On  

, , , , , , | Working | February 5, 2020

(One of our regular guests is a very active miniature pinscher who regularly boards for multiple weeks at a time while her owner works on an oilrig and has been coming to us for six years. My coworker has been working here for a few months now and [Dog] has boarded with us at least twice since he started. Most recently, [Dog] has been boarding for two weeks in the section that coworker has been assigned to every day. So, for two weeks, he has fed, walked, and played with this dog multiple times a day. This conversation happens Tuesday morning while we are at the sink doing the breakfast dishes after the morning walks. [Coworker] has been off since Friday while I worked all weekend.)

Coworker: “Hey, [My Name], what happened to [Dog]’s leg?

Me: “Oh, it got stuck under a hurricane fence, and between her struggling and the owner not knowing how to get her out, the muscles were shredded to the point where the vet had no choice but to take it off.”

Coworker: “That sucks. She healed up pretty well, though, and she runs like she still has all four.”

Me: “Yeah, she’s a tough little thing.”

Coworker: “Which fence was it? I didn’t think we had any hurricane fences.”

Me: “I don’t know; it wasn’t here. Her owner had taken her for a walk somewhere.”

Coworker: “Oh, poor Mr. [Owner], that must have been terrible for him.”

Me: “Yeah, and he had to go to work right after [Dog] got out of the vet’s, but we handled the post-surgical care here. It was actually easier than you’d think. [Dog] was a great patient; well, she was sedated most of the time. The only time I think I’ve ever walked into her run and not been jumped on.”

Coworker: “Sure healed fast. I mean, I couldn’t even find a scar.”

Me: “Well, yeah, I guess.”

Coworker: “I mean, if it was a human they’d keep us in the hospital for months after that, but they sent her back right away.”

Me: “What?”

Coworker: “I mean, it just happened on Saturday, right?”

Me: “What? No, that was like three years ago.”

Coworker: “What?”

Me: “She’s literally only had three legs for as long as you’ve known her. You only just now noticed?”

Coworker: “Yeah.”

Me:It’s her front leg! She spends her entire playtime trying to climb into your lap and lick you to death. How did you not… You seriously thought they amputated a leg over the weekend and it looks like that now?”

Coworker: “Um…”

(The rest of the staff all got a good laugh when we told them the story. We all agreed that given how fast [Dog] moves and how little her injury bothers her, the oversight was understandable. But his secret Santa at that year’s Christmas party got him a coffee cup that said, “Least observant employee award.”)

The Dog Has To Put Up With More Than A Cough

, , , , , | Right | November 12, 2019

(I am the front desk clerk at a dog boarding kennel. To stay at our kennel, we require certain vaccines be administered at least a week before the dog’s stay to ensure they will not have a reaction to the vaccine and to ensure the vaccine has taken full effect before their stay. We require one such vaccine called “Kennel Cough” which protects dogs from getting what would be considered bronchitis for dogs. It’s not deadly but bad enough to make your dog pretty sick for a considerable amount of time. We enforce the vaccination policy very strictly and do not make any exceptions whatsoever. A customer comes storming up to the front desk already fuming, clutching paperwork in his fist and dragging his small dog and young son with him. His son looks noticeably embarrassed.)

Customer: *slamming paperwork down on the counter* “I want to bring my dog in to board with you tomorrow but the lady on the phone said I do not have all the required vaccines. Check for me now!”

Me: *a little taken aback by his gruffness* “I would be happy to, sir! Let me have a look here…”

(After looking over his paperwork, I discover his dog has never received a Kennel Cough vaccine before, which is required for entry into our facility.)

Me: “Okay, it looks like you have most of the required vaccines, but we also require the Kennel Cough vaccine to protect your dog from contracting a costly and uncomfortable sickness. I can recommend alternate boarding facilities for you that are veterinary practices, so not only can they administer the vaccine for you today, but they can also board your dog, as well! Unfortunately, we have a one-week waiting period after a vaccine is administered to ensure the dog has no reaction and is completely covered if he should somehow come into contact with the virus, so he would not be able to check in with us tomorrow as y—”

Customer: *practically exploding* “NOW THIS MAKES ME ANGRY. I NEED TO BOARD MY DOG AND YOU WON’T LET ME BECAUSE HE MIGHT CATCH A COLD? YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO DO YOUR JOB. YOU WILL TAKE MY DOG. THE VET DIDN’T TELL ME I NEEDED THIS VACCINE AND I TOLD THEM I WANTED TO LEAVE HIM HERE SO YOU NEED TO FIGURE SOMETHING OUT.”

Me: “Sir, please calm down; I will not be spoken to in such a manner. Not all boarding facilities require the same vaccines, so your vet had no way of knowing what to give unless you asked for them specifically. Furthermore, Kennel Cough is not a ‘cold.’ It is actually a potentially dangerous virus that could cause your dog to end up in the vet or in worst cases, dead. We do not want anything to happen to any dog in our facility; if he caught something here we are not liable for any medical bills he may incur. I am sorry, but all I can do at this point is recommend a veterinary boarding facility and set you up there.”

Customer: “NOT. GOOD. ENOUGH. YOU NEED TO FIX THIS, YOU F****** B****!”

(The customer proceeds to slam his paperwork onto my desk so hard he knocks my computer monitor off-kilter. I have had enough of his attitude. I am not an easily intimidated lady, although some people think they can push me around.)

Me: *smiling* “Could I please get your first and last name and your pet’s name?”

Customer: *sneering* “It’s [Customer] and [Pet].”

Me: “All right, I have found you in our system and I have deleted your reservation and marked you as ‘DO NOT BOOK.’ You are permanently banned from our kennel and if you try to come back you will be escorted away. Please take your pet and your paperwork and leave before I call the cops to escort you out.”

Customer: *speechless* “But I… but… WHERE WE LEAVE OUR DOG?”

Me: “I was going to suggest alternate boarding, but since you have chosen to treat me in such a degrading manner, I am refusing you service along with any help. Good luck in your endeavors.”

Customer: *still staring at me like I just slapped him across the face*

Me: *leaning over to look around him with a smile* “Next, please! How can I help you, ma’am?”

(He stormed out after that, defeated, with his son and dog in tow. We never heard from him again. I went home that night and made myself a strong drink.)

Will Get Less Than Five Woofs On Yelp

, , , | Right | October 2, 2019

(I work at a pet boarding facility that is very popular, which means we fill up quickly, especially on weekends. We have five different sized kennels people can book: cages, cabins, large cabins, suites, and large suites. A client comes in with his three dogs: two rather large labs and a Jack Russel puppy. The following exchange takes place with my manager who is working the front desk.)

Client: “Hi, we have [Pets] here for boarding.”

Manager: “Perfect!” *looks up booking* “Okay, it looks like we have [Jack Russel] in a cage and [Labs] in a cabin.”

Client: “Yeah, we made that booking right after we got our puppy, but the female lab and the puppy have really bonded so we want them all together.”

Manager: “Oh, I’m sorry, sir, but our cabins are not big enough for three dogs.”

Client: “What?! That’s ridiculous; I want to see these cabins! I’m sure it will be fine.”

Manager: “We’d be happy to show you, sir.”

(She pages one of my coworkers working in the back to come give him a quick tour. Our cabins and our large cabins are in the same area.)

Client: *after the tour* “Yeah, I guess you’re right; they wouldn’t fit. I did see some bigger kennels, though, and they would all three fit in those for sure.”

Manager: “I can see if we have any openings.” *quickly looks through the computer, even though she knows we are full* “I’m sorry, sir, but all of our large ones are booked. You will have to keep the two different kennels, but we will make sure they get plenty of time together.”

Client: “Well, can’t you just move another dog into the smaller one and let us have the bigger one? Their owners would never know.”

Manager: *shocked expression* “Sir, we can’t change someone else’s booking. That would be unprofessional. Wouldn’t you be upset if we moved your dogs around for someone else?”

Client: “Yeah, but they’d never have to know! My dogs are only staying for a few days.” *they are staying over a week* “And how was I supposed to know they would all bond so well?”

(This went back and forth for a while before the client, reluctantly, agreed to his original booking. He just couldn’t understand why we wouldn’t move someone else so his dogs could be together even though he was the one who booked them separately.)