Those Are Some Pretty Smart Guinea Pigs

| SK, Canada | Working | February 2, 2016

(I’m nine years old. I’m about to get my first pets — guinea pigs. My mom made me research them before we got them, and my research said it was best to get two guinea pigs who were sisters. I call my chosen pet store to see if they have guinea pigs.)

Me: “Hi, do you have guinea pigs?”

Clerk: “We sure do! We’ve got quite a variety right now!”

Me: “That’s great! Do you have any sisters?”

Clerk: *without a pause* “I do have sisters. One’s a nurse and one’s a teacher.”

Me: “I meant… do you have guinea pigs who are sisters?”

Clerk: “…Oh. Yes, we do.”

Your Dog Does Not Compute

| USA | Right | January 27, 2016

(A woman comes in with a Chihuahua that has been banned from the store because it’s frankly an aggressive little bugger and bites everything it can, including, on the last visit, a small child of about three years old.)

Customer: “I’d like a standard bath and grooming.”

Me: “I cannot do that, as your dog is banned from our store.”

Customer: *sets him on the counter, snarling and yapping, and leans in close to ask* “Could you just take him out back and hose him off? Nobody will have to know if you don’t enter it into the computer.” *slips me $50*

(By now the dog is attached to my sleeve, growling and tugging. I agree to take him out back. I go out the back door, put the snarling little maniac back in his crate in her car along with my ripped uniform and her 50 bucks, which he proceeds to chew up also. I walk back up to the counter in just the t-shirt I am wearing under my destroyed uniform.)

Customer: “Where’s my dog?”

Me: “What dog? I don’t have any dogs entered into my computer.”

(She never brought the little psycho back.)

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Not Just The Puppies You Want To Shut Up

| London, England, UK | Right | January 25, 2016

(A customer who has recently bought a puppy comes in, complaining that she isn’t getting any sleep. At this stage I’ve talked her through a number of problems offering advice at every stage. Another customer has just come in.)

Me: “So, do you go to the puppy whenever it cries?”

Customer #1: “Well, the puppy sleeps in my bedroom so it’s difficult not to; it’s my partner’s fault.”

Me: “It’s actually better for you and the puppy if the puppy sleeps in a different room. The kitchen would be a great place and you might want to think about crate training.”

(This is where the puppy sleeps in a largish cage which is useful in toilet training and helps keep the puppy safe at night and being less destructive.)

Customer #2: *interrupting* “Excuse me, but crate training is a waste of time! I never used the crate for my puppy and had to give the crate away to charity when my puppy was six months old! It’s cruel and the puppy views it as a prison!”

(She then turns away to answer the phone but poor Customer #1 is now horrified and clearly questioning everything I’ve told her in the past 15 minutes.)

Me: *trying to save the situation* “Crate training doesn’t work for everyone but it can be a useful tool in helping you train your dog! Here’s the number of a good trainer and she can help you decide if it’s the right option for you.”

(Customer #1 leaves a little happier and Customer #2 comes up to the counter to pay. She’s still on the phone but as she’s about to leave she drops this gem:)

Customer #2: “Oh, I hope I wasn’t interfering!”

Some Dogs Like To Schnapp

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | Working | January 15, 2016

(I am at the pet store to buy some more pet food for my dog.)

Me: “I would like to get [Dog Food Brand], please.”

Worker: “Sure, may I see your ID?”

Me: “Wait, what?”

Worker: “I need to see your ID before you can continue with your purchase.”

Me: “Why?”

Worker: “Because it would be illegal for me to serve you if you are under 18.”

Me: “And buying dog food is illegal because?”

Worker: “That would be $7.50…”

(Later, she explains that she used to work at a liquor shop…)

In Soviet Russia, Hamster Buys You

| USA | Working | January 8, 2016

(Though I don’t consider myself an expert of any kind, I have kept hamsters for about ten years, and am familiar with them. I am picking up some supplies at a pet store when I overhear this exchange between a woman and — according to her name tag — the small animal expert.)

Woman: “I’m just not sure what kind to get her. She’s only six, you see, so I want something that would be good for a child just learning about animals. But she LOVES hamsters.”

Expert: “Well, I’d recommend the Djungarian hamsters. They’re dwarf hamsters, and it’s always better to get a hamster more their size.”

Woman: “Are you sure?”

Expert: “Absolutely sure. I am an expert in small animals.”

Me: “I’m sorry. I don’t mean to butt in, but actually I would never recommend a dwarf hamster for a smaller child. The Russian dwarfs are better than the Chinese dwarfs, but get a Syrian hamster. They’re the bigger, classic hamsters. They’re a lot more tolerant to being dropped, and they’ll forgive you if you squeeze them a little harder than is comfortable, or pet them a little too roughly. Russian dwarfs aren’t vicious, but if you pet them too hard, they feel threatened and bite. You don’t want to encourage children dropping their pets and stuff, but mistakes happen, you know? Syrians are much better for smaller children.”

Expert: *scoffs* “Dwarfs are cuter.”

Me: “I actually think the Syrians are cuter, personally. But, I just was making a comment about their age-appropriateness. And Syrians are better for smaller kids than Russian dwarfs.”

Expert: “Well, maybe. But these aren’t Russian dwarfs. They’re Djungarians.”

(I point to the info card which reads: “Djungarian hamsters, also known as Siberian dwarfs, or Russian winter white dwarf hamsters..”)

Me: “Yes, they are. Just giving my opinion.”

(I walk on. Later, I see the mother at the check-out. I’m very pleased to see that she bought a Syrian.)

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