On the lighter side: Embarrassing moments in pet healthcare
Want a little uplift in your day? (We all need a little respite from the frustrations of this week’s news and angst.) Try on a few of these embarrassing moments stolen either from a colleague’s entertaining career or my very own as an antidote to what ails us:
1-There was that time when the lanky Doberman jumped up on his owner, hooking his claw into the V of her cleavage, thereby dislodging all her front-hooking garments in one fell swoop. It would have been OK—sort-of—except that this was a male colleague of mine who was notorious for his blushing trouble. To make matters worse, his tech was challenged in the social mores arena and could not contain her laughter. I don’t know if they ever saw the client again but I would bet against it.
2-Overheard at a vet conference: A man brings his big, manly dog to the “lady vet” to see what might be awry with his digestive habits. Apparently, he did not want to offend her with tales of bowel movements gone awry so by the time she discovered the real problem there was projectile diarrhea all over her scrubs. She said she’d never been so happy to be so tall.
3-I once had to explain to a couple of frat boys why their dog’s penis was not going back into its proper place. Red-faced after my frank explanation of the dangers of over-excitement, especially after the technician giggled at their obvious mortification, they left the dog with a couple hundred bucks and didn’t come back for days.
4-The young vet whose supermodel client tore off her dress to place in her dog’s cage for “safe-sniffing”? Apart from having a great story, I’ll bet he was embarrassed. I’ll also bet the dog wasn’t the only one sniffing the dress by the end of that shift.
5-Having to tell a famous client to keep his—ahem—in his pants (as he urinated in the lobby’s potted plant). That extra-special demonstration came after his dog had done the very same foul deed. I was embarrassed to be the one to have to say something—but this guy was so nasty I just wanted him out of the hospital ASAP.
6-Examining an aggressive dog on the floor then (for no apparent reason) falling over like a “weeble-wobble” at 8 1/2 months of overdeveloped pregnancy, thus revealing my “I’m-so-pregnant-I-can’t-wear-anything-else” underwear (at least I was wearing some).
7-Performing an ejaculation on a large dog (for semen analysis prior to breeding) and having the [male] owner chant, “go, Boy, go!” the whole time. Priceless.
8-Trying and failing to implant a microchip multiple times (something I had done perhaps a thousand times before) after explaining to the client how easy it was to do. She’s refused to bring her pets to me ever since. (Can you blame her?)
9-Having an impressively inebriated owner offer to take me out “after my shift” while standing in the ER waiting room in front of the entire staff and the waiting clientele. It wouldn’t have been so bad had he not offered to explain where he would take me and what his exact plans were. For the record, the police were summoned.
10-Finding such a ginormous bone in a dog’s rectum (that alone should’ve been enough) that I couldn’t manage to extract under anesthesia, with buckets of lube and my dwindling patience. I had to send this drowsy case sixty miles away to the vet school where they observed the fruits of my labor first-hand and—much to my chagrin—extracted the bone without incident (or so they said, but I’m not sure I believe them).
11-Courtesy of a friend in the biz: The tale of the wayward abdominal palpation that led to the untoward cupping of the owner’s left breast. Eek!
12-And this story’s cousin—my own—about the time the owner refused to unhand her beast during its yearly vaccines. Bucking like a bronco, this pup ended up inflicting a tiny needle jab into his mother’s bosom. Sure, you could say it was my fault—and, technically, it was—but that was the last time this owner ever held one of her pets in the exam room. No harm done. “At least you won’t ever have to worry about Parvo,” I quipped. Luckily, she seemed amused.
There are so many more but they don’t come to mind immediately. I’ll have to post a follow-up. But I’m sure you’ll come up with a few choice embarrassing moments to help jog my memory.