Saturday, March 28, 2009

Man's Best Friend

This topic has been in the back of my mind for awhile now. I've been mulling it over thinking about if I really wanted to blarg about it, or keep it in my overflowing filing cabinet of thoughts. But, I've come to the conclusion that I'm going to share my thoughts. After all, that's what blogging is for. I'm also most likely writing about this now because I should be up cleaning and being a responsible adult. But instead, I'm parked in front of my computer drinking wine and wasting time. It's sort of my specialty.

So as many of you know, I work at a veterinary hospital. Now to the layperson a 'vet hospital' has one envisioning a little clinic where you take your puppy or kitten to get it's 'shots' or 'fixed'. And while I have worked at this type of vet clinic, my current employer is far from such. Let me elaborate a bit for you. The vet hospital I work at is a 'Specialty Practice'. We do the things your regular Vet can't or won't do: major surgeries (ie: fractures, ACL repair and other knee problems, spinal discs, and foreign bodies [your dog ate your underwear and now we need to remove them]. My job is to prepare for and assist with these surgeries. That is about it. I rarely deal with owners (clients), never answer the phone, but unfortunately still have to clean up dog poop if Brandon hasn't already taken care of that. If someone were to ask me what I liked about this job opposed to a 'regular' clinic, most likely the first thing out of my mouth would be, "I don't have to deal with clients". Now as awful as this may sound, it is true. I in NO way miss talking with the obnoxious clients out there: the know-it-all breeder, the my-dog-is-a-human person, the people with 20 dogs and no money to care for them, the woman that drags her 40 screaming brats into the clinic to get her dog vaccinated, and the list goes on. I also don't miss answering the phone. "Hi my dog just ate my whole bottle of Xanax, is that bad?" or "My dog got hit by a car a week ago and his leg is rotten and dangling, should I bring him in?" I'm sorry, but people are dumb. It's unfortunate that humans look at pet ownership as a right and not a privilege.

Now that you have read that, let me share the other side of my feelings.

Working with animals without their owners by their side definitely has its benefits. But it also starts to make one look at the animals as just a patient, and you forget about the bond that some person out there has with this dog or cat. This all sort of hit me a few weeks ago when I was taking a dog down to ICU after a surgery. In ICU there was a guy laying in the kennel with his very sick dog. The man came everyday for hours to see his dog, who I believe we sadly had to euthanize eventually . It made me really sad. I was almost mad at myself for becoming so immune to the emotional side of my job. Because I barely work with the owners of the animals, I forget how good it feels when you're returning that 3 month old puppy who broke his leg to the owner who hasn't gotten any sleep since they dropped the dog off. Their eyes watering with overwhelming joy and thanks that you were able to fix their beloved pet. That is what makes my job worth it, and how I wish I were reminded of that more often. So to my dismay, my job is not 'playing with puppies and kittens all day'. It is slowly becoming more physically and emotionally wearing.

I apologize for the melancholy undertones of this blog. It was just something I felt I needed to share, as many people have no idea what I even do for a living.

1 comment: