Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Chloe versus the Vet

This is Chloe the tortoise-shell cat. My "firstborn." She's six years old and today she's at the vet. Saturday night, she became ill and I couldn't get her to stop "becoming ill" by Monday morning so I took her to the vet; this morning, I went to pick her up, hoping for some sort of diagnosis, and the vet, who, after a day and a morning still hadn't seen me, left a note to tell me that the cat had hairballs and that would be $150 please. With one skeptical eyebrow raised, I said how odd it was that she "developed" these "hairballs" just 2 weeks after her visit to the vet for her annual checkups -- and, I noted, it was even stranger that her partner in crime, Allie, our tabby cat, has developed the exact same symptoms this morning. Sans hairballs. In other words, neither cat can even swallow food.

We all know what happened. The girls picked up some sort of virus a couple of weeks ago at the vet, but when I suggested it, instead of looking into it the nurses got defensive: we keep our cages clean, I can't remember what animals came in that day, that was 2 weeks ago (the time it takes for a human virus to "awaken" if I remember biology correctly) and so on and so forth. Since when did it become a bad thing for a doctor to say, "Oh? That information changes my outlook. I will look again." or "Oh? Perhaps I was wrong. If both of your animals have the exact symptoms at the exact time following a visit to my place of occupation, perhaps I should see what animals visited here to see if they picked up something I know how to treat already." Why, instead, do people make excuses for a mistake or ineptitude? Is it actually more important to appear right than to administer adequate care?

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