The Phone Calls.

Any vet who has ever had to man the after hours phones will be able to sympathise with the RSPCA, who have released a list of some of the stranger calls they have received over the course of 2011.

Examples include:

A caller rang to complain that a neighbour’s power shower caused their dog to go to the toilet.

A concerned resident who thought gulls were in their area were radioactive – it turned out that nearby garden lights were illuminating them and turning them green.

A lady phoned in to complain that the blackbird in her garden didn’t sing.

—One caller rang to cancel a visit as their dead tortoise had ‘come back to life’.

Another caller rang in concerned about the talking meerkats on the Compare the Market advertisement.

—A caller requested the RSPCA to come and get their dog down the stairs as it was too heavy for them to carry.

—Finally an inspector was called out to deal with a report of improper killing of ferrets dumped in a bag. On arrival the inspector found a fake mink shawl.

If I am honest, I would have to say that I have dealt with many call outs just as weird as many of those. You talk to the caller, explain the limits of what you can and can’t help with and suggest a solution or two if possible.

The phone calls that really annoy vets are the ones that should have been dealt with before the holiday or weekend. The dog that’s been scratching for a week and has finally ripped a hole in itself, the cat that has been throwing up for a few weeks and is now refusing to eat anything and the animal that has been limping for a month but now refuses to weight bear at all.

Do yourself and your vet a favour.  If you notice something going on with your pet for more than 24 hours, then ring  your vet, during normal office hours, and ask for some advice. Not only is it annoying when vets have to see non emergencies out of hours, but it will cost you more.

And before you trot out the I’ve Got Insurance card, just remember that your excess for the following year is going to increase proportionally to what every you’ve claimed previously. In other words, sooner or later you pay for it.

This slightly grumpy New Years blog entry is brought to you courtesy of the dozens of people who kindly phoned me over the holiday period, even though I don’t usually see their pets, as the animals concerned were not right, not eating, needed their anal glands squeezed, wouldn’t come out from under the bed and seemed cold.

All the relevant vets had After Hours provision in place, their clients just didn’t fancy having to leave their nice warm homes and drag their poorly pets to an unfamiliar clinic miles out of their way.

Unfortunately for them, I felt exactly the same way.

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