Having spent a large part of the day at our veterinary clinic (vet) I thought I would write about how it feels when everyone at the vet clinic knows you so well they remember your name and the names of all your animals unprompted. In fact I am reaching the point where I think we should have our own chair in the waiting room with our names on plaques.
When Everyone At The Veterinary Clinic Knows You
We started the day with a trip to the veterinary clinic taking the boys, Ringo and Spud for their latest round of injections. As you can see from the photo I took in the waiting room, although they were really good boys they were a bit wide eyed. It didn’t help that a dog in the surgery was screaming fit to bust. It was a packed waiting room and we were all cringing and wincing at the screams. The boys eyes were getting wider and wider! The quite a man emerged from the surgery with a very overweight dog who had obviously just had stitches removed, hence all the yowling. With the noise I was at least expecting it to have a leg missing.
A Long Wait
We had a long wait because of emergencies which gave me a chance to practice my Italian – including explaining the meaning of the name Spud (slang for potato in the UK) which had the Italians in fits of giggles. They kept saying how good the boys were being and I kept looking to see who they were talking about LOL.
Finally it was our turn, the boys have put on well over a kilo in a month and they didn’t flinch when they had their injections (to prevent heart worm). We arranged for them to have their goollies (another English slang word, this one means testicles!) removed next Thursday though we haven’t told them yet. The vet automatically wrote my details down on the form and one of the other staff members was laughing as we talked about our kittens Stevie Mouse and Emmy as they have all been involved in caring for them.
A reminder of Barnie
In the surgery we showed the boys one of my pieces that is on display above the xray screen at the vets. It is my portrait of Barnie. The staff at the vets spent a couple of weeks trying to save him earlier in the year. We were not the only ones in tears when we had to have him put to sleep. Anyway, we showed the boys the picture of their big brother. Then we came home with the grand plan to have lunch and have a rest.
A Return Trip To The Veterinary Clinic
However! Before we left for the vets we had seen one of the outside kittens (from the feral troop) looking like it was dead – I tried to pick it up but the Mum wouldn’t let me go near it. We thought we would try again when we got back. Sure enough the kitten had been abandoned and I was surprised to find it was still alive. But it was obviously on its last legs as it was only gasping for breath occasionally and covered in flies. I brought him in (his name is Wolfy, a lovely pale grey with color point tips) thinking that he could die in peace in our bathroom. But, and there is an element of deja vue with this as it happened with Stevie Mouse, the kitten didn’t die. It was bizarre as it seemed like he was dead and then he would take a shuddering breath. We kept saying it must be post death spasms. But they continued! Finally I thought this was too weird and took him to the vets.
The Kitten Wasn’t Dead!
First thing the vet said was that he was dead and this was post death spasms. I argued that I had been saying that for a while but Wolfy was still moving and I didn’t think he was dead. Further investigations found a really thready pulse. Cutting a long story short, hypoglycaemia and hypothermia as a diagnosis and he was in a coma! The vet couldn’t find a vein to give intravenous glucose so put honey in his mouth. He also had a cortizone injection.
The vet’s assistant and I then spent two hours trying to bring Wolfy back. My job was to keep the oxygen tube by his mouth. We took it in turns rubbing his body to stimulate his circulation whilst holding him on a hot water bag. It reached a point where we could actually feel his heart beating and he was breathing more regularly and moving his arms. We then made an ‘oxygen box’ using a cardboard box with a hole for the oxygen tube. Put hot water bags in the bottom and then put Wolfy on top wrapped in his little towel. The vet completed the admissions form without asking me for any details and said “everyone knows who you are” with a big grin,
Unfortunately Wolfy didn’t make it but we gave it our best shot! If only we had found him sooner – or his Mum had let us touch him sooner!
Before you go
My name is Dorothy Berry-Lound an artist and writer. You can find out more about my art and writing at https://dorothyberryloundart.com.
Thank you for reading!