“My Scooby doesn’t usually bite, so there is really no need for a muzzle!” If I had a firefly light up my room every time I heard that line even Owl city would not believe their eyes.
On a serious note though, this post is for those clients who show up at the vet’s clinic having googled and even diagnosed their pet. These clients will not allow the vet to handle their animal in a manner that does not seem fit to them. In short, these kind of clients call the shots! It doesn’t matter whether you are a veterinarian with 5 years’ experience or 30 years’ experience, if they think their neighbor poisoned their dog, then you better have the antidote otherwise if that dog does not get well after treatment; they will slander your name and blame it on you like Eve did on the serpent.
Then there are those racist clients who believe that if you are black then you must be the veterinary technician. They won’t allow a black veterinarian to get anywhere close to their pet because they have that racist perception and no matter how good you are at your job they will never believe that their pet recovered after seeing a black vet. They will never praise the good job you’ve done but will be quick to blame you when their pet has a terminal condition that you can’t cure.
I have a particular interest in the clients who think that their animal is the vets responsibility. These clients will call the vet to their house to do a physical on Whiskers their cat, because ‘he has been sleeping a lot lately.” When the vet arrives he finds whiskers up a tree and the client looks at the vet like, what are you waiting for, get up there and bring whiskers down. Other clients will have their dogs running around in the compound and expect the vet to restrain them. I mean c’mon, its just common sense to have your pet confined before the vet arrives.
And finally, the client who will bring their pet to you but in essence they brought themselves for counselling. I really feel for such clients because they have no one to talk to and the veterinarian offers a comfortable avenue for them to open up about their problems. It’s hard for veterinarians that have to listen and give advice because the relationship with such clients becomes complicated. For such clients, going to the vet becomes a lifestyle. They occasionally pop up at the vet clinic with their pets who are completely fine and talk about how they think their partners are having an affair and somehow blame the dog for it!
As a veterinarian, I really do not mind all these personalities because life is complicated and sometimes it’s not about treating the patient but the client as well.