Saturday, September 27, 2014

A superstitious and a mad vet? Yup, that's me the vet Dr Liz from Bellambi!

Do you have a superstitious vet in your neighbourhood? My neighbourhood is very lucky as they have a Mad Vet and a superstitious one - in the one body in the shape of Dr Liz (which is me).

What are some of my more common superstitions or situations that are beyond normal belief?

Be Careful not to Jinx

There are some phrases that a vet should never say to a pet owner.  Unfortunately, these are often the same phrases that every pet owner may want to hear.

So I touch wood every time I say "things will be fine" when I have a concerned owner.  And so far, it has worked.

Putting a bandage on a sore foot without sending extra bandaging material home is a sure fire guarantee that the bandage will come off within 5 minutes of leaving the building.

A less common jinx is giving a dog or cat a vaccination, but forgetting to ask if there were any previous reactions, only to find out 2 seconds after administration that the pet was "off colour" for a day or two previously at another vet hospital.

 Murphy's law states that the one pet who you forget to ask, is the one pet who you needed to know the information!

The Ghost of Bellambi Lane

There is such a long history of the building that now houses Russell Vale , that it should be no surprises that there is a mischievous spirit around the vet hospital ( Pandora our boss, is not the only one).  It was built in 1895 to be the Bellambi Post Office and General Store. The building is actually a group of separate buildings joined together by extensions, to eventually form one big building. What a history! 

We have had objects fall of the top of bookshelves, things go missing and then turn up elsewhere.

I have heard footsteps late at night when I have slept over, and a few other strange occurrences

Can our pets sense this other spirit?  I suspect they can - there are some mornings where everyone seems a bit skittish, including me. So I blame the ghost on these days. (it can't be the fact that we are a vet hospital :).

I like to think of this ghost as a bit of mischievous spirit, as it doesn't seem to mean any harm (most days).

The Vein god

Everyone who has to try to take blood from any living creature, has had days where the blood has no intention of flowing down the needle or catheter.
This little critter has no problem getting blood out of anything.
If only it was that easy some days at the vet hospital!

Many of us lift a silent prayer to the "Vein gods" every time we need to draw some blood.  Sometimes they are smiling, and it goes smoothly, and on some days it's a struggle.

Taking out two catheters or two syringes and needles, when you really need one seems to satisfy the "Vein gods" most days.

Oh, and we never push our luck in saying... " this vein looks great" as that is a sure fire guaranteed way  to convert the vein wall into a slippery snake that wont be penetrated.  When the vein looks great, its best to keep the mouth shut until its over.

The Quiet Day

Every vet dreads the quiet day, and its not for reasons that you may think.  No one likes to sit around twiddling their thumbs, waiting for the clock to tick over to "go home" time.  For most vets, there is always something to do, like research information, or make follow up  phone calls

What is a universally known fact in the veterinary profession, is that on a "quiet day", there is a very high probability of a sick pet coming in five minutes before closing time.

And we could even bet money that the pet had been sick for 4 days or longer, with the common phrase of "we thought we would give it a few days to get over it". More often than not, you are spending the next five hours doing all of the tests and treatment to save this pet.

Sometimes leaving them a day or two just is not the right thing to do.

Never say "We haven't seen (insert name here) for a while"

"We haven't seen you for a while"
Most vets will relate to this one - our brains never stop whirring, from the sick dog or cat we saw the day before, or three years before.  Our minds are constantly on the go, as we wonder how so and so has gone.  Just because we don't call, doesn't mean we aren't thinking of you.

Many a time, though, Dirk and I will say to each other " we haven't see XYZ for a while, and no sooner, do XYZ turn up". 

We try not to do that too often for the rare dog that wants to eat us.

Happy "three"day!

Things happen in three's

Itchy pets, anal glands, blocked cats or any other common condition often happens in 3's. When you have your first or second, you feel bad that a third pet has to suffer to fulfil the "things happen in three's" rule.

Interestingly, that the conditions are different for individual vets.  For some it may be 3 pyometrons or GDV( twisted stomach), for others it may be anal gland abscesses or blocked cats. For me, it varies.  At the moment it is mammary tumours and urinary tract infections.

I am Dr Liz, the mad (and superstitious) vet of Bellambi.  Thanks for reading and sharing (and commenting too).