Thursday, February 16, 2012

False Impressions

I took Midge back in to see the vet, because my Corgi still seemed anxious and was urinating more than normal... and normal is a lot for her.  The doctor instructed me over the phone to not let her urinate for a few hours before her appointment, so that they could get a decent urine sample.  The poor dog was running around nervously panting because she needed to pee so bad that I took her in a little earlier than her appointment because I feared she was going to burst.  She normally pees at least once an hour during the day and every couple of hours during the night.  She's the reason why I can't hold down a full-time job outside the home.  I can't leave her outside for 8 or 10 hours where she's coyote bait, so I have to be home to let her in and out every hour.  She's been this way since she was a puppy.

The veterinary assistant took her right back while I sat in the waiting area.  I commented that Midge's bladder was ready to burst.  I've noticed that the staff in both doctor's and vet's offices seem to think that since they are behind walls, no one can hear their conversations, but the reality is that their voices carry into waiting rooms and examining rooms.  I've heard a lot of doctors and nurses say very unprofessional, catty things about their patients over the years, and that's part of the reason why I have to be really, really uncomfortable to see a doctor about anything.  (My condition has to be more uncomfortable than the staff can make feel uncomfortable with their comments.)  In the vet's office, I could hear the veterinary assistant complaining that Midge was "dry" and that "her owner must have lied and let her pee."

I got annoyed with that.  I figured the dog was just so tense that she couldn't pee.  They must have eventually been able to get a sample, because they found that she still has blood in her urine, just as I suspected.  They put her on another round of antibiotics.  The doctor came out and gave me the third degree about if I "really" was giving Midge her medication twice a day.  She asked me how I did it, how Midge behaved, etc.  I said the only time she may not have gotten her full dose was when she vomited half an hour after eating dinner and getting her pill. 

The doctor told me that Midge should be able to sleep through the night without having to pee.  I explained (for the second time) that she had never been able to hold it and we've tried to train her not to wake us up, but nothing worked, so we resigned ourselves to just getting up to let her out multiple times a night.  The doctor then accused me of being at fault for Midge's behavior of always having to pee, because I conditioned her to go outside every hour.  I explained my training methods and informed her that Midge does indeed pee to beat the band when I let her outside, and she changed the subject.  I started feeling like perhaps the vet should be looking at the possibility that Midge may have some underlying condition that causes her to urinate more often than most dogs, even when she doesn't have an infection.  I was disappointed that the vet was too busy making judgements about me.

The doctor told the receptionist to ring me up and give me Midge's next round of medication.  Right then a pharmaceutical salesman came in and took up several minutes of the receptionist's time, followed by a woman who wanted to buy one can of cat food.  She said that she wasn't a regular customer at this office, she sees a different vet across town, but didn't have time to stop at her own vet's office.  I wanted to say, "Perhaps if you buy more than one can of cat food at a time, you wouldn't be so busy."

After that a man came in with some paperwork, and the receptionist helped him while I waited for him to get around to ringing me up.  Then a couple with two dogs showed up, and they began chatting with the receptionist about mundane things.  I started getting angry, because I was there before any of these people, and the receptionist was treating me like I was invisible.  I hadn't taken my medication to control my tremor, so between that and me getting angry, my head was shaking really badly.

The lady with the dog just stared at the side of my head.  I guess she thought I didn't have peripheral vision, because she wasn't shy about staring at me.  I wanted to snap at her and say, "Lady, I get stared at enough by my nosy neighbors.  Do you have to add to it?"

Thankfully, the veterinary assistant took the couple with the dogs into an examining room.  Then two young boys came charging in and began chatting casually with the receptionist.  I was about ready to leave and tell him to call me when he's not so busy, and I'll come back to pay for my services.  I think all receptionists should handle customers in the order that they come in or call, with the exception of emergencies.  He did have one emergency when a doctor came out of the back room and asked him to call a client to get verbal approval for surgery, but all of these other people could have waited until he had completed my transaction.

He finally rung me up and I got home feeling like I had just had a very unpleasant experience between the assistant accusing me behind my back of lying, the doctor not believing that I gave my dog every pill on schedule, and the receptionist treating me like I was lower on the totem pole than salespeople, random cat food buyers, and friends.  I began wondering what it is about me that makes people treat me poorly.  I've always thought that I just live in a low class area with few true professionals, but I began to entertain the idea that there might me something about me that makes people treat me with disrespect.  I got very philosophical about the whole thing, and then walked into my daughter's room to look out the window and check on the horses.  On the way there, I stepped in something wet.

Sigh.  Midge DID pee.  It was just behind my back on the carpet!  So, her bladder WAS dry and that set the stage for the entire staff at this veterinary clinic to not trust me.  Geez.  Leave it up to a little Corgi to make me look bad.


appydoesdressage said...

How discouraging. I hope you go back and everyone gives each other another chance. I would recommend writing a note saying when you were there last that the receptionist was very inattentive on X date at X time. Hopefully that will get them to remind their staff who is important.

I also know, however, it may take a little while for the accounting part to be done before the bill is presented to the receptionist. At my old vet it was all by hand and could take almost 5 mins. Don't know the situation but just a thought!

Jeni said...

That is still no excuse for unprofessionalism.

Hopefully midge feels better soon.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

Sometimes vets don't realize how hard it is to follow their suggestions. Obviously, Midge did what she needed to do.
Do you have a fenced area so that you could put her outside? I have a coyote proof dog run but I couldn't put my little Buddha out because of the hawks and owls.He was only 4 1/2 pounds and could easily be snapped up.

Tina said...

Dang...I would be finding a new vet pronto.

Cut-N-Jump said...

All of that might give me plenty of apt reasons to find a new vet. I understand shuffling the paperwork takes time, writing things up, etc. and a vets office can be busy, but sheesh.

I can also understand that the clients may fake interest in what is really wrong with their pets, not give meds properly and all of that, but everyone? Yeah, I don't think so.

I second the notion to write them a brief note and describing what happened. All of it from what you could hear through the walls to being last on the list of the receptionists attention. It is tough to pay the damn bill if you don't know what it is.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

What a mess....literally!


achieve1dream said...

Aww that sucks!! What losers at the vet clinic! That is completely unprofessional. I don't give a crap what their stupid opinions are you don't treat customers like that!!!

I would look for another clinic, especially since they won't figure out what's wrong with more Midge. Have you had her checked for diabetes? I know frequent peeing can be a symptom.

Don't let those losers get to you. They were probably having a bad day and just picked you to take it out on. Their opinions don't make you who you are. You know you're a great person and a great pet owner, so just ignore them. :)