How To Piss Margaret Off

This is a post about vets. About boarding animals. About having good employees.
Actually it’s about Margaret.

Nothing like a good roll-around!
Nothing like a good roll-around!

Margaret went to a local vet around the corner when we flew to Kuching. We had to put her there for a week of boarding (or cat and dog hotel to you and me).
To tell you the truth, I dislike this vet’s clinic though it’s so near to us.
The clinic is small and cramped. Customers and their pets either sit in a sad, dismal row or if you have a big dog like a Labrador, you’d better wait outside the clinic. You have so little space to maneouvre yourself around, not to mention a huge canine.
But we go to this place because of sheer convenience. Travelling in a moving car is not Margaret’s idea of fun – she wails and mews all the way. Car journeys make her woozy. This is the shortest journey for her – 5 minutes and she’s there.
Don't look at my fat tummy you!
Don't look at my fat tummy you!

The problem started when we went to pick her up on Monday morning.
The receptionist looked sleepy and grumpy. Funnily, she asked what colour our cat was.
Give me Margaret and let me get out of this place.
We pass the pet carrier to the young guy who disappears upstairs (where the ‘hotel’ is). A couple of minutes later, he reappears with the carrier and like a magic show, there’s a Persian cat inside it!
That’s not Margaret!
He’s sheepish but unfazed. He nods and goes upstairs again.
Now what if I wanted to catnap a cat? Easy. Just walk into this vet’s clinic, pass the assistant a carrier and pretend I’m here to collect my cat and then run away with a prized Persian!
Minutes later, he comes down again, looking worried. Without the pet carrier. With a glove in hand.
He whispers and asks us to follow him upstairs. Apparently, Margaret scratched him and refuses to get into her pet carrier.
So we go up with him to investigate. Margaret is a docile and fat tabby. She runs and hides when our newspaper man comes around to collect newspaper money. She won’t even attack if provoked. She’ll just hiss and look pissed but she really is a big wuss.
He leads us to a small room where cages are lined up on shelves against the wall. Other cats look freaked out too. Margaret is in a corner, hackles raised, fear in her eyes.
We had to pet her and calm her down before she was willing to get into her carrier.
And then we realized why the stupid boy was scratched.
The Persian cat had urinated in Margaret’s carrier! With such a stink, it was no wonder Margaret refused to get into her carrier. You see, cats are highly territorial and any alien smell is as good as being attacked! She must’ve thought there was another cat in the carrier and so freaked out completely.
Now tell me, is that something a vet clinic’s assistant does not know? You bloody work with animals and YOU DON’T KNOW simple animal psychology?
In the end, Nic had to rinse out the pet carrier and wipe it before Margaret could be coaxed into it.
I had wanted to let her get her shots done at this clinic too but after this stupid incident, we just couldn’t wait to get out of the clinic.
We drove to GS Gill’s vet clinic at Gottlieb Road (yes it’s far and yes it was a bit of a wait for Margaret) after that so she could be checked and given her shots. What a huge difference at GS Gill’s. Dr Gill is always cool and patient with animals; Margaret is always calm at his examining table and before she knew it, he had examined her and given her a dose of injection. That’s what I call a true vet.
I also go in armed with questions and he patiently answers them all, without batting an eye.
Margaret’s now back to normal and eating healthily though her Monday was truly awful and traumatizing.
Lessons to be learnt here: if you’re a vet, hire people who love animals to work with animals. Not morons who don’t know the first thing about animals and traumatize them!
I don’t think I’m going back to this vet on Jalan Sungai Dua!