working at an animal hospital

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Leslie
@leslie
4 years ago
14 posts

I am the office manager of a small animal veterinary hospital. I can feel the fear and nervousness of most (not all) dogs who come in for appointments. I interact with the ones who are receptive and offer them treats on their way out (a joyous occasion for them!) I often go back to the treatment area where the hospitalized and surgical patients are. I talk to them and use their name to try to reassure them. Several things bother me however. Every day there is a radio on and, depending on who the surgeon is, it is sometimes music that is not conducive to peace and healing. It's not blasting, but it's there. I've mentioned it and gotten the eye roll. I change their station to classical whenever they are out of the room. I see technicians setting a catheter for a euthanasia and they are talking and laughing to each other and the poor animal, who is usually quite sick and/or old, is shaking in terror. I've stepped in to try to comfort the pet to set an example (I have no power in this part of the hospital) and they look at me like I'm crazy. I am one of the oldest employees (55) and all the doctors are young enough to be my kids. I'm sure, unfortunately, that it's like this at most veterinary clinics. Ours is a good one, with good doctors and a large clientele. I just wish that there was a class on empathy and seeing things through their eyes that was required in the technician training school. These "kids" aren't heartless, just clueless. And the thing that floors me is that I appear to be the only one in the entire hospital who sees this and feels this way. Sometimes I have to go in the bathroom and cry. I've been off work for a week and have to go back tomorrow and I'm dreading it.


updated by @leslie: 05/09/17 01:45:31AM
Tami
@tami
4 years ago
81 posts
I totally understand. I've been in situations with people and animals (I work with the elderly) and I see things clearly on how they should be treated or how the situation could be different. It is saddening when others just don't see what we do. The animals (and some people) know the difference in who is more trustworthy, compassionate, etc. Sounds like you are their advocate. :) Hang in there, the animals need you.
Leslie
@leslie
4 years ago
14 posts

Thank you Tami. Bless you for working with the elderly. That is a special calling and not an easy one.

Leslie
@leslie
4 years ago
14 posts

Nancy, I am so sorry for the loss of your dear friend. It is surprising to people how it "goes down" sometimes. We have a special room called the "Comfort Room" which is nice (but I'd like to make it nicer). It is not at all like an exam room. Unfortunately we are in the practice of removing the pet to place a catheter. For older pets who may have collapsed veins this can be difficult so that is why they do it away from the people. That is the experience I hate and think could be done better in a quieter place. There are so many things I'd like to change there, but I seem to be up against a strong force. One of my co-workers left in tears yesterday because of something the practice manager (who is NOT an animal person and whose lack of compassion is chilling to me) said. I was sorry to see her so upset, yet happy to know that I have a kindred spirit that I hadn't recognized. I was exhausted both physically and mentally last night after going back, but I feel a new resolve today to change what I can. Thank you for your kind comments.

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