Tag Archives: kissing puppies

Kissing Puppies

17 Nov

2013-10-15 18.50.55This little puppy came in at 12 weeks old with pneumonia. It had aspirated its own vomit. It was touch and go for a while, but she made a full recovery and went home after a week of hospitalization. Everyone at the hospital fell in love with her, because, well, look at that face! Her owner was notorious for driving the doctors crazy with odd demands and overdramatics. I hadn’t experienced any of that though.

She brought the puppy in for a recheck exam about a week ago. Dr. S always meets with clients in an exam room and afterwards has a technician go to the room, retrieve the animal, and bring it to the larger treatment area for their full physical. After meeting with this woman, Dr. S came to treatment to tell me to get the dog.

“She might be a little difficult about it,” he warned me. “But don’t fight with her, just bring it back here. I’ve told her a million times that’s what we do here.”

So I head over to the room. The woman is sitting in the corner with the puppy on her lap, her cheeks shiny from an abundance of tears. I know I need to tread carefully.

“Oh, our girl has gotten so big! Still so cute though,” I say.
She clutches the dog closer to her.
“So, I’m going to take her to the back now for Dr. S to examine her,” I tell her, reaching for the dog. She places the dog in my arms, looking at me with suspicion.
“Do you *sniffle*…do you *sniffle*…do you kiss her when she’s back there?” she asks through her tears, in a quiet timid voice.

A word about this. No, I almost never kiss the animals that come to the back. I’ve seen too many dogs dance in their own shit, roll around in it, really get it in their fur. Because of this, my mouth does not touch them. The idea makes me cringe a little. I only kiss the patients I know very well. I only kiss my top 5. But this woman seemed distraught, and I wanted to reassure her.

“Oh course! We all love her. She’s such a good girl,” I say petting the puppy.
“Well, DON’T! I kiss my puppy. Not you. I do. I’ve been getting colds the last couple of weeks, and it’s from YOU PEOPLE kissing MY dog. You get your germs all over her.”

I’d already been given strict instructions not to fight with her. So I nod my head and make my way to leave the room.

“And tell everyone else to not kiss my puppy! Make sure to tell everyone!” she yells after me as I head down the hall.

I sigh. Just another day in the Upper East Side.