Patience and Patients

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Checking out the exam room

First, the good news.  Sissy had her 6-week, local eye exam yesterday and her pressures appear to be fine.  (Readings of 4, 4, 3, but read on…  I’m not sure how accurate they were.)  Gg went along to meet the vet and to provide moral support, and she did really well.  Ironically, Sissy is more relaxed when her travel-anxiety-fied little sister is with her, so we’ll be traveling en masse more often, with the blessings of both veterinary practices.

Now… the not ideal part, where I need your feedback.  In another twist of irony, it actually costs more to have the local vet check Sissy’s eye pressure, if you look solely at the price for said exam/visit.  Now, as the eye clinic is over 100 miles away, my time and fuel costs become factors, but still.  When you add in the big hole Wondervet left and the lack of proficiency with the tonometer (the eye pressure measurer) at the local vet, the Knight (fairly so) has asked if these local checks are worth the trouble.

You should also know that even when she’s drooly and stressed (which she wasn’t yesterday), Sis wins awards for her patience and cooperation.  I don’t know where she gets it from, because bassets are not patient by nature, nor do the Knight or I model said behavior with any success.   So naturally, my darling girl just hung in there and let the vet and the tonometer tap on her only eye for what seemed like hours on end…

The vet thanked all of us for our patience (my father is laughing HARD in Heaven…  again… I’m not known for said virtue), but even before the Knight asked his question, I had decided to see if other vets in this area have a tonometer.

I *do* realize that as with any skill, tool, etc., a local vet who doesn’t check eye pressures all day, every day, isn’t going to have the same ease and technique even the newest vet tech at the eye clinic has. 

But.

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The DIVA can be a grump

This is where I need your input.  At what point does my girl’s comfort level become THE issue?  Sis used to love going to the vet, but in the past year (so the second year of regular eye exams), she’s become withdrawn and the vets and techs who knew her when she was a bubbly hot mess miss her, and we all are very sorry we’ve pushed her to this point, even in the name of eye health.

One dear friend suggested offering Sissy as a training opportunity … at no cost to us, but upon further reflection, I don’t want to make that offer.  We’re obviously already tromping all over the DIVA’s sweet, benevolent nature. 

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Normal DIVA position at the vet’s

I don’t feel I should have to remind the vet that Sis likes to sit on the (human) bench.  I don’t mind assisting, but I’ve never had to with any of the other vets who have checked her pressure, even during the scary, pressure uncontrolled days before her left eye was removed.

So… at what point is calm and communicative just not enough?  After all, this is the DIVA we’re talking about…

Update –  Big THANKFUL for Eye Care for Animals.  I’m not even linking to our local location, because two of the vets we’ve seen and loved are not even based in Virginia.  I have now learned that it is ALMOST impossible to falsify a LOWER pressure reading, so at least what we did get yesterday was likely accurate.   I want that locally… a tech who knows who I am, knows my dog, and is willing to spend time with me right before a holiday, and is willing to be a part of whatever solution I come up with, including coming here to do a “lunch & learn” with our local vet/techs.

And yes.  I wrote “tech” and meant it.  The techs at Eye Care for Animals are better trained than some veterinarians in general practice offices.   I’ve NEVER felt the need to demand a doctor when I call in for advice!

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9 Responses to “Patience and Patients”

  1. Pre-Thankful « Chan Knits Says:

    […] post on the girls’ blog was draining, so pardon me if I take the easy way out here.  Tomorrow is […]

  2. Karen Says:

    I would drive the 100 miles. Her comfort level and care are your first priority. Yes, it would be nice and easy to go local but not at her expense. As the mother of a special needs child who long ago outgrew the local hospitals and doctors, I totally understand. I don’t want my child to be the guinea pig after everything he has been through. That means lots of trips out of state for care because we are not dealing with “normal”. So there is my answer. Doesn’t matter if said child has skin or fur <3.

  3. gmariesews Says:

    Oh Darlin’ I wish I had answers. First and foremost I think our dogs comfort level and care are ALWAYS our first priority. I adore Dr. Throm, but I will not make any more appointments for Beau to see him. He was entirely too stressed out and after Lucy ‘seeing things that aren’t there.’ Sorry, neither of us need the stress, honestly. Beau is a ladies man and adores Dr. R and I know I’ve shared that JB has a wee crush on her too – so, while I prefer my dogs be comfortable with all the vets in our office, I won’t force the issue. In a true emergency, whoever is available will do the trick nicely.

    Call around, ask the big bad vet for new referrals. Sissy however is the patient and her comfort comes first, regardless.

    g

  4. Katie Says:

    Well, I think you should drive the 100 miles but I know some techs at the Eye Care place and they LOVE Sissy. Hugs!

  5. km Says:

    Given how much you’ve taught yourself to be the best doggy mamma you can be, could you just purchase the tool and learn yourself??? We know that Holly is not likely to let a vet examine her teeth well, so I pick around in her mouth a lot because she lets me. She loves her toothbrush. And then if you made it a monthly ritual, you could make the 100 mile trek when your readings were off. Given the vet’s inexperience, your own tests could not be much worse.

  6. Nichole Says:

    I would say if you’re even thinking of and considering the option, that is your answer right there… you’ve reached the point.

  7. Mom Says:

    km, it sounds like you know “doggy mamma’s” ability! Your sugestion sounds so wise!

  8. Susan Says:

    Any chance one of the techs or vets from the eye practice lives on “your side” of the practice and would be willing to meet you a little closer to do the checks? Just a thought. Probably a long shot.

    Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

  9. Jed & Abby in MerryLand Says:

    We’re behind as has become the norm, but we agree: if you’re asking the question, you already know the answer. Can Gg stand the 100 mile drive as companion? Is that one way or round trip? Still, if Sissy is getting depressed about going, time for a change. Not quite clear if it’s just the eye pressure check or all medical visits that are causing stress for Sissy. If it’s all visits – run, don’t walk.

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