As a Veterinarian I am often asked ‘What would you do if this was your dog (cat)?’
That question actually does drive many of my decisions and recommendations. I strive to treat all pets like I would my own, which is not to say that I would always do EVERYTHING , but that I would always like to make an informed choice. So, given the career path I have chosen, my decision is informed—it is my job to make your decision informed as well.
What is the life of a vet’s dog like -better yet, a vet who is a single mom with 4 boys that are 10 and under. Annie, thank goodness, knows she needs to pick up the slack. But if you think vets are perfect pet owners…well…I certainly am not!! Here are some highlights of my imperfections:
- I exposed Annie at 8 weeks of age to Parvovirus. Yes, I did. Then I vaccinated her a lot, watched, prayed and all was good.
- I *may* not have kept her quiet for 2 weeks after her spay.
- My kids feed her, I feed her, not just dog food.
- I once left her in the van at Costco (it was November) for a long shop (over an hour) with the side door WIDE open. Luckily enough Annie LOVES the van, she didn’t stray and no one ventured in the van with her there.
- Occasionally myself, a grandparent, or a child leaves Annie in the front yard. If it is many hours (yes hours, sorry) she finds her way to my ex’s house a block away. God bless her.
- She often spends the day under my desk at work, and I often even forget to take her out at lunch.
- She is in many ways the perfect family dog, but she has started to not just bark as my doorbell (I could live with) but charge the door (NOT what I can live with).
Then there are the benefits of being a vet’s dog (I hope):
……as I read them I realize many are the benefits of being a dog of ANY good family…..
- She has always eaten good quality, well researched food.
- She is appropriately, though not excessively vaccinated.
- Lumps get cut off, nails get cut (she is not a fan of either).
- She is used to and has to live with many other feline and canine visitors—puppy parties, foster dogs, foster kittens, pets post-surgery for the night. She takes it all in stride.
- She is always on HW and flea prevention. At least when I remember.
- She will always have good dental health.
- She will have bloodwork done as a baseline, for trending and as needed as she ages.
- If she is sick (vomiting, diarrhea) she will be watched and treated if necessary.
- She gets exercise. Not just the backyard. Not just under my desk. It may not always be me doing it…..