Busy schedule makes for an intense week
Published 6:26 am Sunday, September 26, 2021
That is the best word to describe my week.
It wasn’t a bad week, although it had some bad moments.
It wasn’t a great week, and yet it had great moments.
It was just intense.
Since I had been at the conference last week. Monday had more appointments than normal. Pets who needed seen or rechecked and the normal appointments.
Appointments ran smoothly, nobody waited too long, but it was steady and I didn’t get any work in my office done.
Besides it was the first day of school for M’Kinzy. Her last year at home. Barely a moment for a photo.
I did make time for an uncomfortable call. One of my financial accounts was not getting the care it needed and I was changing it. I had a strong relationship with them, but promotions and retirements had changed my representatives.
Monday was the day that I had set in my head to call them. Although my contact was now overall in charge, it was obvious he had been blind-sided. He would have done almost anything to keep me, but I did not want to be playing games.
It was too late. However, I felt bad enough for him that I had tears.
Without any time to recover, the contractor wanted questions answered and I was busy again.
Then Tiger came in during afternoon appointments. Tiger’s gums were white. I didn’t think Tiger would make it and told the owners. They wanted to try. Tiger’s packed cell volume was only 4 percent.
Anything less than 10 percent is not compatible with life.
We prepped a cat to donate blood for Tiger. Unfortunately, on the cross match of donor blood to recipient blood there was a strong reaction and serious autoagglutination. If we used that blood, Tiger’s reaction would kill him.
Luckily, we have a litter of older kittens for adoption and we got blood from a different cat. Unfortunately, Tiger’s blood reacted to this blood also. Cats have three different blood types. In the U.S., 97 percent of the cats are type A. Most of the rest are type B and a few are type AB. (There are no type O cats.)
Type B cats can usually survive one transfusion of type A blood, but something really was going on in Tiger’s system.
Since most of the antibodies are carried in the plasma, we spent an hour washing the blood cells of the donor cat. Draw off the plasma, add sterile saline, spin, mix, draw off the saline and repeat four times.
By the time we had the transfusion set up, it was rather late, so I took Zack and Carly to Crisp’s for dinner.
During the intensity of Monday, I looked at Tuesday’s surgery appointments wrong and added one that didn’t fit into the already full schedule.
I did tell the owners I wasn’t sure we could do it. Well, I also added Jaxon, but he was in pain from a broken tooth.
Although we worked efficiently, we did not have time for all the surgeries scheduled. I have never been one to rush through surgery.
In surgery, I do one thing. I do one thing well and then I move on. I would be devastated if my rushing meant harm to an animal.
And Tiger got more meds, but stayed on oxygen throughout the day.
Wednesday was also busy.
A text that Tiger had died started my day. After calling the owners, we started with Max’s surgery and dental cleaning early Wednesday morning.
Then we had an all-hands meeting about the items that we brought back from the American Veterinary Medical Association meeting.
Many things we discussed to help us do a better job serving clients and patients.
After the four-hour meeting, my staff learned about a new fecal exam technique and I headed to the bank to sign new loan documents.
Although it will save me quite a bit of money, it was somewhat surreal to hear “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” playing on the intercom as I signed my life away.
Thursday was another busy day.
Charlie, Brin, Millie, Bailey, Max, Minnie and Bella were all in for their annual visits. Each one got an individualized vaccination protocol, tests and a thorough physical exam.
Owners were taught about health risks (lots of dental disease and obesity) and preventative care. Sophia, Bo, Penelope and Percy got booster vaccinations, deworming and lessons on their puppy plans, while Barry and Selena graduated their kitten plans.
Gabe, Bubba and Ozzie were sick or needed acute medical treatment.
During “lunch,” we castrated a stray dog, so he could be adopted.
Luckily, Matt took the things I forgot from Wednesday to the bank for me. Somehow, Carly and I managed to set up texting for GAMC. Complex issues still will need a call, but refills, appointments and other things can be texted about.
Friday was a blur of appointments, surgeries and issues. I have been working hard on being present in the moment, but I think that I always give so much of myself to clients in the exam room and patients that afterwards it is only a memory of sustained intensity.
At the end of the day, the remaining artwork for my coloring book Pawsitivity was in. I was happy to finally relax on Friday night.
The group have become friends and we support each other. I did get busted because Cathie Shaffer had brought a copy of her newest release. I paid more attention to the note than the book and could not even tell the colors of the cover.
Busted, I owned up to the intensity of the week and bought a copy for my Kindle.I worked at the office for a few hours after the meeting and feel asleep reading the book.
Saturday’s appointments included a pup with parvo. And writing an article. And a writers’ business meeting. Oh, and moving. We are renting our house, hopefully to sell and that means at the end of every day, I have been packing.
More intensity. More change. Mostly good. Some not. Just intense.
MJ Wixsom, DVM MS is a best-selling Amazon author who practices at Guardian Animal Medical Center in Flatwoods, Ky. GuardianAnimal.com 606-928-6566