2001-Fri Apr 20 08:52:42 EDT 2018
Vetstreet. All rights reserved. Powered by Brightspot.
Vetstreet does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. See Additional Information ›
Imagine that you've just graduated from veterinary school a few months ago, and you’ve finally progressed to a point in your internship where your presiding resident thinks you’re capable of flying solo on an overnight shift.
That is, until you receive your first client of the evening: a cat owner who wants to tax your no-longer-insubstantial skills only as far as your way with a syringe full of euthanasia solution is concerned. What’s worse is that when you perform the obligatory physical examination, it becomes clear that this prospectively dead patient is a perfectly healthy feline specimen.
The rationale behind the request? (Owners always supply one or more reasons for engaging in this kind of drastic activity.) In this case, the predominant complaint: Said cat would not let the owner or her husband sleep, urinated inappropriately on expensive furniture, and — sin of all sins — refused to live outside, preferring to yowl at the door to regain entry than “enjoy his freedom.”
Why a cat would want to be let back into a household willing to do away with him is beyond me, but I’m given to understand that abusive relationships are complex beyond most uninitiated individuals' ability to fathom.
In any case, the intent of the office call was obvious: “Kill my cat and, if possible, make me feel better about my wanting to do it.”
With this information in mind, perhaps you can understand why I apply such harsh, judgmental language to cases like this one. But, in case you need more explaining, here’s some background.
You’d be surprised at how often veterinarians are asked to end an animal’s life for no good reason. In fact, not a month or two goes by that one of the three vets at my office isn’t asked to make a healthy animal less of a problem for one of our clients by effectively doing away with them.
Here are some common scenarios for your consideration:
This cat attacks the others. There’s no way that I can let these three sweet things suffer the wrath of Brutus the Bully. He’s ruining their lives!
She’s so nervous that I never see her anyway. What kind of a life could she possibly be living? And all those poopies underfoot! Disgusting! That’s no life. It’s for the best.
He hates my husband. He bites him every single time that he swats his nose with a newspaper. Makes me wonder why he keeps doing it. Why won’t he learn? We’ve tried everything [a naked falsehood], and we just can’t handle the aggression anymore.
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Take our breed quiz to find your next pet.
Bartonella is a type bacteria that can be transmitted to cats, dogs and humans from exposure to infected fleas and…
Want to give your pup yummy, low-calorie treats? We’ve got the skinny on which foods are OK to feed him.
Not sure about food puzzles? Our veterinarian reveals why the payoff for your pet is well worth any extra work.
With these simple dental care tips, you can help keep your canine’s adorable smile shiny and healthy for life.
The friendly and inquisitive LaPerm has an easy-care coat that comes in a variety of colors and patterns.
Check out our collection of more than 250 videos about pet training, animal behavior, dog and cat breeds and more.
Wonder which dog or cat best fits your lifestyle? Our new tool will narrow down more than 300 breeds for you.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.