Monday, 14 September 2009

Lost Dog, Needs Medicine

co·in·ci·dence (k-ns-dns, -dns)
1. The state or fact of occupying the same relative position or area in space.
2. A sequence of events that although accidental seems to have been planned or arranged.

Cases of lost dogs are not uncommon in our community. Once, I even participated in a search and rescue mission( well, it was just me and the maid) that was for all intents and purposes, a search for a needle in the haystack. Imagine my delight with the case of Bamboo*, the next door labradude who went missing approximately two weeks ago and was reunited with his family last Sunday due to sheer good luck.

On Sunday, a black adult labrador went to our pet clinic for routine vaccinations and deworming. According to the client, her dog named "Bart"* went MIA for six months and only reappeared last week. Clueless of what had happened to Bamboo, the Animal Doc did not notice anything strange with this new patient. It was at that moment, however, when one of Bamboo's humans passed by our clinic. She was always interested with the happenings inside the pet clinic, but this time she saw and heard someone very, very familiar.

What followed was a scene reminiscent of a story in the Bible. Two women fighting over a black labrador: one had tears in her eyes, pleading that the labrador was the family dog Bamboo; and the other, had a death grip on the leash, insisting that the labrador was her long lost dog Bart. The Animal Doctor was too bewildered to be Solomonic. In the end, the client managed to walk out with the labrador.

Dismayed, our neighbors ( the entire family) pleaded for the Animal Doctor to give them his client's address. This was one of those sticky situations when the Animal Doctor would seek my legal opinion. But this was not just about the legality of disclosing client information. I knew how AWFUL our neighbors must have felt, I once lost a pet too. Even as a human, I found myself emphatizing with Bamboo and feeling his helplessness at not being able to say "yes, its me Bamboo, please get me!"

It was a good thing that when I checked, there was no Philippine law nor jurisprudence mandating client confidentiality in the practice of veterinary medicine.

Bamboo's family and the client were able to negotiate in a civilized manner, thank God. The latter only asked for a reimbursement of veterinary expenses incurred for "Bart". That rainy evening, the labradude known in our neighborhood as Bamboo returned, his deep howls filling Mimosa Street once more.

* Names of the dogs were withheld to protect their privacy and that of their humans.

Not all stories have happy endings. I hope you never have to put up a sign like this in your whole life.

by: The Secretary


  1. I was just what extent is microchipping done in the Phillipines? Here in SA it is encouraged heavily. All my dogs are microchipped. If they get lost, all SPCA's are able to scan them and obtain records of ownership. I realise that not all animals have chip, but was just curious as to what you guys do?
    Lots of licks

  2. Glad that story had a happy ending.
    Kisses and hugs

  3. Wow, that must have been difficult being in the middle of that situation. I'm glad you were able to resolve it peacefully, and that Bamboo got to return to his family.



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