Clinic Stories

Mrs. Fern & a Novel Idea

Mrs. Fern was prone to dramatics. Her four cats had unusual names and even more unconventional nick names. They were a handful for even the best of owners but the combination of advancing age and her husband’s death made their care even more of a struggle. Pangurban and Clairette, also known as the Alpine Drive Slasher for her combative nature, were the easy ones. The diabetic litter mates, Topsy and Turvey, presented a greater challenge. She was always confusing them so that Topsy would receive Turvey’s higher insulin dose and become hypoglycemic. A desperation call would follow - “Ruth Fern! Ruth Fern! Emergency! Emergency!” Translated, this meant Topsy was nearing a coma and she was on her way, that is, as soon as she could get a ride. We would dutifully give him dextrose and bring him back to consciousness, then offer advice to avoid future mix ups.

Naturally, the cats had to come in regularly for exams and blood work. Appointment times were merely an approximation, 2 PM meant sometime that afternoon to allow her time to corral and transport her charges. But her crowning remark had definite potential. “This is Ruth Fern. I have an appointment but I can’t find Turvey. Do you have a heat seeking device I could borrow?” Today you can get GPS for your pet, but why stop there? Perhaps an infrared camera or night vision goggles could give you the security of knowing you can always locate your cat.

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