If animals could talk | Boulder vet clinic

Aug 19, 2022

If animals could talk | Boulder vet clinic

In my opinion, one of the best qualities of dogs and cats is that they can’t talk.  Everyone else is talking all the time, and quite frankly it’s exhausting.  But not dogs and cats.  They are quiet company and aren’t incessantly yapping about every daily experience that didn’t go exactly as predicted.  They are present, and for the most part, don’t complain

That said, from a veterinary standpoint, it would be very helpful at times if they could complain (just a little) about their medical ailments.  Not a day passes in veterinary practice where we have no idea what’s going on with a patient.  I hate to admit it, but it’s true.  Sure, there’s always clinical signs that we can treat (diarrhea, lameness, anxiety, chronic foot licking, peeing all over the house, etc.).  But many times, it would be extremely helpful if they could just shed a little light on what’s going on.  For example…

Diarrhea:  “I ate a rotting rabbit carcass and my bowels feel like they are going to explode.”

Lameness:  “That rabbit I mentioned above…. well, four days ago I may have grabbed it and shook it a little harder than I should have.  In the process, I tweaked my lower back and it’s still pretty sore, hence the limp.  As mentioned, I found him again yesterday and ate him.  Sorry.”

Anxiety:  “I NEED EXERCISE!!!”

Chronic foot licking: “I’m bored and don’t have anything else to do.”

Peeing all over the house: “You moved the couch.  How dare you.” (This is a spiteful cat talking)

There can be good medical reasons for all the above that require diagnostics and treatment.  Many times, however, there’s a relatively simple solution that could save a lot of time and money if only we could get a rundown of the situation according to the pet.  Lameness in dogs especially.  So many dogs are limping around at home.

They come in to see us, quit limping the moment they realize they’re at the vet’s office, give us absolutely no indication of lameness on physical exam, then go home and keep limping.  Very frustrating.

As a veterinarian, I hate it when we can’t tell you what’s going on.  That said, most of the time this can be a good thing.  These problems often resolve without any intervention.  On the other hand, really sick, injured, or traumatized pets are fairly easy to spot, but these cases are usually more serious.

It’s the vague ones that make us feel like hacks.

It’s our job though to be honest and tell you when we can’t sort things out.  There’s always options and we do our best to explain why we’re thinking what we’re thinking, and what we can do next.

So, if you’re wishing your dog or cat could talk, you’re not alone – at least while in the veterinary hospital.  Outside of that, let’s all be grateful to have these wonderful creatures with severely limited vocabularies as our companions and leave the rest to interpretation.

If animals could talk | Boulder vet clinic | Rise Vet is Boulder’s new breed of veterinary care located in downtown Boulder.  Call us today to make an appointment for your pet.  We are located in the Ideal Market Plaza, right next to Sweet Cow Ice cream and are excited to open our doors to you and your pets.  We serve pet lovers in Boulder, Longmont, Louisville, Superior and surrounding Boulder County.