The long ‘dog’s day work’ was coming to an end. When I was preparing to wind up my clinic for the night, telephone rang. It was not only a dog’s day night I was also ‘tired like a dog’ and even considered not attending the call but by practice I picked up the phone. The caller was Mrs Appos who was known to me for quite some years. She clarified agitatedly that her poor dog Romy had swallowed the tablets for migraine, prescribed to her by her doctor. She was in panic and expressed her helplessness. I enquired the time of consumption of the tablets by her dog and she replied that that was about ten minutes earlier.
I promptly asked her to hurry to the clinic at once.
After fifteen minutes she rushed in with Romy, the red Pomeranian, in her arms. I collected the details from the medicine packet and contacted the Poison centre. A lady answered the phone and I sought the process for treatment if at all any ill effect might have caught up with the system of the body of the dog by that particular drug. The lady could not give me a convincing answer. I kept the phone down in frustration and prepared myself to examine the dog.
Romy was bouncing like a rubber ball on the floor of the clinic. Mrs Appos found it difficult to control her dog. I was certain that the medication had begun to affect the brain. I administered a sedative injection to begin the treatment and got it admitted in the clinic. Romy’s condition improved during the night and I could discharge him the next day.
Few days after this episode, we at the clinic received a phone call. My nurse passed on the receiver to me while reporting that a distressed woman wanted to speak to the doctor. No sooner had I said hello, the lady started to speak about the ‘morning after pill’ which she had taken. After taking the tablet that day, she started vomiting. Without giving me a chance to intervene and speak, she went on reporting on her birth control methods and wanted my advice on whether she should take another pill.
During that non-stop pouring for about five minutes I could not get to her at all. Finally she put a full stop to her monologue on which I replied that I was not a physician for treating human beings and I was a veterinarian. She tendered her apologies to me so many times which clearly emphasized her embarrassment.
As in the case of ‘dog consuming human medicine’ this is a humorous incident showing a mix-up between a vet and a doctor.
Similarly, later, while reading a medical journal I found an interesting anecdote. An elderly couple had approached a doctor for advice. The woman was a dependent on hormone replacement therapy. In that connection, she had to see the doctor frequently. After the consultation with the wife, the doctor turned to the husband for a small talk and enquired about his life. The husband replied that he was doing well but for his swollen breasts.
The doctor was surprised since at an age of seventy that phenomenon was quite unusual on him. After expressing his concern over this, the doctor began examining the gentleman. . He stripped the patient below the waist for examination and to his astonishment, found a patch on his hip.
‘The hormone replacement therapy (HRT) which should have been on your wife’s hip has found its way to yours and as result your breasts have swollen.” The doctor remarked
A goofy grin was the patient’s response to the doctor.
From the medical gaffe of that couple, it is obviously clear that medicines applicable to human beings should not be given to dogs as well medicine for women folks should not be recommended to men.