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A cat died on my table today. Im so upset!

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  • A cat died on my table today. Im so upset!

    Last edited by ruthie lee riley; 05-23-07, 07:40 AM. Reason: I would like to retract my post.

  • #2
    you make the owner get them there right away. There is no way to unhitch that quick. Another reason I don't do cats.
    If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!


    • #3
      Wow, I am so sorry. I agree with you, that the grooming should have stopped, put yourself in the cats place. If a cat is stressing out and will not come out of a cage and then all of the "junk" hooked up to him think how terrified he was, most don't understand what we are doing to them and had no idea what was coming next, then with the dog that probably topped it off. I am not a big cat person. I did 3 cat shavedowns today with several dogs in the shop including my own 2 running around, but these cats that I was grooming are from multiple dog houses and are used to it. I always make sure I ask that question before booking them on a busy day. Way before I started grooming I remember my mom hearing a story of a cat being basically scared to death by a dog being put in the next cage.

      Now on the subject of running them to the vet. I often think of this too. I am in my shop by myself most of the time with my small child. How could I ever try to revive an animal get the baby in the car and drive 12 miles to the vet......... I am sure there are many more people in this situation also hopefully someone has some advice. I am sure alot of you mobiles groom without the owner being home also.


      • #4
        ruthie,I first want to say how sorry I am that this happened to you ,and for the cat and the owner.There is a stopping point in a groom when it is time to say enough is enough,and this poor kitty tried to tell you.I know that this has been a tough day for you and one that you will never forget. I think in the the back of your mind you also had an idea that you needed to stop,but due to job preasure,being "pushed",you did what you were told to do.I hope that if something like this ever happens again you will say,"enough is enough";even if your job is at stake.If you really think you would get fired for safe garding the health and saftey of a pet who was in jepardy,then it would be a place I would not want to be working or in anyway associated with.You and the family will be in my thoughts and prayers.


        • #5
          How awful

          I've groomed many years and not had any die yet. I just can't imagine your feelings, as you knew it shouldn't have had more done. Did that boss say, "oops, guess you were right?" I had a manager insist I leave a dog alone on a table with just a loop while assisting another groomer. I did walk away, and felt so dumb. Nope. That helped me get out that door.

          I'm so sorry, I know you did your best and will not ever be pushed in that situation again. It was great that the owner was reasonable, not sure I would have been.

          Virtual hugs sent.

          It could be real hard mobile with such an emergency and if no one responsible is home. I do housecall, no trailer, and often the owner is right there, so that is good. Sometimes though it's just the maid, or the owner is very feeble. I guess I ought to find out the Vets near those customers for emergency possibilities.
          Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.


          • #6
            You're the professional, you make the decisions. I would NEVER try to push a stressed animal through a grooming.


            • #7
              I worked at a vets clinic for several years and we used to groom alot of cats and I have seen alot of mad cats and scared ones but I was always taught that a panting cat is a dead cat...if a cat pants that is a BIG warning sign and should be put away in a quiet place and left alone ( check on it every few minutes of course!) In it's carrier ready to go home and call owner! Cats give themselves heart attacks. Some cats are also born with a defect called Cardio Myopathy ( sp?) which is when the walls of the heart are thickened and the heart has to work extra hard to pump blood. ( Unfortunately the only way to know would have been an autopsy) Usually those cats don't make it through minor surgeries or past 5 yrs. of age. I am sorry that you were put into that situation...lesson learned the hard way....always go with what you know is right. I know it can be hard but they are now looking at a potential law suit....not worth the money made on the groom ( assuming they charged?!) Poor owners, very sorry for their loss.



              • #8
                Sorry you had to go through that

                I too do not agree with the way some employers force you to perform things such as these that are uncomfortable. I simply draw the line where my comfort level ends and if they want to boot me so be it. I hope the person that told you to continue had as ****** a night as you. I'm glad the owner was understanding.

                I too am thinking about opening my own spa and would have to be on my own at first and I am worried about emergency issues. A couple of ideas I had was to try and line up a couple of pet sitters who you can maybe use as taxi's in an emergency or talk with vets and see if maybe they could do something to help you get an animal there quick in an emergency.

                I know I don't want to open without knowing what I'm gonna do in an emergency since you can't leave all the other animals in your shop alone.

                We did have one tranquilized cat die of a heart attack in a drying cage at the first place I worked. I didn't even see it and it was sad.


                • #9
                  I am sooooo sorry that this happened to you. I know how sad you are. I had this happen to me about 2 years ago. I was devastated. I cried for days. Since then, I have stopped grooming cats. It will take time to get over it, but I do think of it often.


                  • #10
                    I am so sorry for you, as i have had a dog die on me i do understand what you are going through. you did all that you could. not all groomers know cpr. there may have been underlying health issue also.
                    Certified Master Pet Tech Pet CPR, First Aid and Care Instructor
                    "Compassion will cure more sins than condemnation." Henry Ward Beecher US Congregational Minister 1813-1887


                    • #11
                      Where are the owners (your bosses) guidelines?

                      Dear Ruthie,

                      So sorry for your loss, the owners loss and the cat. It did not deserve such an end. You did not deserve to be guided to finish the groom to such and end. A tragedy for everyone.

                      Where is the owners (your bosses) responsibility in this for not having a strict policy for not purposly injuring pets?

                      They are more then responsible. Not haveing a policy to protect you or their clients pets from injury is "Gross Negligence" on their part. How many pets have they over restrained or injured with their "Groom them all no matter what policy"?

                      I realize that you have to make a living but you have a responsibility to yourself to "Protect and Save" your clients pets no matter what. How many people died at the hands of others who said "I was just following orders?"

                      Make it a personal policy of "Never Again" even if it means your job.



                      • #12
                        With cats, I ALWAYS tell the owner I will do no more than the cat will tolerate. It's just too dangerous (to both the cat AND the groomer) to "push" a cat. I tell them in very clear terms that their cat may not look perfect--and the groom may well not be finished if the cat shows signs of excessive stress/annoyance. With dogs, you can usually demand they be still for 5 more minutes, but not cats. I've sent cats home as-is (and charged for what I've gotten done) in just about every stage of the grooming process. Their safety (and MINE) are far more important than the owner's vanity--or my losing part of a commission for that one groom.

                        Your employer aparently doesn't know cats if she doesn't follow the above guidelines that most cat groomers do.

                        I also split my time--between a veterinary hospital and a mobile service. And I've often said to myself that I need to sit down with my mobile employers and discuss what the policy/procedure is if there is a mishap during the grooming.
                        Last edited by k9stylist1968; 05-23-07, 11:57 AM.


                        • #13
                          Legal, legal legal.... So sorry about the death

                          Please know that I'm with you on the pain of what happened. My mom had an elderly death and one near death from a health related problem. The dog was doing fine other than the usual faster pants. No major sign of "serious" stress. The owner told her she had already had several close calls with her at home and knew it was coming sooner or later. Mom wished she had told her about the close calls before the groom. That didn't make mom feel any better.

                          I know how much it hurts because it took her forever to even start feeling better and to this day feels bad even though she knows she is gentle with her dogs and will stop grooming when needed. I've seen it happen.

                          But you really should consider the situation and reconsider the content of the post. You have given detail that can be used, twisted if required, by groups like P eta and other groups that are determined to make all groomers look like killers. this type of detail should be reserved for your clients, lawyers, etc. If all was fair in this world we could post freely but as I have experienced several times myself, there are people out there that love to twist your words to say something you did not intend.

                          With that said, I think it is very important to let other groomers know what can happen on the table. Knowing that animals can die on the table is a very real thing that every groomer should be aware of and groomers should share so we can all learn from each other so posting about the death is good from that perspective and should happen.

                          It is hard for you now and you will never really completely stop hurting for the pet or owner but this to will pass and have less of a sting. I know I would be making an offer of a replacement pet regardless of the biz owners opinion. How you handle this with them outside the work setting is a personal consideration. Mom visited them at their house and took some flowers and offered to help them with the cost of their next pet. They accepted the flowers as a gift and told her that they truely knew how bad she felt but "it was not your fault. It was going to happen sooner or later." All was much better but she still hurt over it.



                          • #14
                            So sorry for you

                            There is nothing I can say that hasn't already been said. I groom a lot of cats. I love grooming cats. But I explain it very well on my website about what types of cats I will or will not groom. I had my own scare yesterday. I went to the local vet hospital to groom a cat under sedation. My part of it went fine but as of 8pm last night the kitty had still not woken up and it's temp was very low. I just called this morning and the kitty was finally up and moving. No matter what your level of involvement was, you still feel horrible if something goes wrong. Learning to know when to say no is a very important thing. Hugs to you.


                            • #15
                              Ruthie has courage to divulge all.

                              Thank you Ruthie for being open and honest about what happened.

                              I believe that this forum should be for the free flow of information without thought of who will be sued so we can all learn from others mistakes.

                              Every shop should have a safety policy and person responsible for making sure those guidelines are followed by everyone everyday.

                              What is more important then the safety of yourself, your employees and your clients pets who have been entrusted to you.

                              Accidents can and will happen. Elderly pets may pass due to the increased handling during grooming. But do we need to increase those chances or decrease them?

                              If you do not have a "Safety Policy" make one immediately. If you do not have a personal "Safety Policy" make one immediately. We should all have a personal "Code of Ethics" to follow. Check out the NDGAA's Code of Ethics, it is a start. click on the "Master Groomer" link.