Thursday, June 7, 2012

Living Up to our Names

When Lucky was going on day three of no "waste disposal" and day 6 of very little eating, we decided we better bring him back to the vet. However, our regular vet had cost $300 just for the xray. (We knew they would want a follow up xray). And that would be the cost if they did nothing else except tell us our dog was about to explode. If we wanted them to do anything about it, it would easily be another $1000. We had already had that immense joy once, and had not really been chomping at the bit to repeat it. So we decided it was worth it to trek the 45 minutes into the country to the vet that our favorite rescue farm, Hollow Creek Farm, raves about. Not only are they priced in a way such that even people who do not peddle cocaine for a living can afford them, but they are really excellent vets, we were assured. So we packed our unhappy dog in the van, and headed to Palmetto Veterinary in McConnell, SC.

Who could not love a vet who towers around 6'5 or so, and is named, "Dr. Love"? And this kind-hearted giant was really only about 35 minutes from Charlotte. A 35 minute drive was definitely worth a vet that costs a third of what we are paying in Charlotte. The office is in the middle of a rolling country road, that is designated a scenic byway. It was just gorgeous, and worth the drive for the lovely scenery alone. Lucky even looked a little perkier, watching the cows, and horses, and lovely hills slip by. The office itself is a charming red building nestled in wide open fields. I brought my poor old dog in and was greeted by a sweet receptionist, and two customers who all exchanged stories about their dogs swallowing near fatal bones.
"My dog was 14 years old," said the lady, "And a bone got wedged in between his teeth and the top of his mouth. He couldn't close his mouth! WE couldn't get it out. Finally he got his paw up there and shoved and wrenched it out. You should have seen the blood!"
Oh my. So sorry to have missed that, I thought, leading Lucky back to his exam room.

Dr. Love came in, blocking all sunlight that might have tried to stream over his head. It just may be that I was sitting down, but he struck me as larger than life, at least taller than most life. I don't think he even looked at me, or acknowledged me. He went straight for my dog, and palpated his tummy.
I like this vet, I thought. Not only do I love someone named Dr. Love, but I loved the no nonsense focus on the object of my visit. I didn't need small talk- I needed my dog fixed. I handed him the old xrays and notes from our last vet visit, the one that had sent us home scraping the piggy bank for lost change.
"We need to do an xray," he said, "But it will be MUCH cheaper than the one you already had done." He whisked Lucky away.
When he came back the second time, he smiled and said, "I think he will be fine. Come on back and I will show you the xray."
I followed him to his computer screen in a back room. Lucky's guts were displayed on the screen.
"See, the air bubble that was here on the first xray is gone now."
(I presumed that was a good thing)
"His lower intestine looks normal now, just filled with feces. He just needs to get eating again to push that along. I'll prescribe some stomach soothing medication, and give you some special food."
ohoh. The last vet gave us special food, too. $30 of special food that Lucky spits out.
"Most dogs really love this stuff," Dr. Love assured me.

After paying about a fourth of what we paid at the Charlotte vet, we headed home. The view was even more beautiful. When I got home, I gave Lucky the stomach soother and the special food. He ate every bite, and licked the bowl.

Palmetto Vet on McConnell highway, SC, folks. If you live anywhere near them, and think dog ownership shouldn't cost more than owning a home, they are your kind of place. And Dr. Love lives up to his name.

I wondered if he was destined to be a compassionate health care provider with that name, or if he felt he had to try to live up to his name. It would be a terrible atrocity if Dr. Love had decided to go into a career of professional assassin instead of soothing a hurting dog's stomach. My name means Victory. And Lucky's name means...lucky. I pray we all fulfill our appointed destiny.

Psalm 18: 49-50
Therefore I will praise you, Lord, among the nations;
I will sing the praises of your name. He gives his king great victories;
he shows unfailing love to his anointed,

-save a dog-


  1. Yay! Poop, Lucky, poop!!!! And don't let the dingo get your food :) Mary Ann

    1. thanks Mary Ann! We are keeping the dingo away from his special food, much to her dismay....

  2. Lucky that "everything" will come out okay! Then you will have Victory! I Love even the "Dingo"

  3. fortunately, right on all counts, Nancy!