Remember when I told you about my little licking problem? Well, it hasn’t gotten better, in fact the other day it started bleeding and I got my blood all over mom. So, she decided it was time to call the Tanzanian veterinarian. His name is Jovi and he was recommended to my mom by one of her friends.
Jovi is a veterinarian who makes house calls, which is not very common in the US. Back in Ithaca, my mom always had to make an appointment and then we would go to a special building to see the veterinarian. However, in Tanzania, like most other things, it’s different. Here, my mom just called the veterinarian and in a few hours he showed up at the house on a piki-piki.
The veterinarian wasn’t like the ones I’ve seen in the US, in fact he seemed intimidated by me, just like all the other Tanzanians. I wonder how someone decides to become a veterinarian in Tanzania, since the love for animals is very different here. Anyhow, he examined my paw, and said that I was strange because normally the licking behavior is on the front paws. But, like my mom, I’m not surprised that I’m unique! The vet also said that it appeared that I had a bit of mange on my skin and that might be the cause of the itching that makes me lick all the time.
The vet decided that he would give me a shot of antibiotics so that my paw wouldn’t get infected. He had come with an envelop that contained several drugs and a needle, so he pulled out the things he needed and then asked mom if she had a rope. Mom seemed confused by this request and asked him why he needed a rope. He said that it was to put in my mouth so that I wouldn’t bite him. I couldn’t believe this! In the US, they usually give me a stick with cheese on it and I don’t even notice that I’m getting a shot. Tanzania is like the 1800’s when they made people chew on a stick during surgery! Well, mom said that I don’t bite and that she would just hold me while I got the shot.
The vet was still very nervous, and this made me more nervous too. I wriggled around trying to get away because the last thing I wanted was a nervous person coming at me with a sharp object. The vet was not happy with my behavior, so he grabbed the skin on the back of my neck, lifted me up, and stabbed the needle into me. Both mom and I squealed out of discomfort! But soon enough it was over, and I survived.
After my shot, the vet explained that we would have to go see him everyday for 5 days to get more shots of antibiotics. I am not a fan of this plan, but mom says it’s the only way to make sure that the drugs work and I don’t get sick. The vet will also give my mom some treatments for the mange, and he assured her that she wouldn’t get it from sleeping in the same bed as me 🙂
After giving the instructions, we arranged to meet the vet the next day to continue my treatment. As he was leaving, the vet petted me in the funny Tanzanian tapping way, not the soft American way.
In the evening, mom and I relaxed after our stressful afternoon. I think my vet appointment was almost as difficult for mom as it was for me!