Tag Archives: dogs

up-selling gone crazy …when is enough enough??

13 Feb

thursday 2

Today our dear old pooch underwent surgery for a blocked gland below her jaw.

At 14 she really does bear a striking resemblance to a little old lady (some would say she is very like my MIL… both in nature and appearance) with slow gait and arthritic hips, she waddles around as deaf as a post, but is seemingly content in her own world.

Sadly, recent months have seen her struggle to swallow and a large blocked gland was soon found to be the culprit. So … a month ago the first intervention was to drain it; a temporary fix for the bargain basement price of $300.

Following the surgery we were offered a permanent cure but involved radical surgery and a starting bill of $3000…. (gulp…NO Medicare on this one)

Instead of rushing in, we chose to take a few weeks and watch how she went …but  lo and behold it returned as predicted and soon she was struggling to eat again. So, at this point we were presented with an alternative option…a modified, ‘budget’ procedure which would make her comfortable for ONLY $1000…. or so we thought.

When my 50something husband checked her into the clinic for the procedure this morning,  he was stunned to be upsized with a range of ‘optional medical extras’ …procedures and equipment that one would normally expect were the domain and decision of the operating Vet.

  • Would you like her to have a blood test while she is ‘under’?  (extra cost of $85) Seriously?? How the hell would we know?
  • Would you like her to have IV fluids during or after the surgery? (extra cost of $45) but AGAIN how the hell would we know? Isn’t that the Vet’s decision?
  • And so it went … in total , seven ‘up-sell’ opportunities as the cash register goes Cha Ching..and our $1000 quote suddenly looks more like $1500 and rising.

Still …..she is home again, and just think how much we saved from that first quote …. It just make me wonder about the McDonalds approach to surgery…..”would you like fries with that?” 



it’s a dogs life

2 Feb

Driving past the local vet I saw the sign for puppy preschool. Now most of us would not argue with the idea of teaching a new dog who the boss is, along with a few basic manners…..but is this obsession with pooch pampering all going a bit too far?

Below the sign for ‘puppy preschool’ was one for ‘puppy primary’ …(who knows what that involves, but guessing it doesn’t include reading and writing)… I can almost cope with this too; EXCEPT this is hot on the heels of seeing adverts for doggie dance classes. Yep … that’s right! Owners and their precious pooches dress up and ‘trip the light fantastic’ (not sure what you would call the moves … but  I can’t imagine too much twirking or hip hop).

pampered pooch

Then there was the puppy parlour …Decked out like a beauty salon, pampered pooches can be washed, fluffed  and flounced with ribbons and bows…all to make the owners feel good before heading off to one of the boutiques to buy a new outfit. Selling all things glitter and bling, these up-market fashion stores even sell shoes for the best dressed canines.

I was first exposed to poncy puppies in New York City’s Central Park a few years back. We saw ‘dog walkers’ taking their four legged charges for their daily exercise wearing diamante collar, soft lace up shoes and often a t-shirt or jacket. This is certainly a long way from our two ‘paddock pooches’, who despite being much loved…. live, and are treated like dogs.