Without a doubt the feel-good story of the week at our hospital happened today.
We were dismissing Lucy, an 11-year-old Beagle who had a dental scaling and polishing today. Her owner and I sat down to discuss a procedure she will need later because of having lost both upper canine teeth.
Actually, he sat down while I stood to use a diagram to demonstrate what we had done today. I insisted that he sit because he was in obvious pain as he walked and stood.
“I’ll need an approximate fee on that followup procedure so I can plan,” he said. “I’m spending my co-pay on Lucy, you see. I need a knee replacement, but I’m making sure she’s all taken care of first. Do you want to know why I’m doing that?”
“Of course I do,” I quickly responded, on the edge of my seat awaiting the motivation for his great act of self-sacrifice.
“It’s because I’m in pain, but I understand why I’m in pain. Those bad teeth have been hurting her, but she doesn’t understand why she hurts. When she’s all fixed up, then I can start saving for my 20% co-pay for my own procedure.”
See you tomorrow, Dr. Randolph.