Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Nigerians and their pets - Part 2

Tutsi’s pups

Dr T herself has the most adorable dog, Tutsi. Wonder if she’s still alive now? She must be 9 yrs and if she will remember me! Tutsi and I had this love thing going on. She loved Dr T best anyway but I was her side kick. She had this cute but crooky overbite which gave her a not so nice smile. But her honey blonde long hair was so pretty.
My most memorable event was when Tutsi gave birth. We had nursed her through her 3months pregnancy from back rubs to tummy rubs to extra snacks and pampering. Her Edd(expected date of delivery) was supposed to be a Thursday, but she proceeded to give birth on Wednesday when I was off-duty. So I came in to work Thursday morning and Tutsi ran out to say Hi as usual. She literally ran in and brought out her babies one by one to proudly display to me while madly dancing around like “hey congratulate me, I did it”. I did. "Go Tutsi, Go Tutsi". I had to stop her dancing, so she could conserve her energy..lol.
For me that event put paid to the myths about female dogs and their babies. They are extra-protective yes, but they also know those who love them.
Tito my Protector
Remember Tito from the last post? I told you we got on like wild fire with Tito didn’t I? Well, let me recount his protectivism for his favourite human(me). So there was this doggy R (an Alsatian) that came for treatment. He had to be admitted for some days so he could take his injections cos his owners didn’t live near. An adult dog at 4years, he was also a spoilt irritating brat of a dog that wouldn't let you touch him. Just because. See that attitude is cute in small dogs cause those usually think they are 'all that' but a big old awkward Alsie? Gimme a break.
I dodged being assigned to give him his injections cause he and I weren’t getting along. Moreover he was an older patient so he was familiar with the other docs. Anywho, come Tuesday, Dr T was off and I had to do the honors; R wouldn’t let me. He kept growling and just being a bitchy bitch. Tito and Co(5) were out in their play ground having fun. They must have noticed my distress cos they left their play and came over. Remember Tito and co were pups - 3-4 months old. They sort of mounted a guard beside me and barked at R, Tito leading. I shall interpret the bark as meaning ‘Will you stfu. What’s wrong with you? Dr G is the sweetest thing here and let me warn you if you give her a hard time, you will answer to us’. Lols. Well, it must have been what they said cause R who had been giving me hell this past 25 mins went quiet and under their watch he cooperated and I gave him his jab. Not a peep from him.
Trust me, my protectors had their fill of doggy snacks that day. I loved that dog!

Owner vs Paid Help
Miss X came with her pet dog TT for some skin ailment which required daily injections for 5 days. This dog was one bloody Mongrel/Bingo whose status had been elevated by having loving owners (No, I am not being a dog snob).
So lady came with TT, and kept patting/rubbing him and Sweetie-ing her. Time for injections and as I got the syringe ready, lady goes ‘Dr G, isn’t it going to be painful for poor sweetie”(insert evil glare). Dog noting the sympathy in Miss X’s voice started whimpering and shaking like a jelly fish. As I came to the treatment table he lept for her arms whimpering ‘pls save me saaave me’ on cue Miss X goes “Doc, is an injection really necessary? Won't tablets do? He is scared”. Nope Lady injections are necessary and faster. I don’t trust you to give him tabs twice a day at the right time duh.
This went on for days 1-4. Each treatment taking about 40 mins cause Miss X feeds her dog’s anxieties with hers.
On Day 5 , she couldn’t make it and TT comes with the family chauffeur. Chauffeur summarily marches TT in, helps me get him onto the treatment table and under his watchful glare and threatening back hand, TT and I finish the treatment in 8 mins tops. I no fit laugh. Doggy knew who could take her nonsense!

Dog Mom for a day.
A client’s Boerbull bitch had just given birth to 10 pups. Bitch only had 8 nipples so in a survival of the fittest contest, the stronger eight got fed while the two weakest ones were sidelined. Sadly the owner was more than happy with the fit 8 and couldn’t care less what happened to the two. One had already died by the time he brought them to the clinic. The last one wasn’t doing too well. Dr U and I asked him for the weak one and he happily left him to us. We were thinking that if we could nurse him we might just get a dog that way. Note Boer-bull pups go for 80-100,00 naira.
W, an Intern took him home the first night. Think a 4 day old pup. Still blind. Hairless. Suckling. She required warm dog milk like every 2 hrs. and since we didn’t have bottle teats that tiny we had to be giving it with pipettes-drop by drop. W came in the next morning with bleary eyes complaining about lack of sleep. But pup looked alright.
That night was my turn to take him home. I learnt what new moms go through first hand. I stayed awake all night cos it took almost 2 hrs to feed him 5 ml of warm milk. So by the time that is done, he is ready for the next one. Pup slept on my belly covered with a woolen scarf. He would sniffle and shuffle up to my neck, then fall off. His yelp will then wake me. He even peed on me twice. Yep the things we do for love and medicine!.
I was like a zombie by morning. But yeah he was alright though not as bright eyed and bushy tailed.
Dr U took him home the third night. Did I mention Dr U is male? Need I finish?
Pup was looking worse for wear in the morning while Dr U was looking bright and bushy tailed - like someone who had slept all night. What can I say….pup died by midday. Case closed.

The Lady and the Tramp
Mrs K came to the clinic with the cutest honey tan German shepherd J. She told us she had bought female J cause she hoped to breed and sell her pups. So J was a business investment. With her nice coloring she can sell each pup for 30k. Anyway her complaint - J had been adding weight, sleeping too much and just generally being lazy. What was wrong? Following examination – Diagnosis was – J is pregnant. You should have seen that woman. If that dog was human it would have gotten a resounding slap. ‘How? Where? WHO give you belle?(who got your pregnant?). We had to hold on tight to our laughter till she left.
We later got the answers to the Who – the neighborhood’s randy Bingo, Where – in the house. How – Being inexperienced Owner didn’t notice when J was on heat. But Neighborhood Bingo knew and was having conjugal relations with her precious dog every night. Result – pregnancy!

Another Lady and Tramp
Client F came to the Clinic her pet Pomeranian to pick some pet toiletries. Pomeranian was on heat too and Client had plans for a Pomeranian male mate. Pomeranian took off on a walk round the clinic. Further down was a kennel belonging to Y the resident Doberman. Y had been abandoned by its owners. He had lost his back legs in an accident so was disabled. The owners stopped caring for him and out of guilt brought him to the Clinic and abandoned him with us. Anyway before you could say 'Dober what', Pomeranian had discovered Y whose Kennel door was open and had already set her tail and ass up lovingly for some sugar. Our shout was what shocked them into inaction. 
I don’t want to imagine what that hybrid mix would have looked like if Boy Y had been successful. Ewwwww. It is this kind of hybrid mixes that lead to those odd looking mongrels (Bingo dogs) we know.
The Pet's world is alive and growing in Nigeria. Security is usually the primary reason for getting pets in Nigeria, followed by status then love. But many miss the fact that security goes hand in hand with love cause if you treat your pet well then you get its undying devotion which means it protects you even more fiercely. We are not yet there but we will get there.
Many of you my friends say you are scared of dogs. It makes me sad cause you are missing it out on some great companionship :)
Did you have a dog growing up? Got tales? Come on share..


  1. Great Write up.............Naija


  2. wow! I wish I wasn't scared of dogs. I can't even come close to it, no to talk of rubbing it...*sighs* good for you Ginger nuts

  3. omg girl i am really tempted to get a cute little doggie though i'm freakin terrified of dogs. Your stories are so cute and i wish i cld have loving dogs like that.
    aww i'm sad that puppy died :/

  4. we've never had a dog, but growing up in Nigeria we had Chickens, fish, and a goat. in England we've guinea pigs and rabbits. My friends and cousins in Nigeria also have dogs so I'm pretty used animals. Everyone in my family loves pets; the tears and drama when they die! The allergy sufferer who would sniffle and tear up constantly just because she wants to hold the guinea pig...Me, I am just too lazy to look after an animal. You have to clean, feed, walk them etc...I already struggle to do that for myself!

  5. I really enjoyed these stories Ginger! I never had a pet. But my best friend has a little cute dog once. We were in junior secondary school and we used to act out dramas and use the pup as a baby or other characters. It was such fun lol


  6. Thanks for reading people!! I enjoyed going down memorable lane myself.
    Clara - I feel you on the responsibility of pet care. it is wrok!!
    Adiya - lol@ playing pretend baby with a pup. That must have been one irritated pup!
    Vyvyka - I am coming to Dundee with a pup. lets see you run lol.
    Kitkat - May you fall in love with someone that has three dogs...:)

  7. Oh Ginger, why am I not surprised you love dogs? These episodes are so lovingly described! I can't wait for you to meet Harry and Honey. (But don't tell them they are Bingos because it will hurt their feelings. In the Bahamas, they call them potcakes!)

  8. lol@Ginger, I'm sure you dont to see that happen. Two days ago, I got on the bus and as I was proceeding to the back seat, there was this huge black dog (think it was a German Shepherd) right in the middle though the owner was holding on to it. I stopped and decided to stand right behind the driver. The driver said I should go and have a seat and I said "NO", I feel like standing today and after a brief argument, he let me be. There was no way I was going to walk past that dog to get a seat; I'll rather stand or get off the bus.My case is that bad :(

  9. I had dogs while growing up, mostly alsatians, and a sheep dog (invariably mixed to several generations.lol) and I loved them to bits

    But I agree that we didnt take care of them like we should do.

    Strangely they live a very long life span with us and our care sha



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