Kimchi, my four-month pup, was getting a little shaggy and needed a grooming really bad, because every time she would try to scratch herself, she would have her nails tangled up in her matted hair, and she would always cry out and I would have to come running to release her from herself. So I told myself whenever I had time, I would attempt to groom her and then bathe her. That day was yesterday.
Normally, I would take my dogs to the groomer to receive a professional grooming, but I am running on empty, and I just couldn't afford to take her to a groomer. So I made up my mind that I would groom her myself with my very own clippers that I cut my hair with. It came with a pretty long guard, so I thought it would be okay. I had no illusions as to having any idea of what I was doing, but I had to do what I had to do.
So I started trying to groom her, and the clipper was not cooperating and I was just taking random patches of hair off her. On top of that, her hair was really tangled and matted, which made the clipping process so much more difficult. Along the way, I thought I had figured it out and I started trimming her hair down really close, and I had thought I did a really good job of cutting off most of her hair when I did an inspection of the intermediate grooming phase when I noticed that I had cut her skin up really good in many different places. When I saw the injuries, it didn't quite register to me yet, but when saw a really deep cut the size of a quarter on her underbelly, I lost it and started crying uncontrollably. I cried because, when I brought Kimchi home as a baby, I knew it was my duty to love and protect her, but here I am, the one person that has inflicted upon her the injuries, and I wasn't sure how I felt, and I panicked. So I placed her on the ground, and surprisingly, she was running around and functional as if nothing was wrong with her, and she was just staring at me intently, awaiting my attention, and she didn't appear to be upset with me. But I knew I had to get her some medical attention, and I did a quick search for any pet hospital that were still open at 7:30pm, and, luckily, I was able to locate a 24 hour emergency vet hospital just about five minutes away from me, so I wrapped her in a towel and got to driving there.
When we arrived at the hospital, I approached the front desk and the receptionist asked me what the matter was, and I told her I was grooming her and I cut her, and I broke down and became very hysterical. The female technician took a quick survey of her and told me it isn't too bad, and that the laceration did not penetrate her stomach, which was good. So they took her in right away, and they had me fill out paperwork and asked me to wait to be consulted by the doctor. They placed me in this room, with one single dim light and the nurse walked out and closed the door. I know the dim lighting was supposed to be soothing, but I couldn't bear it, and after about ten minutes of anxiously waiting in that small room, I walked out and asked if I could just wait in the common waiting area and they said yes.
Eventually, and what seemed like not soon enough, the doctor came to see me and we went back into that small room. He informed me that the injuries aren't very bad, and that it is not an uncommon injury and he sees it all the time when owners try to groom their dogs with long hair that are really tangled and matted very close to the skin. He informed me that the care she will receive will likely cost in the ballpark of $600-800 dollars, and I became emotional, and I told him I only have $500 in my bank account. He asked me if I could give them a part of the money that night and take care of the rest later, and I told him I could pay them $450, and so he went to work and I paid $400. It was nearing 8pm, and the doctor told me Kimchi would be ready to go home at 11pm, so he said I could go home and come pick her up in a few hours. One of the front desk lady asked me if I wanted to go say bye to her and took me to the back. She was in a cell, and she just looked at me with loving, compassionate eyes, and she was very forgiving and understanding, and she just wanted me to protect her.
So I decided to go home and eat, because I had not eaten since noon that day and I was starving. I started to prepare my food but I just couldn't eat. So I decided I needed to just go back to the hospital and just wait for her there. I washed my face, dried my tears, and changed my clothes, because my sweater had gotten blood on it when I was holding Kimchi. And back to the emergency room it was.
Eventually, after a two hour wait, and what seemed like forever, Kimchi was ready to go home with me. The doctor came out and told me they put on two stitches on her, and the total cost of care was going to be around $500. I was so relieved, and I believe they gave me a discount because I was so hysterical and crying when I brought her in, and that I am poOr. But I am very thankful and grateful for their kind gesture.
I am very glad and happy to inform that Kimchi is doing so much better this morning. She was very traumatized last night and cried for most of the night until we both went to sleep together in my bed. This morning, she was eating and playing well, and she seemed to be 90% healthy.
So in my attempt to save $50 on grooming cost, the final result ended up costing Kimchi much anxiety, pain, and being traumatized, and ended up costing me $500 at the end of the day.
Moral of the story, always leave it to the professionals, because, sometimes, trying to do something yourself where you have no idea what you are doing will cost you much, much more in the long run. And in my case, it costed me 10x what I would have paid for if I would have just taken my baby to the groomers.
-The Kimchi Whisperer-