Harald Baldr    Warsaw, Poland    Category: Expat Life    

A Ukrainian dog’s traumatic day

A couple of months ago whilst in Kiev, a friend of mine needed some moral support when she went to neuter her dog. I tagged along to offer just that. Plus, I was anxious to satisfy my own curiosity with regards to what conditions veterinarians were working under in Ukraine. Seeing an animal being operated on wasn’t top of my list of must do things in 2015.

Still, I figured why the hell not? I took the metro to the very last stop to the outskirts of Kiev. There I met up with my friend and Arra, her dog. We then took a taxi to the vet.

The veterinary clinic was at the end of what looked like an abandoned street. There were lots of street cats and some derelict cars. Mainly Ladas. That was pretty much it. I don’t think anyone lived there. At the end of the road was the clinic. As soon as we entered it was as if Arra, whom I was told had never visited a vet before, knew something was up. She had an unmistakable I’m-scared-to-death look on her face.  Luckily she didn’t have to wait long. Ten minutes later she was sound asleep on the operating table.

Not having been to a vet before I have little grounds for making comparisons. Still, the operating room itself looked pretty decent to me. Initially I found it a bit strange how the vet was boiling his knives and tools in a little gas fired canister but you have to disinfect your equipment somehow. In Ukraine, you make do with what you’ve got. 

With Arra in a chemically induced coma, the vet strung her out crucifixion style across the table, and made the first incision. The whole ordeal took about 30-45 minutes. It was impossible not to feel sorry for the dog.

Arra was still sound asleep throughout the whole taxi ride home and didn’t wake up before late the next day. She’s now doing excellent I hear and is as good as new. The whole operation cost a grand total of $19 USD. The service at the clinic, was despite what it looks like, very professional.

Pre-operation and in good spirits chasing neighbourhood cats all over the place
Cats ruled this neighbourhood before Arra’s arrival
Not the clinic! I forgot to take a photo of that. This is just to give you a feel for the area
Top right: The knives and tools for the operation being disinfected
She’s already asleep in this picture
Stitching up after a day’s work
An exhausted dog ready to be taken home

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