Imagine you took time off work, cleaned a crate in preparation to take a stray female cat for spaying so that she is spared future pregnancies (she’s already had 3 litters you know of), struggled with the heavy crate to bring it into the car until your heart beat nineteen to the dozen, you’re gasping for breath minutes after the crate has been lifted in, battled extremely heavy traffic to get to the vet where you made the appointment for by taking the effort to actually walk-in last week, only to find the clinic still closed after opening hours and a notice on the entrance stating that the doctor is on maternity for 2 months. Anyone would be incensed.
For the past (almost) 2 years, I have been feeding Mothercat who keeps getting pregnant. She was supposed to be spayed at my regular vet on 11/2 right after the CNY holidays but too bad, she escaped every time I tried to push her into the crate and I had no choice but to abort the appointment. Then the vet tells me they are full for spaying till March! By that time, Mothercat can get pregnant again.
So I googled and found a vet with apparently the best spaying rates in town. Preventicare Veterinary Clinic opens at 8.30am and they’re only open till 11am as after that, the doctor does the surgeries. I rushed there as soon as I found out about the clinic on Google and was just in time before they closed. Made the appointment for this morning. Guy at reception tells me the clinic will be closed for 2 months beginning March as Doctor will be on maternity.
This morning with angry and meowing cat in the car, arrived at the clinic at 8.30am sharp only to find it closed with a notice on the entrance stating that the clinic will be closed till 2/5 due to the Doctor being on maternity. That’s all very well but how about extending some professionalism, courtesy and responsibility to customers who in good faith have made appointments and left their phone numbers with you so that you can call to cancel those appointments should you not open the clinic.
After all, the clinic is not a one-woman show. The person who noted down my appointment and phone number could have called me to cancel in which case it would have saved me a lot of time and trouble this morning. I whatsapped the number on the sheet of paper at the entrance but till now, no response. I think that at the very least, an apology should be extended. It’s just not right to forget about customers who have made appointments even if the maternity was sudden. I am quite often appalled and disappointed with the level of service in many businesses.
As of this afternoon, I have not received any response from the vet’s official number even though I see blue ticks next to my messages which obviously means my messages have been read. I don’t know who is holding the phone with that number, whether it is the vet herself or her staff (the one who took my reservation).
Whoever it is doesn’t even dare to reply or apologise as should be my due. How can any professional, no matter how competent he or she may be, not even give a customer the most basic of courtesies? Even tradespeople like the plumber, gardener or contractor call me when they need to cancel an appointment with me. We’re talking about a vet here with staff, there is simply no excuse for this kind of attitude/behaviour!
When you are so evidently in the wrong, admit it and apologise. It’s sad that people don’t even feel any sense of shame any more. I really don’t like being screwed around with as if I have nothing better to do than drive an angry cat to a shop that isn’t open. How hard is it to call someone and inform them that their appointment has to be rescheduled? It’s infuriating, frustrating and shocking that people can be so blasé about the whole thing as if they don’t care about their reputation.