Dr Phil Hammond once said: ‘For 90% of symptoms you’re better of with a dog than a doctor’. He pointed out that dogs are an antidote to loneliness and a lack of exercise and that they give encouraging licks, which GPs are generally reluctant to do.
So, by way of experiment, and to see if the recruiting of a canine workforce might be the answer to the current shortage of General Practitioners, this week we employed Barney as a locum in our practice.
This may have been a mistake as it seems it’s true what they say. Now over 14 years old it has indeed proved impossible for him to learn any new trucks. Here he is seen insisting that my card was the Jack of Hearts when it was in fact the Queen of Spades.
And you should have seen the mess he made of cutting my wife in two!
Despite his unpromising interview however, such was our desperation to find somebody to help with the clinical workload, we nonetheless went ahead and offered him eight sessions a week. Here he is getting home after his first day on call – as you can see, he’s already cream crackered, just like the rest of us.
Unlike his previous job though, it turns out that a penchant for daytime torpidity, a propensity for covering the living room floor with unwanted hair, and a particularly appealing pair of dark brown eyes doesn’t make up the sufficiently broad skill set required for working as a GP.
Furthermore, the previously agreed remuneration of an additional Bonio and a handful of doggy chocs is no longer considered sufficient reward for his labours which, to be fair, isn’t too surprising seeing as we made him do Advanced Access.
He tells me he won’t be back in next week so the search for a solution to the shortfall in primary care clinicians goes on.
Anyone know if hamsters can take blood?
To read ‘A Not So Shaggy Dog Story’, click here