Friday, December 4, 2015

More Work Stories

It's been a while since I've shared some of the odd things that happen at work. Don't worry, my job hasn't suddenly become normal and/or boring, I just haven't gotten around to writing things down. As usual, names and other identifying facts have been changed or omitted to protect the innocent my butt. Enjoy the madness!

Not Snowball
Ms. Russo reported that her cat, Snowball, had been
stolen. The cat had been missing for 3 months, but she just saw it in a yard next to park. (The park is a half mile away.) When Ms. Russo told the family that the cat was hers they told her to leave and threatened to call the police. Then it got weird. My conversation with Ms. Russo went something like this:
Me: Is Snowball male or female?
Her: I don't know.
Me: How long have you had Snowball?
Her: About two years.
Me: Your vet will know Snowball's sex. Why don't you call the vet's office and ask them to look it up?
Her: I've never taken Snowball to the vet.
Me: Why not? You know cats need rabies vaccinations too, right?
Her: Oh, Snowball had that when we adopted him. Or her.
Me: Great. That information should be on your adoption paperwork. Go ahead look that up. I'll wait.
Her: I don't know where that paperwork is. [Followed by some lame excuse because she doesn't know that I know she's a hoarder.]
Me: How old is Snowball?
Her: About 2 years. We got Snowball as a tiny kitten.
Me: Where did you adopt Snowball?
Her: From the Humane Society.
Me: Great. They sterilize all animals before adoption. When you got Snowball was the belly shaved or was the back end shaved?
Her: I don't remember.
Me: [exasperated]: Let's move on. Was Snowball wearing a collar?
Her: No, but there's a microchip.
Me: Great. What's the microchip number? [BTW, that info would also be in the adoption paperwork or vet records.]
Her: I don't know. You'll have to call the chip company and find out.
Me: No, you need to call the microchip company. It's your cat!
Not Snowball either
At that point I told her to look for the adoption paperwork and call me in the morning. I went and talked to the other family, who were a bit more sane. They had found the white cat a few months previously. They honestly didn't know whether or not it was the Russo's cat. I examined the cat and scanned for a microchip; there wasn't one. The following day Ms. Russo called me. She had found the adoption paperwork after all. She had the microchip number and discovered that Snowball was a boy. Surprise! I told her that the cat in question was not hers. She didn't believe me, and accused the family of cutting out the microchip. I told her if they had done that, they also performed a sex change because the cat they had was a girl.

Definitely not Snowball
I've shared this one before. Still funny though! Dispatch relayed that a citizen had called 911 to report a pig running down Main street. The pig was wearing a harness and dragging a leash behind it. I went to the reported location and sure enough, there was a pig wearing a harness. I wasn't surprised either. Why? Because it was a Monday. Mondays are always weird.

My phone rang at 6:30 one morning. The Lieutenant asked me to come in right away. There was an "incident" and they wanted my opinion before the news showed up -- and Channel 4 was on the way. Ms. Jackson, a local CCL (Crazy Cat Lady), found a dead kitten on her porch. It had been partially skinned and there was blood everywhere. She said that "obviously this was a satanic ritual," so she called the local news -- before calling the police, of course. I arrived on scene and met with the detective who was diligently taking photographs and measurements. Even crazy people get the best of service in our town! Sure enough, there was a kitten on the porch just as described. The Lieutenant asked my professional opinion. I flipped the corpse over and in my best Colombo impersonation said "foxes, not freaks." Why?
  • Ms. Jackson's property butted up against the nature preserve and I'd had several complaints about foxes recently.
  • The jagged edges of the skin were torn, not cut by a knife.
  • The soft, internal organs were missing. Predators often eat these first.
  • The body was not laid out on display. Instead, it was crumpled up in a heap in the darkest corner of the property.
Ergo, no animal sacrifices at the beach! Ms. Jackson and the police department were relieved by my determination. The News, not so much. Bloodsuckers.

Made me think of poor old Poopmeister
I received a strange complaint via email. A resident on Coastal Drive was "putting shit piles on the sidewalk and covering them with chemicals harmful to pets and children." (My first thought was "don't let your kids lick the sidewalk" but . . . ) I called the complainant. He lives around the corner from Poopmeister. Complainer said that the "chemical" was mothballs and he was upset because the poop placement meant he either had to walk in the busy street or through the stinky poop/mothball combo on his way to Starbucks. I thanked him for the information. (Psst: I didn't really mean it.) Then I went to visit Poopmeister. His house was on the main road, situated between town center and an apartment complex. His well-manicured yard was about the size of my office. (Please note: I have a teeny tiny office.) When I got there I didn't see any feces, but it did smell strongly of mothballs. Apparently Poopmeister was tired of the neighborhood dogs using his lawn as a public toilet and he blew a gasket. The most recent pile -- which "was so huge it must have been from a great Dane!" -- was the final straw, causing him to grab the shovel and start flinging poo like an angry chimpanzee. (I didn't get a clear answer about the mothballs.) Once Poopmeister calmed down he cleaned up his mess. I empathized with Poopmeister and we came up with some more constructive ways to deal with his problem. I also told him that he needed to focus on the grand scheme of things; I'd hate for him to have an aneurysm over a pile of poop. (P.S. I also spoke with several neighbors. Apparently Poopmeister is a bit of an ass and people may be letting their dogs crap in his yard intentionally just to piss him off.)

And the award goes to Chloe's dumbass owner . . .
A woman brought in a stray dog she found near the freeway. Both the woman and the dog were from outside our jurisdiction and technically we shouldn't have accepted the dog. However, the county shelter was closed and we had space, so we said we'd transfer it to the proper shelter later if we couldn't locate an owner. My partner copied the woman's driver's license and took in the pittie mix. Partner scanned the dog and discovered that she had a chip! Partner called the microchip company and the chip wasn't registered. However, it did trace back to the county shelter. The county's records showed that the chip had been implanted in a tan pit bull mix that had been adopted several months back. By whom? The woman who "found" it. But wait: that's not the surprising part.

Unfortunately, people turn in their own pets and claimed they're strays all the time. No, the kicker was when my partner contacted the woman and told her to come get her dog or be charged with abandonment the woman had the audacity to say, "That's my dog? Oh my God! I thought 'Wow it looks like Chloe,' but Chloe ran away months ago. I wondered why the dog got into my car so easily. I can't believe it!" We didn't believe it either. Talk about a Poopmeister!

This job may not be glamorous or lucrative, but it is entertaining. Seriously, I can't make this stuff up. Until next time, -- K

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