Dang, I forgot to note the total sales at the end of the month!!
But those evite Christmas cards definitely worked because three of Val’s customers who haven’t ordered since 2007 got online within a day of opening the card and ordered.
And then I’m helping another one of my friends and HER customers did the same thing, got online and ordered after getting their cards.
And somewhere, we’ve picked up four new customers for her and one new customer for me in the week since Christmas. That’s five customers in a week, that’s excellent! I would say these come from the articles that I wrote between Christmas and New Year’s. Need to definitely write some more!
A day in the life of a HealthyPetNet Rep
Work could update Lyme disease prevention tips
BRAINTREE — Jacqueline Flynn knew she was on to something, when, one by one, the ticks began to die. The science sleuth had been holed up in front of a clothes dryer for hours, watching and waiting as small mesh bags full of blacklegged deer ticks …
Read more on Boston Globe
ZANDI: The Unemployment Rate Will Tick Higher, And The Sequester Will Stall …
I expect payroll employment increased by 175K in March, and unemployment to tick higher to 7.8 percent. Hours worked should remain unchanged. The March job gain is consistent with growth experienced over the past year. … “Job gains were a bit stronger …
Read more on Business Insider
Boy Gets Rare Tick Infection from Blood Transfusion
Ehrlichiosis can go undetected because routine tests don't look for it, and many people do not realize they were bitten by a tick. In this case, which occurred during the summer of 2011, the boy's condition deteriorated over the course of 10 days until …
Read more on Yahoo! News
This is a similar photo to the one I put on Monte Carlo Daily Photo today. This adorable Westie and Bichon are on the terrace of a bar/restaurant in the beautiful medieval village of Eze, which is along the coast between Monaco and Nice. I don’t know the names of the dogs as I didn’t chat to the owners on this occasion.
Video Rating: 5 / 5
Rawhide bones are natural chew toys that most dogs like to gnaw on. Most vets agree that rawhide bones are good for a dog and have several benefits, but you need to be aware that there are also some health risks.
The rough surfaces of rawhide bones make them an almost irresistible treat for a dog to chew on and your dog can stay busy gnawing away at the bone for hours on end.
Most rawhide bones are good for your dog’s dental health. An added benefit may be that they can help in preventing a dog from chewing on your furniture and shoes.
If you’ve given your dog a rawhide bone or are considering buying one, you should be aware that these bones can also be bad for your dog. Larger pieces of rawhide bones can choke your dog by blocking its respiratory passageway. If your dog breaks off small chunks that can be swallowed, it could result in stomach problems or blockages of the dog’s intestinal tract which often requires surgery to remove.
Some dogs also develop allergic reactions to rawhide bones. Mere contact with the rawhide can irritate the skin of some dogs and requires treatment with medications. Rawhide bones that are sold in grocery stores usually have rough surfaces that can cause fractures of a dog’s teeth, or in severe cases could cause a fracture of the jaw bone. If splinters from the rawhide bone are swallowed without being properly chewed, they can puncture several of a dog’s organs.
If your dog is allergic to beef, don’t buy rawhide bones made from cattle. Instead, try one made from the skin of other animals like pigs.
Rawhide bones can also cause bacterial infections like salmonella because the rawhide that has been used to manufacture the bone may carry bacteria from the pig or cow it was made from. Luckily, most of these types of bacteria do not cause intestinal distress in a dog because the gastric acids in its system neutralizes the bacteria upon reaching the stomach.
Only you can decide if rawhide bones are good for your dog. You might choose to give your dog safer chew toys or treats in place of a rawhide bone. If one of your dog’s favorite pleasures is chewing on one of these bones, just be sure you buy the right sized bone to prevent your dog from choking, fracturing its teeth, or developing an intestinal blockage.
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I spend a lot of time thinking about customer service, and how we as veterinarians are sometimes so focused on being amazing clinicians we neglect to remember the fact that we are in a customer service industry. You can be the most astute diagnostician in the universe, but if your front desk staff or technician (or you!) is rude, ambivalent or just generally unpleasant, it ruins the whole client experience. It doesn’t take much to be minimally pleasant, but I’m amazed how uncommon that has become.
I’ve always held Disneyland to be the ultimate in the customer service experience. I remember going as a kid and being followed around the park by chipper young men in starched white uniforms, cheerily scooping up the popcorn we were dripping behind us. “Have a magical day!” they’d wink, and we did. The haunted mansion staff got really into being creepy. My friend, who worked there in high school and college, was taken to task for wearing non regulation pink lipstick. The Disneyland Experience was no joke. Yes, we knew it was fake and those cheery people went home and were crabby humans just like everyone else, but we all appreciated the artifice of good cheer.
I know things have changed a bit. Disney has gotten a little more corporate, the college aged employees too stuck in hipster mode to bring themselves to actually act like they’re happy, but I had no idea how bad it had gotten until this past week.
My aunt and uncle were visiting from Massachusetts, and my aunt decided she would like to enjoy Disneyland with my kids- who were on Spring Break. My aunt has MS and uses a wheelchair, which as she reminded me allows you some measure of benefit in the form of getting to enter the rides through the exits, thus a shorter line. The kids were happy to hear this.
Now I know Disneyland and I have had our moments in the past- the Splash Mountain debacle, for one, and a heartbreaking encounter with an accordion playing D-list celebrity I used to be a fan of, but still, I figured how could they screw this one up? All you have to do is make some reasonable accommodation for a disabled guest, blah blah Magic of Disney etc, right?
Yeah. It seems somewhere along the way they have forgotten some of Business Tactics 101, applicable to any place hoping to retain customers, be it your friendly local DVM or a once well regarded amusement park.
1. Staff appropriately.
Part of the problem was that we went during spring break, and I know this. That being said, I had to push my aunt hither and fro round each and every ride looking for some guidance as to where one might enter as it seemed like no one was actually working the line. We wandered through Indiana Jones’ exit line for 5 minutes before finding a line of wheelchairs 30 deep marinating in the shadows, staffed by an ambivalent kid in khakis who was not, I suspect, as into archaeology as he should be pretending to be.
2. Anticipate problems.
See someone trying to get through your front door with a huge crate as big as they are? You open the door for them. Same goes for someone trying to back a wheelchair onto a train platform before the door slams shut on someone’s neuropathic feet. Theoretically. It’s the little things, right?
3. Keep track of your clients.
I heard horror stories of a physician going home for the day, leaving an increasingly agitated client in an exam room who never got past the nurse. I think it’s reasonable for the person in charge of traffic flow to be keeping an eye on things to make sure no one gets left behind.
Which brings me to my most egregious Disney misadventure to date.
“Actually, we have 999 happy haunts residing here but, there’s always room for 1000. Any volunteers, hmmm?”
Anyone who has been on the haunted mansion is familiar with the ride itself: you step onto a moving conveyor belt and run into a little whirl-a-gig buggy thing, ride around for a while getting spooked, and then extricate yourself from said buggy back onto a moving platform. All fine and dandy for those without mobility issues, but it gets dicier when you’re moving slowly.
I entered the ride first, with my kids. My mother and aunt got on the buggy behind us, after asking the person running the line to slow it down so she could get on. This is SOP in these cases.
On the other end, I got off with the kids and they started up the one way escalator off the ride. I heard my mother behind me, saying, “Stop! STOP!” in louder and louder degrees of panic. Apparently, in a cost cutting measure they got rid of whoever normally stands at the far end to make sure people get off ok, and there was just one girl at the near end of the ride who couldn’t hear my mother yelling as there was a horde of 30 people pushing off past her. None of whom, by the way, seemed alarmed by my mother’s distress.
My children, sensing a disturbance and me pausing at the bottom of the escalator, were valiantly attempting to rush back down to me, only to be pushed up by people telling them not to goof off. I turned and saw only the sad sight of my aunt’s hand hanging out the side, waving sadly to us as she disappeared into a dark tunnel to join the 999 Happy Haunts in parts heretofore unseen.
I went up the escalator after my kids. A few minutes later, my mother appeared, sans aunt.
“Where is she?” I asked.
“They don’t know,” my mother responded, which seemed like a bizarre thing for them to have told her. I mean, she’s on a fixed belt and can’t walk, so one might think she would be easy to find. “They said she’ll probably pop up at the entrance.”
Probably. Else they found their thousandth happy haunt.
I went to the entrance, which is an entirely different area, to see if she might arrive there. No one knew where she was there either. My mother, having exited the turnstyle, couldn’t go back down to the exit to wait for her there. Eventually my aunt texted me: “Going through again.”
She did indeed make it back to the entrance, shocking the hell out of the people about to get in the cart with her. The person there stopped the ride and asked her off, but seeing as though her family and her wheelchair were now at the exit, she demurred. Eventually, she arrived back at the egress and had to pick her way, slowly and gingerly, up to the exit turnstyle where my son was frantically holding on to her chair. I had to explain to my kids why I was laughing so hard while we rolled right on out the park and back to our car, pooped.
“Because your auntie is a cool lady,” I said, marvelling. And she is.
On the bus ride back to the parking lot- which was incidentally the best ride of the day- we were helped by an old-timer named Clarence. “You don’t say,” he said, when we told him of our misadventures. “I’ve never heard that one before. Losing a lady on a ride.” He could barely kneel himself, but he helped me maneuver her chair down the bus ramp.
It’s the little things that stick with us in customer service. But all’s well that ends well; at least we got her back.
Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass – Spanish Flea (16th February 1967)
Video Rating: 4 / 5
National Geographic had a short blurb in the latest issue about the increasing incidence of celiac disease in humans. This disease has increased by 400% in the last few years. If case you’re not familiar with the medical term, Celiac disease is the collection of the many medical symptoms of allergies to the glutens present in grains. Celiac disease occurs when a sensitive person eats food made with wheat, barley, or rye. These three grains contain the highest amount of the troublesome indigestible protein. This protein is not broken down into amino acids, so it looks like more like a bacterial or viral invader. As the bigger gluten molecules float down and are absorbed through the bowel wall, the sensitive person’s immune system may attack and cause inflammation, diarrhea, and pain. The gluten allergy may also cause other medical issues as well as painful muscles and joints. Sometimes these medical problems may look like there is another cause when the inflammation is due to the gluten allergy.
When gluten is attacked, the immune army of cells and chemicals inflame the bowel walls, organs, and other tissues. Filtering organs like the liver or the membranes of the joints are commonly affected as they trap the toxic products of the chemical battle. Inflamed tissues hurt and don’t work as well as healthy tissues. Inflammation and swelling of those tissues cause discomfort and pain. That is how a food ingredient causes medical symptoms.
What does this have to do with dogs?
Gluten is cheap filler you will find on the label of many commercial foods, prescription diets, biscuits, dental chews, and treats. Gluten sensitive dogs will react to the gluten by itching, shaking their head, scooting, having diarrhea or blood in the stool( , and having red gooey ears that never seem to clear up. Seizures may even be caused by gluten containing treats or chews. Avoiding these “toxic treats” may help clear up itchy skin, ear infections, anal gland problems, bowel problems, and even seizures.
Purebreds prone to urinary tract issues like infections, crystals, and stones are often sensitive to glutens. If the prescription diet, geared for urinary issues, inflames the skin, ears, bowels, or causes seizures, that isn’t much help!
You have to read the labels of everything that your pet chews on or eats to help with medical issues due to food allergies. Make sure you are not “treating” your pet with gluten filled treats or chews. Gluten filled pill pockets are even sold. Beware of giving your pet a dose of the food ingredient that is making them sick!
Learn to feed like I do. Slow cooked meat and veggies, hypoallergenic commercial canned food, raw food, and healthy human food.Better ingredients and less allergens may make your dog and cat look and feel better!!
Check out Dog Dish Diet to learn more about better ingredients, obesity, and allergies. Check out Feed Your Pet to Avoid the Vet to learn how to slow-cook food for your dog and cat. Click on the title you are interested in and read more about them. Email me if you have questions firstname.lastname@example.org