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To be a bit narked my vet couldn't spell my pet's name?

(20 Posts)
OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 00:42:27

My cat had to be pts a couple of weeks ago. Although upset, I'm not devastated, it was for the best and saved her suffering. I'm not overly-emotional about it, though I do miss her.

She was a black cat, and I gave her a "witchy" name, as I did with a previous black cat, who was called Hecate. This one was called Lilith. I'm not a witch, I'm an atheist, but it amuses me to give black cats "witchy" names. I'm fairly sure it doesn't bother the cats any.

But I'm annoyed that the (lovely, and thoughtful) condolence card from the vet spelt her name Lillith.

And, on having received her cremains today, I'm even more narked that they included a "certificate of cremation" and an engraved urn, both spelt Lillith.

I have googled, and Lillith is not a common spelling of Lilith; I could have forgiven if it were.

It cost me £100 to have my very small cat supposedly individually cremated. (I have my doubts, but y'know...) Should I expect her name to be spelt correctly?

(I'm not proposing complaining, or insisting that the urn is re-engraved, btw. I'm not crying myself to sleep. But I am ever so slightly narked. They did so much to be "nice" about the death of my pet, but couldn't spell her name!)

PrincessBabyCat Sat 07-Jun-14 00:45:48

I'd be irritated. I thought you had to fill out forms for cremation stuff? That's how it worked with my pets.

I'd probably have them redo it to be honest. For that much money, they can spell Lilith's name correctly.

Sorry for you loss btw. thanks

AgentZigzag Sat 07-Jun-14 00:49:44

YANBU to be narked, but by the sounds of it there was no malice or thoughtlessness in how they cared for you/Lilith, and that's the main thing.

Is it possible her name was written down wrong by one person who genuinely didn't notice the difference (if it was taken over the phone or being transferred from one record to another)?

It's easily done.

How old was she?

luridshorts Sat 07-Jun-14 00:52:42

I'm very sorry for your loss but I do think YABU.

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 00:59:07

I don't think for a second there was any malice, and it's complicated by the fact that it was my dyslexic adult son who actually took her in, for what we were told would be routine dental surgery, but, under GA, turned out to be much more serious. I'm not blaming the vet at all for any of that, they did what they had to do and that's fine.

I am only slightly narked on my own behalf, and tbh it the pedant in me that's irked.

But I do wonder how more sensitive pet owners might feel, if their pet's name was spelt wrong on their urn?

Virgolia Sat 07-Jun-14 01:16:32

I think you've diverted from the fact at hand by all the Wiccan naming etc..(said as someone who practises Wicca)

But at whole YANBU. I'd expect them to spell it correctly!

BernardlookImaprostituterobotf Sat 07-Jun-14 01:34:44

Her name will probably have been copied from her notes so this is probably a spelling error when she was registered.

Most receptionists check spelling for exactly this reason, if not owners usually amend as soon as we go through consent forms - we ask all details are confirmed so right pet name (just to make sure we don't have the wrong file for all the lovers of Ginger, Ginger I, Ginger II etc).
As many pet owners as parents give yooneek names so you never know if Ginger will be spelt Jjinjer.
If it's right on there then someone had a brain fart - not ok but unfortunately we are all human.

I'm sorry for your loss, you sound like you have the security of a good decision. I'm sorry her name was incorrect, I'd call them for a new name plate, it would be highly unusual for a practice not to try and correct a mistake.

Sometimes spelling mistakes will happen, sometimes they slip through even though everyone I know double checks because we feel it's important. If it happens we try to rectify it.
The number of people that get pissed at me about checking paperwork though, they'd sign any damn thing if they didn't have to go through it with you, you ask them to check, they don't. Sometimes you're damned if you do...

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 01:38:09

I didn't actually make a Wicca connection when I named her, it was more Xtian, (my former religion) in that Lilith was Adam's first (disobedient) wife, made at the same time as Adam. Genesis has two creation stories, one featuring a wife created at the same time (like all other species) who refused to submit to him (Lilith) and the other featuring the wife and helpmeet who was created from his rib. (Eve, obv). As an ex-Xtian, this appealed to me; the renegade female and all that.

But the origin of her naming is largely unimportant; the mis-spelling of her name is the issue. I think ds simply spoke her name, and the vet assistant wrote it down in her own spelling, and no-one checked.

Which I completely understand, and maybe I should have phoned when they (very kindly) sent a condolence card. As I said, I'm neither devatated nor sobbing, just narked on my own behalf, but should I mention it for other pet-owners in the future?

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 01:44:44

Sorry, Bernard, xposted with you. Again, tbf to the vet surgery, she'd never been there before, so no notes, and no registration. I'm honestly not looking to make a fuss, or to blame anyone. Would it be expensive to have the urn thingy redone, do you know? That annoys me most.

(And fuck knows what I'm planning to do with the urn, I'm toying with the idea of displaying it on the mantlepiece, in true Victorian fashion...) grin

AgentZigzag Sat 07-Jun-14 01:55:02

Could you write/call (whichever's easiest for you) and tell them about it as the main reason for contacting them, but pad it by saying all the things they got right.

Saying you don't want it to happen to someone else is a legit reason for saying it, even though them getting it wrong is enough in itself.

I had to look up what 'xtian' was grin


OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 02:06:44

I think that might be an idea.

The x in "xtians" comes from the Ancient Greek symbol which I can't recreate with this keyboard, but it sounded like "ch". It's a kind of wavery X. <did Ancient Greek about 35 years ago>

I didn't invent Xtians, and I don't mean it to be insulting, aplols to anyone who sees it that way.

Eastpoint Sat 07-Jun-14 02:26:43

If she'd never been there before & went with your adult dyslexic son is it possible he spelled her name wrong?

OneDayWhenIGrowUp Sat 07-Jun-14 02:26:59

I'm sorry for your loss. It's ok to be emotional about losing her btw!

We usually confirm the spelling of pet's names when they are registered - it sounds like you weren't there when that happened? Unless it is a particularly unusual spelling, I generally won't question it at other times (as the converse happens; clients of more creatively-named pets get annoyed when every time I see their cat for a nail clip I check, ''is her name really spelled like that?'') If her name was spelled with a double l on the consent form, which was signed by an owner/agent, then it will be taken from there. I agree with Bernard about damned if you do!

YANBU to be upset about the mis-spelling, that is completely understandable, but a bit U to expect the vets to have been psychic about name spelling, if they had a signed form with her name spelled that way. (and as an aside, a bit U to question the individual cremation aspect in that way in your OP- that really irks me sometimes, it's like people questioning our professionalism, accusing us of pretending to arrange for their pet to be individually cremated whilst we pocket the difference or something).

The urns themselves are about £30 usually. As for what to do with them - each to their own! My dog's ashes are on the side, next to a lovely photo of him. They're only there temporarily though until the whole family can be together to scatter him, but as that's going to be months and months away, I chose a pretty casket for him for the meantime.

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 03:01:45

Eastpoint, I think he just spoke her name, and the vet assistant wrote it down. I don't have a problem with that, I understand that humans make mistakes.

Oneday, I totally understand your point; I wasn't there, ds wouldn't have known any better, and so yes, I concede, I may be/am being ur. And i'm sorry - truly - that you feel I undermined your professionalism re cremains. I hope that when people pay for individual cremations that's what they actually get, but how can you (as a vet?) or I be certain? I'm inclined to want to believe that people are honest, but I've read horror stories of folk getting the "ashes" of their deceased human rellies and they're not related at all. Why would I believe any different for animal cremains?

I want to believe that I have what I paid for. Generally, I do believe that. (And I'm a bit weirded out about how small my cat ended up.)

But I'm not going to give my cat's cremains any sort of, I dunno, special place... Gah. Not sure now what I even think.

When my dog was cremated, it was on an "individual" basis. We planned to scatter him on the beach where he played as a pup, many years before he died. He's still in the cupboard...

BernardlookImaprostituterobotf Sat 07-Jun-14 03:25:22

Because most people are professional - in the same way a human funeral home is run by criminals if they deliberately incorrectly cremate, log or return ashes so too would the animal home be. Most people are not criminals.
We, and most of the service users of my acquaintance, go and visit these places and sign up only if they are happy with the whole protocol. Some practices use more than one provider to better tailor to client wishes.
A majority of the practices in the country use an actual third party cremation provider. We don't chuck them in backyard furnace and just scoop an appropriate amount of ashes into a box.
One of the reasons we are in this profession is respect - respect, dignity and compassion for animal and owner don't lessen once they die, many times you have a personal connection too but at the very least you are respectful. It's a little insulting how many people do explicitly express their view that we 'fuck it off and chuck it out' probably because we have golf or the pub or our mansion to get back too.
Little do they know I practice my drives from the bar on my yacht.

As to the question - it depends on the company, ours will replace a misspelled plate f.o.c. It won't come from the vet directly so they'll probably have to call. 'Culpability' wise iyswim, if it's the vets' mistake then it would be free as we would pay any cost the company passed on. Tbh I cannot bring to mind a time that anyone has ever paid. It'll be a few quid -
I would call and mention it but it doesn't sound like procedural issue - either a nurse didn't check which will have been an omission, shouldn't be habit, or your son didn't see/didn't realise it was incorrect.
That doesn't change

BernardlookImaprostituterobotf Sat 07-Jun-14 03:33:44

Fucking phone - sorry.

Price wise will likely be under a fiver. If you are expected to pay at all.

That doesn't change...
That it happened and shouldn't have, the surgery will want to know about it and will probably want to get a new name plate to you. It is upsetting and now this is just a little extra layer of irritation on top, nobody will have wanted that to happen. The nurse will probably be embarrassed, peed off with herself and will forever more spell Lilith correctly.

Also apologise for the tone of the first part of my post, it was inappropriate and I'm sorry. I usually edit but apparently my phone decided that's only for iPhone users. I am also obviously getting paid every time I use the word respect blush

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 03:50:50

Thank you Bernard, that's really helpful. And I totally apologise to those people who I miscalled earlier. I was, obv, very wrong, and I can say no more than "Sorry, I was very wrong"

OldLadyKnowsSomething Sat 07-Jun-14 03:55:31

Ach, Bernard, we've had a bit of an xpost. But you've given me food for thought, all good, eh?

desertmum Sat 07-Jun-14 07:11:53

if your cat was having surgery there would have been consent forms to sign with the animal's name on them. It is possible it was mis spelt on those forms and not noticed.

If you contact the vets they will, I am sure, get the engraving changed. We check all urns and boxes that are returned to ensure the pet's name is spelt correctly which I think is usual practice at most vets. They will be upset at the mistake and I am sure try to put it right if you want it doing.

RinkyTinkTen Sat 07-Jun-14 07:23:11

YANBU, we had this with our beloved dog who got run over, her name ended with an a but it was spelt with an e.

Gives me the rage every time I see it.


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