Sad Reminder, Unfortunate Business Practice

Sep 22 2011 Published by under Wackaloonacy

In October 2009 we adopted a kitten. Ozzie was a little ball of fire, with the loudest purr I have ever heard. Unfortunately, he caught feline infectious peritonitis and died after a short 4 months in our home.

Thanks for the reminder

Today we received a notice from Home Again, asking us to renew his registration for their lost pet service. Not a piece of direct mail, but a personalized, addressed-to-my-husband email.

Home Again registers those identification chips that allow lost pets to, well, go home again. Willow, the Colorado cat who was reunited with her (original) owners after several years and a trip to Manhattan, provides the most recent example of the success of this type of program.

When Ozzie's ninth life ended, we really didn't think about the chip thing. We figured that the vet would recover it prior to cremation, or that the latter process would take care of it. When we did not renew the subscription last year, we thought that would end it. We would have thought that our move and the elimination of the account email would end our correspondence with the service, but this morning my husband got another reminder. They must have cross-referenced to our other cat's registration.

I realize that persistence of this sort is necessary in a service business. I know the monetary cost of sending that email is trivial.

I just wish Home Again provided an easy link for noting that you no longer have the pet in question.

We have moved on. Dottie Hinson Lane (named for the Gina Davis character in A League of Their Own) has lived with us since April 2010, and she is chipped. We will continue her registration. We believe in this process.

[Dottie is fearless, energetic, athletic, and persistent. Her "wake-up love bite" this morning brought to mind the honey badger or instructions from The Oatmeal. But I digress.]

Being reminded of a dead pet once a year just puts a sad spin on your day.

6 responses so far

  • brooksphd says:



  • Natalie says:

    The name Dottie Lane for a cat is amazing.

    • Pascale says:

      My daughter (when 4 years old) named our first cat John Denver Lane; we called him Denver. Her current cat is Ella, after Ella Fitzgerald.

      Ozzie was named for Ozzie Smith, Cardinal Hall-of-Fame Shortstop. We decided to continue with baseball names, but we couldn't bring ourselves to give a girl cat a boy name. According to my husband and son, Dottie Hinson is the woman in baseball to them.

  • Moopheus says:

    While the persistence is on the one hand somewhat reassuring (if your pet were really lost, they would really try to find you), I get what you mean. I have the same problem with 1-800-pet-meds.

  • MovableBookLady says:

    I took my very sick cat to his long-time vet to have him put down after a long struggle with feline leukemia. The vet people were appropriately solemn; they commiserated; they provided a (human) coffin-shaped box to take him home in. One month later, I get a postcard from that vet office trumpeting the news that there was now a vaccine for feline leukemia and please bring my cat in for his shot.

    I was offended enough to call them up and chew them out for insensitivity.

    • Pascale says:

      Wow. Our vets were great; they make donations to their vet med school for every pet they take care of that dies. I have those memorials and sympathy cards stashed away with each cat's ashes.

      Sorry you had such a bummer of an experience. Almost as good as when people called me to schedule baby pictures after the child was stillborn. I'm pretty certain my reaction will keep that from happening again.

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