Scott Balcher, a veterinarian with a practice in Hemet, CA wasn’t expecting much November 12th of 2011, it was a rainy day, his small animal clinic had few appointments and a couple of cancellations, so when a new client walked in with an injured dog he was able to devote time right away. His was a new practice, not many clients, and walk-ins were welcome. The dog, Scooter, that Carline Wilkins carried in was the victim of an auto accident, and though he looked like he was in bad shape Balcher quickly determined that the injuries essentially superficial and that with a few stitches Scooter would be on the road to recovery. So he patched the dog up, doing the best possible under the circumstances, the injuries would necessarily result in some permanent disfigurement, but aside from looking a little screwy Scooter would heal up fine. Little did he realize that a chain of events had begun that would change his practice, and his life, profoundly.
Carline, as it happened, was a volunteer at a San Diego animal shelter. Scooter was her own dog and she was very pleased with the results of Dr. Balchers work, so she went to the trouble of soliciting his services on behalf of the shelter she worked for, Scott was happy to help out on a quid pro bono basis and began to devote a few hours a month, limiting his services solely to animals with cosmetic injuries.
July of 2011 the animal shelter noticed an interesting trend in their adoptions. Animals that had previously been kenneled for many months before adoption were now being snapped up in weeks. In fact, the number of requests at the shelter was up significantly and the animals being adopted were mostly the animals Dr. Balcher had helped. Then Carline, who worked in the IT department spotted an interesting trend, most of the uptick in adoptions were not just the dogs the vet had worked on, but also the more severely maimed animals. She discovered this just as things got weird for Dr. Balcher.
DVM Scott Balcher got another walk-in client, someone asking for something more than just an ear-bob and tail-docking. This customer wanted something specific, and had a picture of the end result. The picture was of Scooter. Balcher was a bit taken aback, Scooter was no beauty with his snaggley teeth, kinked tail, eyebrows askew and pie-bald patches, but Balcher didn’t see a much difference between what his new client was asking and a rhinoplasty. So he performed the procedure. And the client couldn’t have been happier. And all the referrals he sent to Balcher were just as equally pleased. So pleased that DVM Scott Balcher actually changed his practice to strictly performing plastic surgery for his clients dogs. Word got out and as his land-office business began to attract attention his relationship with the San Diego animal shelter went sour.
Carline Wilkins had a bit of the idealist in her and the shelter soon followed suit. Balcher was asked not to volunteer his time there anymore, which was OK with him, his new practice kept him busy enough anyway. But the negative publicity campaign launched against him by Wilkins has gotten on his nerves. Carline devotes a good part of her free time, which is ample, to her website, crazymutt.com and her google+ page, both of which denounce the practice of plastic surgery or animals. Was it mentioned before that Scooter looks a great deal like a chupacabra and that is the most common request of DVM Balcher?