Monday, October 23, 2006

Taxi drivers who refuse to ferry pets

Yesterday, it was drizzling when we took Yoda to the vet. We use a boxy, soft carrier that looks just like those traveller bags given out free by the travel agencies. Unless one takes a closer look, most people wouldn't know that it's a pet carrier, much less that it contains a cat. Since Yoda had diarrhea, I took the trouble to time my feeding so as to make sure that he wouldn't poo in the taxi while on our way to the vet.

The first empty cab came by and stopped for us. Upon opening the taxi's door, the driver took one look and refuse to take us as passengers. I asked why not, but he simply refused again. Another empty taxi came by, and probably having seen the first cab driving off, did not even bother to stop for us.

In all my years of taking sick cats to the vet, this was the first time I've had to face such a situation, and it happened not just once, but twice within minutes of each other! Both cabs are Comfort taxis.

Henceforth, I shall boycott Comfort Taxis as far as I can help it.

Luckily, the third cab that came had no issue with picking us up. The driver was very neatly dressed and spoke politely in impeccable English as we chatted in the cab about his unique name. It was a CityCab taxi.

I must also say that although pets are officially not allowed on buses, I have had no trouble taking cats in carriers on the buses, on those trips where it was possible for me to take a bus. Most drivers are tolerant, and so were the passengers I'd encountered.

As for Yoda, he didn't poo during the commute, nor did he make any noise. After visiting the vet, we even walked to the hawker centre nearby for a late lunch before taking Yoda home. Yoda was either in a "meditative" state or slept most of the time.

13 comments:

KXBC said...

I have had no problems with buses either nor taxis except there was one time the taxi driver wanted me to put the carrier + the cat in the boot. I said "you siao ah" and slammed shut the door but not before giving him a dirty look. I was in a rush for time then, if not I would have given him a piece of my mind and asked him if he would put his children in the boot.

cat_aunty said...

Very unfortunate. Most of the time I use the pet carrier. So if the taxi driver is phobic, he doesn't have to stop for me. Most Malay drivers would ask if I have a cat or a dog. I guess dog is a no-no for them

cat_aunty said...

I stopped using the public transport 6 years ago, because Spencer SCREAMED so loudly that it was too embarrasing

vegancat said...

Is there any prohibition of pets in proper carriers in taxis? If not, then it is time taxi companies make a statement and come out with guidelines on how pets should travel in a cab. Would a complaint to Comfort be of value?

jennifer_yq said...

i also had no problem with cats in taxi..at most, the malay uncle will ask me if it is a cat that i am carrying in the carrier and i can understand the reason....

but since we are keepin it locked in a carrier, i do not understand why taxi driver do not want to have cats in their taxi.it is not that we will open the carrier door and let the cat walk inside the taxi...wonder what were the two driver thinking when they refused to take u....

Cat said...

I've had a couple of nasty encounters with taxi drivers (Comfort & others) when I ferry Chaos & other feline friends to the vet.

These days, I just make a booking & made sure the operator is aware that I have a cat in a cage. In fact Comfort now has it in their database - Cat with a cat in the cage. Once I booked a taxi to go to a dinner appt & the driver asked - 'where's the cat in the cage?' :)

auntie p said...

I did initially, but unfortunately I forgot to take down the taxi's no.

On the other hand, I can understand the taxi driver's viewpoint. For example, if they ferry a drunk person who vomits in the taxi, the driver will have to send his car for cleaning and airing so that the smell goes away - all of which means lost time and lost earnings. I guess it's the same reason for not ferrying pets, in case the pet gets sick or poo in the car.

Since it's not easy to make a living nowadays, so better not make things harder for them.

auntie p said...

Cat aunty: most cats will make some noise while travelling on the bus, so I used to take buses for short distances only. Otherwise, I agree it can be embarrassing.

auntie p said...

Oops...my first reply got truncated accidently.

I mean to say: I did think of complaining to Comfort initially, but I didn't take down the taxi's car plate no.

san said...

After the day when 3 cab drivers told me "NONO!" and drove off, I have taken to booking cabs when taking the amigos to the vet or groomer. Bujang will complain very loudly before, in and after the ride. Toro will complain before but he likes going for rides adn would spend the time looking at the scenery. I would say "I have a cat in a carrier" when booking. I have to do this all the time though unlike Cat. Hmmm.... I once took my cat Megat(now deceased)in a bus when travlling from Jalan Ubi to Bedok and he kept complaining. I got some weird looks from the commuters but nobody complained.

Mary said...

i have checked with citicab and have been informed the drivers have the right to reject any customers, with or without carriers.

auntie p said...

Oh...

Thanks Mary, for the enlightenment!

kuro.shiro.neko said...

here's my take :

i have learnt to just flag down a cab and pretend i am carrying normal stuff (carrier or soft bag). i dont even tell them its a cat.

most of the time, the drivers dont care. if you are bothered and show it, perhaps they would be "kan cheong" too and wonder mah.

human beings are very funny one. if you "panick" or show some nervousness, i guess they also second guess and perhaps reject you. but if you hold your ground, and just take for granted that "you will take me to my destination", perhaps your ride will be smoother?

same goes for buses. my hubby just board the bus and feign ignorance. of course, it doesn help if you have a quiet cat lah!

only exception is mrt, everything also cannot.