Medical opinions sought after the facts

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Medical opinions sought after the facts

Postby redmoss » Sat Mar 14, 2009 8:38 am

Please share with me what you would have done if these were your dogs. (They’re a couple of my dogs so I’ll tell you what transpired after I get some input.)

Dog A: At least 12 year old AM pit bull
annual exam 7/05/08, no health issues noted

In August his appetite decreases a bit, still eating treats and most of meals, is depressed but is happily going on his daily walk. Vet appointment scheduled but no time available until a couple of weeks later.

Would you have waited or sought out another hospital?

Dog B: At least 13 year old SF pit bull
In October, decreased appetite for 3-4 days, has often skipped meals, but she didn’t eat for an entire day
loses weight
restless during night
urinates in house (not something she doesn't do on occasion)
issues seemingly resolve

At annual exam in November, mention episode and running blood work. Dr. doesn't feel blood work is warranted.

Would you have insisted on blood work? Or would you have already been to the vet back in October?

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Postby Sarah » Sat Mar 14, 2009 9:00 am

With my dogs, if the appetite ever decreases, I will consider it a serious emergency and we're going to the vet immediately. My dogs don't refuse food. Even when they've just gotten into the kibble and overeaten until their belly is huge, they still eat if food is offered.

That said, and assuming these dogs are not quite as food obsessed; with dog A, I would probably have sought a different hospital. With a younger dog, I might be willing to wait, but with an older dog, there are so many serious conditions that can come up quickly. The fact that the dog is depressed would concern me. I also wouldn't be very happy with the vet hospital for being so unconcerned about my senior pet's health.

With dog B, I would insist on bloodwork. I probably would not have taken the dog to the vet the previous month, since the primary symptoms were things that were not entirely unusual for the dog, and the other symptoms a bit vague and possibly behavioral. But a dog of that age should be having annual bloodwork anyway! I'd probably look for a new vet, actually.

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Postby elegy » Sat Mar 14, 2009 9:41 am

i couldn't go to a vet hospital that it took weeks to get into for a problem, even a "minor" problem. i just couldn't do it. so i would have had the dog seen elsewhere, especially if it were one of the dogs i have in this house who have never ever not devoured their meals in the space of two heartbeats.

for dog two, i would absolutely 100% be doing bloodwork and i'd be appalled that the dr didn't think it's warranted. it's hard to say whether i'd have been there in october since the dog is already an off-and-on eater. i guess it would depend if she was acting differently at all otherwise.

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Postby Misskiwi67 » Sat Mar 14, 2009 10:21 am

Both of those dogs should be getting bloodwork every 6 months just due to their age.

New vet :D


Postby msvette2u » Sat Mar 14, 2009 11:02 am

elegy wrote:i couldn't go to a vet hospital that it took weeks to get into for a problem, even a "minor" problem.

I agree.
Before Copper passed away, we noticed he had swelling in his abdomen.
I called the vet who we used to consider our "primary" vet, and they could not see him for a week.
I called our newer vet, (now considered our primary vet), the one we use for rescues, he was in THAT day.
And when he had an x-ray THAT same day, we discovered he had an enlarged spleen. I mean really big, 3 lbs. and the dog weighed 14lbs. on a good day.
That was a Tuesday I think and by Friday his spleen was taken out by our new-now primary vet clinic.

By the time the appt. with former "primary" vet rolled around, his spleen could have burst, it's a miracle it didn't in the week it took to discover, diagnose and treat the problem by removing the spleen.

So I'd answer your questions "sought out another hospital" and "yes".

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Postby Murfins » Sat Mar 14, 2009 1:11 pm

I agree with what has already been said. I would be finding a new vet, for sure.

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Postby FBODGRL » Sat Mar 14, 2009 1:56 pm

I agree with what has been said. I'd find a new vet.

My vet will get me in that day if I call with an issue. If I deem it to be "serious" yet not life threatening (for example Khan was throwing up all over) They will get us in immediately.

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Postby jtalt7 » Sat Mar 14, 2009 2:10 pm

Dog A:
If my vet really couldnt get me in by at least the next day I would find a new one. We always get sick apts in the day of or at the latest next day. Blood work should be run and repeated every 6 months if no abnormalities are found.

Dog B:
I would have found a new vet if I was ever told blood work was not warranted for a senior dog on a sick room especially. I would have my dog in ASAP and demanding blood work as those could be signs of organ failure.

I just dont get vets not letting their owners spend money if they are wanting to do it..........My seniors get blood work every 4 months and RJ was every month. Catching things early is key.

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Postby PitBull-Lady » Sat Mar 14, 2009 8:21 pm

wow. I feel really lucky. Our vet will fit us in if all else fails.

Is it a single vet in town?

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Postby Nanci » Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:22 am

I haven't had a dog emergency with my vet, yet, but I did have a perceived emergency last summer with my bearded dragon. It happened the fourth of July, which was a Friday, I think, so I held out and wanted to take her in Saturday, but my vet was closed for the holiday weekend! So I panicked and took her to the university exotic clinic, $200 to walk through the door as an emergency, and they were NO HELP at all. So Monday she got in at her regular vet, who told me, if that ever happens again, just leave a message, and they will see her off hours.

Dog A: (Well, my vet would talk to me on the phone and advise me) I'd probably not have been panicking. Dog B: I guess I'd suspect urinary issues and insist on coming in next day at the latest.

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Postby redmoss » Sun Mar 15, 2009 10:01 am

Thanks for the opinions. I wish I sought advice here instead of from my veterinarian. :(

Dog A, Thief died at home; he never made it to the vet.

Dog B, Moss was in renal failure.

On 11/22, the doctor mentioned that blood work done 2 years previously was fine and said something like, “Save your money for more important things.â€

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Postby ilikelily » Sun Mar 15, 2009 10:46 am

Seriously, don't beat yourself up.
Live and lean... and seek another opinion if your gut feels it is necessary.

Last month my dog woke up with a huge lump on his back. We really did not think much of it because he is known to violently flop around on his back. We just thought he has smacked it and it swelled up. He acting perfectly normal so we really had no concern. At that time he was technically our foster so we called the woman who runs the rescue just so she was informed. She immediately made him a vet appointment. We brought him in and the vet did not think much of it either. She gave him a steroid shot and sent him on his way. Told us that it might go away, or it might not- but not to worry either way. So we relayed what had happened at the vet to rescue woman, who made another appointment with a different vet. This vet was very concerned. Within a few weeks the lump was removed with a diagnosis of cancer. We had no idea. If it weren’t for Linda insisting we go back for a second opinion, we probably would not have.

It is pretty cool your guys lived to be 12 &13 years old! You must have been doing something right. :thumbsup: Seniors are my favorites; I would love to see pictures of them.

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Postby Murfins » Sun Mar 15, 2009 10:46 am

Wow. I am so very sorry. :sad:

Please do not beat yourself up (so much easier said then done, I know), you trusted your vet and I think most people do.

I trusted my vet in 2002 when after my 7yo cat was suffering from extreme bloatedness, almost constant crying and the vet said she was very constipated. A week later with medication and lots of bowel movements, there way no change in Ouisie's physical or behavioral state, she ran x-rays and blood tests and diagnosed her with FIP. She said my cat was in pain and suffering a great deal and nothing was helping her ... she suggested immediate euthanasia and I TRUSTED her. I didn't want my girl to suffer. The vet did an autopsy ... NO sign of FIP ... what she thought was fluid build up was FAT!! I euthanised my cat because she was FAT. I still cannot forgive myself and it's been 7 years. From that day forward, I never again put 100% trust in any vet. When my animals are diagnosed with something serious, we get second opinions.

Again, I am so very sorry that your dogs and you had to suffer because of this very negligable vet. *hugs*


Postby msvette2u » Sun Mar 15, 2009 11:25 am

You trusted your vet, we all do, as a rule.
Don't beat yourself up - just learn from your mistake :hug:

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Postby BrokenAquarian » Sun Mar 15, 2009 12:57 pm

I've learned that vets(and doctors) are just people who went to school. School isn't a magical place that makes them any different from us. Most of their knowledge comes from a text book anyway.
Sadly, they can be just as arrogant and/or stupid as anyone else.
I'm not saying that there aren't great vets out there, because there are :)
But, there are LOTS of bad ones too.

* Always go to the vet if there's a problem with your animal.

* Always do your own research on the problem.

* Always get a second opinion if it's something that you might question or if the treatment to the problem is serious/worrying/dire.

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