Daily Paws

Pet news, tips, entertainment and opinions from VetLocator.com

Posts Tagged ‘pet death’

What would you do if your pet died during a routine vet visit?

Sunday, February 13th, 2011
Dog dies during routine vet visitI’m sorry to even write such a thing, especially because it’s my opinion that the vast – read that to mean just about all – majority of doctors and staff at a veterinary hospital, do what they do because of care and concern for pets.

But that’s just what happened to a woman recently who took her dog in for routine teeth cleaning only to receive a call later that day that the unthinkable had happened…her dog had died.  Somehow the oxygen used during sedation was hooked up incorrectly by a technician…..

The hospital is one with a good reputation and they’ve been in business for many years.  In fact the veterinarian and the hospital owner don’t have one complaint against them on their record.

However the woman was devastated.  She still cries when she speaks of her lost dog, even though she now shares her life with a new puppy.

Here’s what the hospital did after the tragedy:
1.  They (obviously) did not charge the woman.
2.  They paid for the cost of a new dog.
3.  They issued an apology both to her and publically.
4.  They developed new guidelines so no future animal
suffers the same fate for this procedure.

So here are my questions to you:
1.  Did the hospital do enough?
2.  In cases such as this, do you think there should be any State/legal involvement?
3.  Is there more you’d like to see published on incidents such as these?

“We don’t get into the field for anything other than our love for animals, but at the end of the day, we are human and things go wrong. This will haunt me until the end of my career.”

A tragedy.

Tell us what you think?  Leave your comments below:

Daily Paws

What if your pet gets sick, you get help..but then your pet dies anyway?

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010
Image by andy castro via Flickr

Every once in awhile I’ll come across something someone has written that so perfectly showcases challenges a pet parent will face one day that I don’t want to even try to give my take on it.

And that’s how I feel about this blog post that I discovered recently.  It perfectly shows what we’ll all be faced with at some time and very importantly what your vet’s responsibility in those scenarios are and what YOURS are as well.

Well written from the point of a veterinary technician, someone who sees these dramas played out on a daily basis.


What if….

Scenario 1:

What if your pet was very sick and when you took them to the vet they said that they didn’t know what was wrong with him, just take him home and make him comfortable. No offer of any diagnostics whatsoever. Then your pet died.

Scenario 2:

What if your vet did offer you diagnostics? But you elected to not have them done, it doesn’t matter the reason. Then your pet died.

Which scenario is the fault of the veterinarian?

Scenario 3:

What if your vet was given permission to do the diagnostics, got an idea what could possibly be wrong but wasn’t sure without further testing, but didn’t offer it to you because the testing was quite expensive and your pet died?

Scenario 4:

What if the vet did offer to do further testing you declined and your pet died?

Which scenario is the fault of the veterinarian.

Scenario 5:

Okay, you opted for all the possible testing, the vet made a definitive diagnosis, knew of a fantastic treatment protocol that could (nothing in life is a guarantee) save your dog BUT it’s very expensive and maybe your pet would die anyway. So the vet elects to not even mention it, after all, why would anyone want to spend that kind of money on a pet? Your pet dies a week later after treatments that were much more affordable and could possibly save your pet…but doesn’t.

Scenario 6:

Same as #5 but this time the vet DOES offer you the expensive treatment that you decline due to cost. Sadly the outcome is the same as #5.

Scenario 7:

Same as #5, but this time you opt to go for the more expensive treatment and though things look pretty good at first, your pet dies anyway. 🙁

Which scenario is the fault of the veterinarian?

If you said; #1, #3 and #5 you would be correct.

Does that make you at fault for the others? Absolutely not!!! Sometimes, our beloved pets die, no matter how much money we throw at their problem, no matter how much we love them. It sucks, but it’s not ALL about blame.

The problem that I’m trying to outline (I never claimed to be a writer folks, LOL) is that a veterinarian is under a moral & legal obligation to offer to you every thing that he or she knows is available that may help your pet when it is ill. It’s not a financial obligation. It’s what’s right. It would be downright mean and irresponsible to not inform you of ALL of your options to help your friend and companion.

Your obligation is to do what you’re capable of doing.

Don’t feel guilty because you can’t afford a treatment out of your financial capacity, it’s okay.

I can’t afford a lot of treatments for my own pets either. It hurts like hell, but it’s the truth. We hear stories of people taking out a 2nd mortgage for cancer treatments and the like for the pets, but they’re not common. One client I know sold her car! That was what THEY chose to do, but it’s not expected, by any stretch of the imagination, for every pet owner to do so.

Don’t be shy, say no if you need to do so. Above all…don’t feel guilty. It really is OK that you can’t afford an MRI, expensive cancer treatments or thousands of dollars worth of testing.

Nancy Campbell, RVT (Registered Veterinary Technician)


Linda Ferguson

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