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Archived Message

Where to report a Vet?

ORIGINAL MESSAGE:
by Chuck Norman

We are very dissatisfied with the 2 vets who have seen our Princess during this recent illness she has had. We have been to the vet a total of 7 times now in the last 3 weeks. Today I took her to the vet for what was to be her final surgery to remove the barbed pine needles that she ingested into her sinuses. She had to go back today because the vet said she didn't have the right tool to remove the last of the needles during the first surgery. Our baby sat 4 hours in a cage before the vet called to tell us she had the wrong tool. The problem has been going on for over 3 weeks now! The first vet misdiagnosed the problem by calling her clogged breathing a cold. Frustrating!!! Does anyone know where you can report a vet. This would never go if a human were involved!

DISCUSSION:

Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

I am so sorry for the worry and anguish you (and Princess) have been through. I have watched for your posts and thought about Princess many times in the last couple weeks. No, I don't know where to report a vet. A friend of ours who is a vet has said, "What do you call the person who was last in my class? Doctor!" I guess that means that not every vet is the greatest--most are probably just average. Your concern and frustration are understandable, but . . reagrding the first, now known to be wrong, diagnosis--my vet usually tries the least-invasive, potential remedy first, and moves on if it doesn't work. Could this be the case? Regarding the "wrong-sized" tool---well, Maltese are small, but so are cats, puppies, etc. I don't know what to think. For your own peace of mind, you've got to find a vet you trust with Princess's life. I hope your darling is better soon.
-Maria

I am not going to be of any help either regarding knowing where to report a vet, although I think that mine has a bulletin posted on his board as to where to send complaints. I would think this would be mandatory, but maybe not. Perhaps you could call another vet in your town for the information, or the Better Business Burea. If there is an university near you, perhaps the library or the animal science program would have it. Like Maria, I mainly wanted to say that I hope Princess is doing ok. I also have thought of her often and hope she has a full recovery. As for your vet, at least the second one did diagnose correctly, and at least she did not try to do something she knew she could not do safely. Though it has been frustrating to you, restraint on her part seems to reflect some wisdom as well. She may have acted on the best behalf of Princess by not proceeding further than she could safely go. Once Princess recovers, you might have more information on which to base such a call, like how she has managed the after care, etc. Good luck to Princess and you both.
-Beverly

You could try your state licensing agency. In FL we have the Department of Professional Regulation. They sent me a form to fill out a formal complaint, but also let me know how overburdened they were and not to bother unless there was at least a $2,500.00 loss, and to first contact an attorny etc. etc. It was discouraging and I did not follow through with it but I do make sure to tell everyone I know how I was treated by the veterinarian. I guess a bad reputation will do more harm to the veterinarian than a formal complaint. I also make sure to say great things about the vets that I am happy with, which helps their reputation. And by the way, YES, these bad things happen to humans as well, with no more recourse than mentioned above. Fortunately, FL has recently put the names on the internet of human physicians with liability claims paid out. Hope the vets' names are posted some day too. Try to see the positives in your situation and not get too angry. It could have been worse! Good Luck!
-DLS


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