Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner

1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Can't they technically diagnose your dog with some random kind of disease and make you pay absurds amount of money for you to get it treated? I know I'm being awfully cynical here, but after my experiences with some veterinarians (and these were qualified, accredited facilities) I don't think I can trust these places.

My neighbor once told me that her dog was diagnosed with cancer and only had a few months to live. Her vet pushed and pushed her into getting a $15,000 treatment for her, and told her that if they didn't do the treatment, the dog had very little chance of surviving. This didn't work out financially so she went to another vet for a second opinion and this vet told her that therapy and treatments might work. Two years later and the dog is perfectly fine, and as healthy as she could be.

Now for my own personal experience. I went to the vet a few days ago, for his yearly vaccinations, and just a routine check up. When I got there, I told them about a pimple-looking thing he had on his neck. It looks like nothing malignant, but looks like swelling he got from a cut, but the vet insisted that we check if it's a tumor that's malignant, so after persistently asking us to get it checked out, we shelled out 200 dollars to get it sent for testing. Now, I've seen tumors and other malignant types of swelling, but this was nothing. The funny apart about this was the fact that the vet wanted us to buy 55 dollars worth of antibiotics (keep in mind that the vet has no idea what this swelling is) to treat him.

And before someone asks: yes, I do understand that this is a business. But can't they make money without taking advantage of the fact that I do not have extensive knowledge about animals and at the same time taking advantage of my animal that I care for?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,837 Posts
Technically, any one can try to do any thing, but it doesn't mean people do. Cost will vary, and it doesn't necessarily mean any thing either way.

And as for your dog, well, did YOU know what the bump on his neck was? I suppose not since that was why you were at the vet, and if it was nothing by your diagnosis you wouldn't have asked at all. Just like human medicine there is a lot to diagnostics. It doesn't sound like they were trying to rip you off, and you have the option of saying no.

Not all vets are created equal. Like any thing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,584 Posts
live your life with the constant threat of a lawsuit for not doing enough/ not doing the right diagnostic tests/not trying the right treatment, and let me know how it goes.

it sucks, but human doctors do the same thing. there are far too many people willing to sue because the vet "didn't do enough," so vets have to cover their butts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,193 Posts
I have a dog who fell paralyzed on a retrieve two or three months ago. We are a couple grand into this experience and have absolutely NO IDEA what happened or why. I don't feel cheated at all. My vet has done the best he could given the parameters of what I am willing to do. I have a dog that is living a pretty decent life now, but we are living in fear and near certainty that it will happen again.

It's called "practicing medicine." It's tough. It's expensive if you are trying to deal with something unusual. I don't think that most vets are crooks. Sometimes it's just really hard.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I have a dog who fell paralyzed on a retrieve two or three months ago. We are a couple grand into this experience and have absolutely NO IDEA what happened or why. I don't feel cheated at all. My vet has done the best he could given the parameters of what I am willing to do. I have a dog that is living a pretty decent life now, but we are living in fear and near certainty that it will happen again.

It's called "practicing medicine." It's tough. It's expensive if you are trying to deal with something unusual. I don't think that most vets are crooks. Sometimes it's just really hard.
Money isn't really an obstacle for me, I just don't like feeling cheated. But I guess vets do what they do to avoid lawsuits, and to stay safe so I guess it's understandable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,936 Posts
I took Misty to the vet for a sudden very large lump on her breast(like 4 inches) and blood comming from her nipple, the vet started pricing up the thousands it would cost me to remove it, test it etc.. and if I didnt she would die...I went home in tears because I didnt have that kind of money and I was being told that if they didnt remove it she would die and if they did and missed some she would die etc... I took her instead to a holistic vet, paid her $100 for a 30 minut consult, she looked at it, said try a cancer diet, and lower her stress level..within a month it was entirly gone. best $100 bucks I ever spent.

another clinci here charges people randomly by there mood, seriously I know people who work at this clinic and they have told me that the vets will tell them to charge people more or less for things based on their(the vets) mood! I know I had to take my rabbit to that clinic a year ago as she has chronic pastuerellosis and it was flairing up and her regular vet was out of town, we knew what it was and what she needed and for how long...she needed the meds for 30 days min. this is standard for the illness, this vet looked at her, confirmed what we already knew, gave us ONE WEEK of meds charged us $100 and said come back in a week! , a week later, vet was still out of town, she was obviously still sick, he forced us to bring her back for another "exam", gave us another week of meds and charged us another $100. bu this point our regular vet was back in town, so we tranfered treatment over to her...she gave us a month worth of meds, charged $20 for it, gave us the exam for free and sent us on our way, and called the next day from home to ask how she was doing.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,365 Posts
My Pug struggles with Demodex. Now, if my vet only cared about money, she'd have me bring him in for the conventional treatment with ivermectin every time he has an outbreak, like the regular vet clinic did the first time he had an outbreak, and I had to bring him there because my vet was on holidays. The cost of this treatment? $300. Instead, my vet educated me on the causes of Demodex, and had me add three herbal supplements to his diet, easily available at any natural health food store, which boost his immune system and completely stop the outbreaks from occurring at all. She didn't make a dime off of this treatment.

I'm sure there are some dishonest and unethical vets out there, like there are in every profession, but they are far from the norm. The vast majority care deeply about animals and their care, and just want to be able to make a living while they help take care of your pet's health. I hardly think that's too much to ask of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,534 Posts
Now for my own personal experience. I went to the vet a few days ago, for his yearly vaccinations, and just a routine check up. When I got there, I told them about a pimple-looking thing he had on his neck. It looks like nothing malignant, but looks like swelling he got from a cut, but the vet insisted that we check if it's a tumor that's malignant, so after persistently asking us to get it checked out, we shelled out 200 dollars to get it sent for testing. Now, I've seen tumors and other malignant types of swelling, but this was nothing. The funny apart about this was the fact that the vet wanted us to buy 55 dollars worth of antibiotics (keep in mind that the vet has no idea what this swelling is) to treat him.
So, how do you know it's not malignant? Many skin cancers have very little to nothing other than a discoloration to indicate what they are, in fact one of the most deadly looks like a large freckle that's a little scaly (Melanoma). I'd gladly spend a couple hundred dollars to be sure my dog was healthy if the vet suspected ANY type of lump.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,406 Posts
My vets are trusted friends. Do they always get it right? No, but I think they are always trying. And usually they do. Now hospitals on the other hand . . . what I might pay $1000 or so at the vet with a dog who has to stay a few days in intensive care would cost a human a luxury car in the hospital. Going over one of my bills, I got charged (or the insurance company did) $480 for "physical therapy" which consisted of someone walking behind me down the hall once (for about 5 minutes). I think it is a game they play with the insurance company which denies some of the more ridiculous charges (and which they expect). Since veterinarians study nearly as hard as doctors, and generally have more difficult and varied patients (who can't tell them what hurts or how bad) I think the majority of them do a bang-up job. As to not having extensive knowledge about animals - most of the answers are a google away on the internet, so that's a choice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
There are a lot of bad practices out there. vets and human practices. my hubby went to the dr once. needed a prescription change went through it all before signing in explaining what he needed. made him pay 170$ up front then the dr came in said sorry we cant help you and left.. I know a lot of vets that will space out the dogs vaccinations by a month so they can charge an office call for each visit. I also know vets who will tie you into a surgery with the basic fee's and then not include the meds and other fees in the quote. It is sad. but there are a lot of good doctors and vets out there as well. I strive to be 100% honest with our clients and it still comes down on us. there are always a handful of people who want to blame someone for their situation. and many times if a dog passes away they point fingers. it sucks on both ends.
One man once brought his dog in after never going to a vet in 10 years it was so matted and aweful condition you would be sickened. it had injured its leg and he decided to do xray sedation with no bloodwor risky at that age. while it slept i felt so bad for the dog i spent the entire time dematting it and grooming it for free. We sent home a pain killer once again risky but he did not want blood work and the dog was in a lot of pain. The dog did fine and 4 days later after doing super well, it fell over vomited up a fountain of blood and he rushed it in. I performed CPR on it for like 45 min until it didn't revive. The guy blamed us and tried to sue us. told everyone we killed his dog. I asked the guy if he had given the dog large amounts of Aspirin because it had symptoms to that. and his eyes got really wide and he snarled at me and stormed out of the clinic. He declined any autopsy even though we offered it for free. We were saved because the man had declined the bloodwork and stuff. That is why a vet usually suggests everything even though you may have said you wanted a certain service. such as " I only want the rabies shot" then you get a spew about well you should get this and this and this. its not always about selling you a services its more so covering our end if something does happen with your pet. after you "decline" its written in the file that you were informed and declined.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,215 Posts
So, how do you know it's not malignant? Many skin cancers have very little to nothing other than a discoloration to indicate what they are, in fact one of the most deadly looks like a large freckle that's a little scaly (Melanoma). I'd gladly spend a couple hundred dollars to be sure my dog was healthy if the vet suspected ANY type of lump.
This.... So you think it's not malignant therefore you don't want to get it tested. Thinking its not and it being not are two different things. If you even know what to look out for. The only way you can tell is by testing it. As Carla said, I too would much rather pay the money and it be nothing the not pay and pay even more for it later.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,406 Posts
Can't they technically diagnose your dog with some random kind of disease and make you pay absurds amount of money for you to get it treated? I know I'm being awfully cynical here, but after my experiences with some veterinarians (and these were qualified, accredited facilities) I don't think I can trust these places.
They can suggest treatments. They can't make you agree to them. There's always the option of a second opinion. I probably tend to request stuff that the vet may or may not have suggested. I'd rather err on the side of safety for my pets than try to cut corners on expenses. But that's just me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,186 Posts
You can tell something's malignant just by looking? That's impressive.

A coworker of mine was having horrible shoulder pain. Her doctor sent her for a CAT scan, which she totally blew off because why would you need a CAT scan for a shoulder injury? He's just trying to make money. Two months later, she was in a minor car accident and nearly died because her spleen ruptured. It turned out that the shoulder pain was referred pain from her enlarged spleen pressing against her diaphragm, something that would have been discovered in the CAT scan. That's what her doctor was trying to rule out with the CAT scan.

Are there bad doctors and vets out there? Absolutely. Is ordering an expensive test a sign of a bad doctor/vet. No, no it's not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,399 Posts
This is why you should seek out a vet you can trust and build a relationship with. Ask around about other peoples' vets, read reviews. Some vets might be in it for the money, but some are also in it to help the animals.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,193 Posts
Also, learn all that you can. Understand your options. Make informed decisions.

I had a boxer with a huge growth on her lower leg. A bone punch and cancer screening were going to run about $600. I was fine with that. However, I asked, "If it IS cancer, what then?" They said we would need to amputate the leg. She was 11. It was a FRONT leg. I would NEVER have amputated her front leg for reasons very specific to her, which included her age the the existence of other problems. So, I just removed the lump with no bone punch and no further testing.

No one was taking advantage of me. They were just presenting me with the options most likely to save her life. I was free to chose my path. If keeping her alive as long as possible had been the goal, their plan was much better than mine.

I think the vast majority of vets are good people doing good work. They just can' reasonably be expected to understand every relationship or situation. That's the owners job.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,931 Posts
Like any other profession, there are good and bad. I am sure some are out for the money but most are there for the animals. It sounds like you need to find the latter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
the vet that treated Izze was a very good man, she passed from a pulominary embolism on the morning of her surgery, literally on the operating table being prepped & she suddenly flat lined & they couldnt revive her. he was clearly devistated as was the staff who i could tell were very upset when i went to pick up Izze's ashes that following monday. they didnt even charge me for anything even though the orthorpedic surgeon had to make time to be there & she was basically being put under when it happened, they could have charged me for the ansthetic & the time the surgeon hadd to take out of his schedule not ot mention the time he had to drive there (he even came back a day earlier from his vay cay on monday for her surgery). instead of about a $3500 bill we got out of there with only a $1500 bill inclusing the ccost of the cremation... not that i was trying to save money... i was willing to shell out any amount to save that dog :(, but it was still good business of them not to 'nickle & dime' me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
111 Posts
Honestly, no, not really. Sure, it could happen, but I can't imagine any vet around here getting away with that for very long before their customers got wind of it and they had no business (or got hit with a bunch of law suits).

Sure, I've had some really, really high vet bills, sometimes higher than I expected. However, I've never felt that my vet was trying to nickle and dime me or forcing me into things I didn't want to do. In fact, my vet gave me a huge price-break on my new dog because he's literally a stray I took in off the street. She's saving me a few hundred dollars, just basically out of the goodness of her heart. I've had times when I wasn't happy with how much things cost, but it's always my right to ask for pricing up front, as well as refusing any treatment I think is unnecessary.

Becoming a veterinarian is hard - vet schools are more competitive even than regular medical schools. It's not something you do just to get rich. Everybody has to make a living, but most of the vets I've encountered became vets because they really, really love what they do. Medical care is expensive, and there's not always anything they can do about those prices - not if they want to keep their doors open.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,950 Posts
Honestly, no, not really. Sure, it could happen, but I can't imagine any vet around here getting away with that for very long before their customers got wind of it and they had no business (or got hit with a bunch of law suits).

Sure, I've had some really, really high vet bills, sometimes higher than I expected. However, I've never felt that my vet was trying to nickle and dime me or forcing me into things I didn't want to do. In fact, my vet gave me a huge price-break on my new dog because he's literally a stray I took in off the street. She's saving me a few hundred dollars, just basically out of the goodness of her heart. I've had times when I wasn't happy with how much things cost, but it's always my right to ask for pricing up front, as well as refusing any treatment I think is unnecessary.

Becoming a veterinarian is hard - vet schools are more competitive even than regular medical schools. It's not something you do just to get rich. Everybody has to make a living, but most of the vets I've encountered became vets because they really, really love what they do. Medical care is expensive, and there's not always anything they can do about those prices - not if they want to keep their doors open.
The man that I work for has been a vet for over 40 yrs and he just loves what he does. Everytime we have to put a animal to sleep he goes into his office to say a prayer over the animal. He also loses sleep at night when we lose a long time patient or something bad happens to them it really bothers him. Anyone who goes to school to be a vet usually goes there because they LOVE animals. not to say some people might not change over the years and greed can corrupt. but you do not spend years of your life to become a vet and not like animals.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,074 Posts
@fade Yeah, the vets (both the general practice vet & the orthropedic surgeon) who presided over Izze's care also was clearly distraught when they lost her, when they met with us after her passing evwen in my stricken state i sould see their hearts ached for me, she wasnt just a patient, they had high expectations for her that she would have come out of the surgery & would have had a pretty good recovery (orthropedic doc was pretty sure that the loss of Izze's motor function in her baack legs was due to her fractured pelvis pushing on the spinal nerve, but it wasnt severed or damaged, so he was confident he could fix it), to lose her so suddenly was heartbreaking for all involved :(
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Top