About a year ago, I switched vets. I had been going to the same vet office for over 20 years, so the decision to switch vets was a very hard one for me to make. I loved the vet and the staff that had been treating the animals, but for a year or so before I switched, the quality of the care had declined. Now I’m not one of those "once a year to get shots" kind of vet client. Goldie and Blacky were in there twice a year for blood work to make sure the arthritis meds they were on weren’t doing any damage to their livers or kidneys. I was in there every month or so buying arthritis meds, heartworm treatment, flea stuff, ear mite stuff whatever for the animals. It seemed like there were always new faces behind the desk or on the phone when I called. It took two weeks to get reports on the results of blood work. Even with a scheduled appointment, it wasn’t unusual to wait over an hour to see the doc.
The final straw was when I took Blacky in last spring for a "behavioral assessment" to determine if there was a medical reason behind Blacky’s anxiety about new things/people in his environment. It took him 30 days to get back to me. Now, don’t think I sat patiently by waiting for a call. I bugged the heck out of that vet’s office about the report to no avail. When I finally heard from the doc, he had a very condescending attitude about the diagnosis and what needed to be done for Blacky. He said that Blacky had a mild form of Doggie Alzheimer’s and wanted to put him on a very expensive medicine that had side effects way worse than the problem that we were trying to fix. I told Dr. C my concerns about the diagnosis (I didn’t think it was Doggie Alzheimer’s) and I was concerned about the side effects of the meds (I didn’t like the fact that it would dope Blacky up until he became a lump of fur). Dr. C said that if I wasn’t prepared to go through with the treatment plan he recommended then he couldn’t help me. After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I told Dr. C that I would discuss it with Hubby and we’d get back to him.
I told Hubby that I wanted a second opinion and I found a vet that’s 20 minutes away from where we live that specialized in geriatric dogs and took Blacky for a second opinion. Dr. G looked at the blood work that Dr. C had done, listened to me explain Blacky’s behavior, and did a medical exam on Blacky. Dr. G told me that she thought the problem might just be part of Blacky’s genes. He’s part Irish Setter and they sometimes act before they think. She recommended that we keep an eye on the situation, continue with the behavior modifications (give him an escape route and make a special effort to introduce new things to him), and see how he does. She didn’t see anything wrong with him medically and didn’t see the need to dope him up. If the problem continued or got worse, then we’d look at it again.
Wow, I really liked her and her way of treating me and Blacky. So I called the old vet’s office and told them to transfer the records to the new vet. And I told them why I was leaving. . . in great detail.
I really like the new vet office. There are several docs there so you don’t have to wait long if you have a walk-in appointment. If I have an appointment, I’m in and out without much of a delay. Blacky loves the vet techs and all the vets that he’s met while he’s there. Luci went there for all her puppy shots and that’s who did her spay surgery in March. Dr. G is the vet that helped me through Goldie’s last illness and her death. I’m comfortable letting these people take care of my babies.
Fast forward to last week. I got a handwritten note from the old vet saying that he had heard that we had left and asked me to come back. (I left about 10 months ago.) Dr. C said they had made some changes and he wanted me to see that things were better. Okay, I’m thinking that he didn’t get the message from whoever I talked to 10 months ago. I’m tempted to call Dr. C and tell him exactly why I left and why I’m not coming back.
Or should I just let him wonder what happened?