Vet: Sorry I didn’t get back to you on that blood test. How’s your dog?

Me: I buried my dog two weeks ago.

Vet: (long pause) Oh.

I’ve actually had that conversation. Word for word. It sort of stuck in my memory. And I’m not saying the vet was responsible for that particular dog’s death, in fact I don’t believe the dog could have been saved. I do think the trained professional I took him to could have been a lot more pro-active – or at least just admitted he was useless. Instead he gave me the impression something was being done, and I waited too long before trying anything myself.

I’m not even a very pet-intensive person, and I can think of three times a vet failed to save the life of an animal under my care. In the other two cases, either misinformation or general uselessness led directly to the death of the animal. In Fritz’s case above, as I said, I think the vet’s fecklessness wouldn’t have mattered in the long run.

I’m not saying veterinarians are bad people. Maybe your experiences have been far more positive. Mine indicate they’re not very useful people.

Oh, don’t get me wrong: If LB had a bone sticking out, I’d have been in a vet’s office yesterday if I had to illegally and hazardously drive him there myself. That’s a condition I’d expect any doctor to know how to handle. But in cases like this, where even the cause of the symptom isn’t known and can’t be learned very well, I know exactly what a vet would do: Prescribe a course of antibiotics and say “go with God.”

Well, I’ve got that covered already. I just needed info on the dosage, which (thanks to the daughter of a friend of the blog who has my phone number) I now have.

I’m off this minute to a large-animal vet in town to purchase amoxicillin. Whether or not it helps LB’s going to love this: He’s absolutely immune to pills – he can spit them out or vomit them up no matter how you inject them down his throat or wrap them in food. So pills must be ground up and hidden in canned dog food. Twice a day. For two weeks. Yeah. He’s gonna love that.

Sorry if this is poorly written or unintentionally offensive, I’m in a big hurry. Have to catch my ride to town or wait till Monday.

BTW, LB actually seems fine. He had that one spell, and I’ve watched carefully and it hasn’t happened since. So far. Still gonna doctor him, though. Also I’m changing his water.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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6 Responses to Vet: Sorry I didn’t get back to you on that blood test. How’s your dog?

  1. Matt in IL says:

    I used to run into similar symptoms quite often with my pup. Then I began washing his water bowl daily. He hasn’t had such an infection in the 7 years since.

  2. MJR says:

    Good luck Joel, I hope it works out well.

  3. Anonymous says:

    So glad he’s doing better. water change should help.

  4. Ruth says:

    A good vet is worth their weight in gold. An indifferent vet is as bad as a bad one.

    Good luck

  5. Works exactly the same with doctors, BTW. I’ve got a great one, but that’s because I pay for it (concierge style — not cheap, but less than my annual cable/internet bill). For those generally interested, I’d highly recommend Dr. William Davis’ book “UnDoctored”.


  6. leonard cook says:

    vets aren’t much use except in cases of trauma. I don’t trust or like them from experience.

To the stake with the heretic!