Horrible Vet Experience, please keep Furball in your prayers!

  1. We would like to share our experience and let people know what happened to our baby. If anything I've learned from this experience is unless you really trust your veterinarian, always get a second opinion on your pet's illness. Hopefully we can help prevent people from bringing their pets to the Las Tunas Animal Hospital in California.

    In December last year, my mom noticed blood in Furball's urine. She took him to the Arcadia Small Animal Hospital and had his urine checked. There was a small amount of blood and in the urine test but the doctor there told us that Furball was not in a critical state and he should be fine. He did recommend an extra to check for bladder stones but Furball was still healthy and acting like his happy self, so she did not force him to do any extra tests. A couple weeks later, she noticed a large growth on his hind leg. She took Furball to the Las Tunas Animal Hospital on January 21st because the doctor there also did surgery, so she thought it would be quicker for him to check Furball as opposed to having to get a referral later on. This doctor, Dr. Peterson, gave Furball another urine test and blood test. The blood test came back with negative results, he had a liver problem and could not have surgery to remove growth. The mistake we made is that we trusted Dr. Peterson completely and in the emotional state that we were in, we were willing to do anything to make Furball better. He did not say that Furball had a bladder stone or UTI, even though there was blood in his urine and he had the symptoms. Instead, he urged surgery instead to remove the growth Furball had. He sent my mom and Furball home with two medications, and with instructions to return 2 weeks later for another blood test to see if Furball could have surgery. My mom followed Dr. Peterson's instructions and strictly gave Furball the medication for two weeks. The night before Furball was to see Dr. Peterson again for his second blood test, my mom found him lying on the floor in a pool of his own blood and urine. He was straining and stretching his body in pain. My mom became panicked and was afraid to move him, she did not want to bring him to the ER to cause him more pain. He made it through the night and my mom brought him to Dr. Peterson again the next morning for his 2 week blood test. Dr. Peterson did not say anything about Furball being in critical condition, he did not tell us what Furball had or what was wrong with him even though we described all the symptoms Furball was experiencing. He just gave Furball another blood test and sent my mom and Furball home. 4 hrs after that visit, Furball passed away in my mom's arms.

    Through this whole time, I was up in Davis for school. I was constantly by the phone for updates from my mom. That was the most painful moment in my life, was when I got the call that Furball had passed away. I am an only child and Furball was my companion for 13 yrs of my life and kept my mom company while I went away for college, she is a single mom. He had the most beautiful and happy personality, always cheerful and made me happy inside. It is very painful right now to be writing this post. After Furball died, I flew down to LA to be with my mom. The worst part of this Las Tunas Animal Hospital is after Furball’s death, we requested Furball’s medical records so that we might be able to bring them else where to figure out why he died. Any pet owner knows how painful it is to lose a loved one and how it is necessary to gain closure. As a student at UC Davis, I was formerly an Animal Science major and still have contacts with a few of my professors. I want to be able to bring his records to one of my professors and perhaps gain some closure as to why he died all of a sudden. The two technicians who work there, Sandy and Debbie, were unsympathetic to Furball’s death and refused to give us a copy of his medical records and will only give us a “summary” which we have yet to receive. Dr. Peterson saw Furball that DAY he died, he still could not tell us Furball’s condition and could not tell that Furball was near death. I question his veterinary skills. Now I question the medication he gave Furball, was that 2 weeks a waste? Why did he not do anything for a possible UTI/bladder stone, he is the veterinarian – he should be able to tell through the numerous tests he put Furball through. They stated that it is their hospital’s policy that no record can be released to the dog’s owners. I don’t understand why I can’t have a copy of Furball’s records, isn’t it legally my right as an owner? If they did nothing wrong then what is there to hide? My mom I have asked numerous times to speak to Dr. Peterson himself but he refuses to return any of our phone calls and nor talk to us about what happened to Furball. We are always told “he is in surgery”, “he is with a patient”, “he has left the office” every single time we call to speak with him. We even went in person to wait for him today, and he still refused to come out to talk to us. I would assume as a veterinarian, he should love animals and be sympathetic to his patients and their owners. We do not want to sue or get any money, but only to hear from him what happened. He will not even have the decency to talk to us over the phone and explain to us what might have happened, which is making Furball’s death very difficult for my family. It also makes us question what he has to hide. I went to the Arcadia Small Animal Hospital to request Furball’s records and the technician there made me a copy immediately and even told me “I’m sorry you have to go through this” referring to the difficulty we are going through in trying to get the records from Dr. Peterson’s office. If Dr. Peterson would just talk to us and tell us what happened to Furball and said I’m sorry I understand what you’re going through, we would have a better peace of mind and not be going through a lawyer to obtain Furball’s medical records. I do not recommend Dr. Peterson and this clinic at all, I really hope sharing our experience with Furball’s death will help someone in the future.

    Here is a picture for you all to see, our precious baby Furball RIP 1996-2008
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  2. balenciagalove1, first let me give you my condolences, I am soo sorry for the loss of furball. what an horrific story! there definately sounds like malpractice, that doctor is an unfeeling quack and I know you don't want to sue, but you would have every right to. You are right to tell everyone you know to stay away from that doctor. my thoughts and prayers go out to you and your mom.
     
  3. I'm sorry to hear what happened to Furball and what you and your mom are going through. :cry: I can't imagine ever losing my dog. Hope you guys get the the records soon and feel better! :crybaby:

    And about Dr. Peterson, it seems like he doesn't like animals and just became a vet to make money. The first vet I took my chi to was like that and I never went back to him again. It seems like what he did was malpractice and he just won't release the records because he's afraid of getting sued.
     
  4. {{{hugs}}} Some people don't understand why we pay so much or fuss so much over our puppies. We want the best medical care they can have beacuse they are living creatures who feel and suffer. I'm livid after reading this vet's idiotic way of handling your puppy. Last year I left mine at the kennel of the vet who we took them to then instead of the usual kennel we use who were our first vets (incredible staff, reasonably priced, and the vets love and care for the patients but 45 mins away, too far to be our regular vet still). It was a hell hole. i cried the entire weekend and worried. They gave me my kids back a sack of bones (after 4 days) and Leeloo was colitis and then enteritis (she was feverish, her wbc count skyrocketed, pooped black/bloody liquid that smelled of death). She was soooo sick for a week. We were sooooo mad. Needless to say they are not our vets anymore. We couldn't do anything about it because the new vet couldn't say it was 100% their fault. But I think you can do something about this. You need his records...have a lawyer call to get them if you have to. Call the veterinary board too...this doctor shouldn't be able to handle anymore animals if he's not capable.
     
  5. Oh, honey, I am so sorry about the loss of your beloved little dog Furball. My heart is just breaking for you.
    I do have a suggestion... contact a lawyer or legal advocate to get a copy of Furball's records... NOT a summary, but his complete records from puppyhood. (If Dr. Peterson has seen him since puppyhood.) Sometimes that's all it takes, a request on legal letterhead to get the records.

    The more I hear horror stories about certain vets, the more I am so happy with my vets. I do hope you get satisfaction in this case, there was no need for this to happen.
     
  6. :crybaby: OMG, I'm in tears reading about your horrible experience with Furball!!

    That is totally horrible how the vet treated/misdiagnosed him. You should definitely contact a lawyer to get his records- it is your right as the owner to have them. As Bravo as posted before, contact the veterinary board of CA too.

    May the fondest memories of Furball help you and your mom through this painful and difficult time. :::BIG CYBER HUGS::: :heart:
     
  7. weekender2: Thank you for your thoughts and prayers :heart:

    missyanne: We think Dr. Peterson has something to hide as well for not releasing Furball's records, he and his office is making our grieving so much worse for not doing so. Thank you for your thoughts :heart:

    bravorodrig: That kennel sounds awful! I am glad your babies became better though and nothing serious happened. I have already sent in several complaints to different associations and will be sending one into the CA veterinary licensing board. Hopefully someone will listen to me and do something with my complaint! Thanks for your suggestions :heart:

    Speedy: Yes, we kept telling them we DON'T want JUST a summary, we want all the RECORDS. I want to see what the Dr. actually wrote down during the visits. We've asked a friend who is a lawyer to make some calls for us next week, hopefully we will be able to get them! Thank you:heart:

    GUUCIhoochie: Thank you for your sympathy, it really was so hard for me to write down what happened. I feel that it is necessary though, I rarely talk about it in person b/c of how I might react. I hope Mickey is doing better! It just makes me really sad that if Furball really had a bladder stone, it was treatable - and he'd still be cuddling next to me right now... I know he still had at least a few yrs left, I saw him in early January and he was still fine. Thanks for listening :heart:

    I will keep you guys updated on what happens! I just really hope we can get those records
     
  8. I am so, so sorry to hear what happened to Furball. Your love for him is so evident--it's truly heartbreaking to read about what you went through.

    It's so difficult to lose our beloved pups--I understand completely. I have lost a few dear pups too. It's important to remember that the love we give to our pets is the most precious gift in the world--and it is what mattered to them above all else.

    Be kind to yourself at this difficult time, and allow yourself to be sad--and angry. I truly hope you can get some kind of closure--this is just so unfair and awful.

    (((HUGS!))) :heart:
     
  9. snowwhite: Thank you for your words :heart: I am more worried about my mom, she keeps obsessing over Furball's death and has so much anger against Dr. Peterson and those two technicians. I really hope we can get some closure soon. I just have to keep reminding myself and my mom that Furball really did live a GREAT life, we spoiled him as much as we could.
     
  10. I am so sorry for your loss. It's hard enough under ordinary circumstances, but the way this was handles makes it so much worse. You all are in my prayers.

    I'm not sure what your options are, but I might call someone with the state professional registration; try to check on what your rights are, and that might involve at least a small fee to an attorney. Good luck--they are stonewalling you and if they did nothing wrong, they wouldn't be acting this way. Terrible, just terrible.
     
  11. This is so horrible! I am so sorry for your loss, I know what it is to lose a beloved animal! I hope you can find out where this vet went wrong & sue the pants off him!
     
  12. boxermom:

    BagAngel:

    Thank you all for your supportive comments, they mean a lot. I've contacted an animal law lawyer, hopefully I will hear back from her soon. In the mean time one of my friends who is a lawyer is trying to look up if there is a law that says have the right to our pet's records. He said pets are considered as property, therefore we should have that right. He's out of the office though so he doesn't have the tools to research until Monday.

    Does anyone know if there is such a law? Their "hospital policy" becomes void if there is a law that says we have a right to our pets records. It just shows that they are doing this on purpose to give us more trouble!
     
  13. I would think that in the case of a suspicious death and upon request of the owner, they have to give you the records. Your best bet is to go ahead and contact your lawyer friend, and have him request them. Also contact the veterinary association as was suggested too, and see what they say.

    I keep check back to see how you are here, this is so unfair. It appears this vet didn't do anything medically to assist your mother with Furball's health, and the two technitions... GRRRR! I have no words for people like that! When we took Tip in this last week, ALL the gals at the clinic were stopping by to pet her and ask what happened and treated us with such respect and caring! I cannot wrap my head around two techs in the field of veterinary medicine who act like they just don't care about your pup's passing! THAT makes me so mad! When I found out Tippett had to stay and I started to cry, the techs were hugging me! AND they let us visit while she was there!

    Grrrr... I am upset for you! I do hope you can get the records and some answers as well. Furball didn't deserve this.

    This is one of the reasons I have female vets too... they just seem to be automatically compassionate during times like this.

    Keeping you and your mom in my prayers!
     
  14. I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you and your mom. Please know that you are in my thoughts.
     
  15. Speedy: Yes, we are having a lawyer contact them on Monday. We will see how they respond and if Dr. Peterson will even come out of hiding. I have e-mailed so many associations, anyone I can think of that might help us in this situation. Thank you for checking back, thankfully someone has contacted me from seeing this post - hopefully the information that they provide will help us too:heart: If anyone can help, please e-mail me aglee@ucdavis.edu Those two technicians are in the wrong occupation if they have no sympathy for what happened to Furball. They saw the way my mom babied him when she brought him in, they know he was very dear to our hearts; yet they still treated us awful after Furball died.

    I would like to share with you all something that I included in the e-mail to the person that contacted me - All my mom wants to hear is why her baby died, to see the medical records herself, and have another professional opinion so she can get some closure. These technicians will not let you talk, and will argue with you about every little thing. When we went in person yesterday to try to obtain the records, my mom asked the technician Debbie "Why couldn't Dr. Peterson tell that Furball was dying that day I brought him in?" She yelled at us with the answer, "It's the same thing like why can't I tell she is dying???" while pointing to my aunt who was there also. She shouldn't have said that. We have had several hostile phone calls with these people which have involved yelling back and forth, they will not let us talk and keep saying it is their "hospital's policy" to refuse to release records. That is how horrible they are. It is very suspicious that the DAY Furball finished the last pill of medication that was given to him, is the day he died. My mom told me that after he ate it, he immediately vomited. I don't even want to think about that, it breaks my heart.

    Glitz & Glamour: Thank you for thinking of us :heart:

    I will keep you all updated, thank you for listening!!!