I lost a patient this past weekend. I don’t know why and I will likely never know, as the owners of the dog decided not to have a...
Non-Profit Veterinary Services of Denver
I have been overwhelmed by the response to my recent article, THE DIFFERENCE----it has been shared via Facebook more than 6,000 times around the world, including every US state, Canada, Mexico, Romania, New Zealand, England, Australia, Cuba, Egypt, South Africa, Indonesia and many others, and I have received numerous messages and friend requests in response to this. I have also received several requests to publish the article on websites and in newsletters, as well as messages from those who wish to print it out and give it to clients at their veterinary hospital. I knew the information was important for pet owners, but I had no idea how much support I would get for posting it and how many people also desperately wanted or needed to know this and share with clients and pet lovers everywhere. Truly, thank you for your support and your eagerness to share.
This article was born from an unfortunate incident where a higher-risk dog died on the day following a spay I did at a local, high/volume, low-cost, spay/neuter clinic. The owners of the dog were devastated and angry about their pet's death, placing all blame upon me for her demise, though no necropsy was every performed. As I state in the article, I understand when people are hurt and angry and seek to place blame when they don't have a direction for their feelings----it's a natural response. However, though I am a strong, veterinary professional, I am also just a human being, I have feelings too and I spent many long, difficult years in school (after giving up a previous career) to become a veterinarian so I could help people and animals----I care about your pets and only want the best for them and for you.
So, I spent three cathartic hours in the middle of the night after receiving the news and the accusatory email, writing to release my sadness, my frustration, my own questioning---- wondering what information the owners had or didn't have and what choices could have been made to have either reduced this dog's surgical, anesthetic and post-op risks and/or potentially prevent her death. In my helplessness and feelings of grief and subjugation, I needed to turn this into something positive for other pet lovers...and for myself. So I wrote.....