To Treat or Euthanize

Posted on July 2, 2013. Filed under: Philosophy | Tags: , , , |

The BoysThe thought of euthanizing an animal you have lived with and loved for many years is horrifying.  On the other hand, I recently heard of a story where a 13 year old dog was taken to the emergency vet facility in our area.  The dog had bloody stools and was in obvious distress.  $1000 later the test that was performed told nothing because the owner wasn’t informed that if the dog had eaten the test wouldn’t work.  He had fed the dog.  In spite of no evidence as to what was wrong with the dog, the vet wanted to keep the dog at the emergency hospital for 4 days and perform blood transfusions.  When the owner inquired as to the cost of this, he was rudely informed that it would be about $3000, and how could he even consider money as a factor in the welfare of his dog?!

This makes me so furious!  Does this vet honestly think $1000-4000 is no factor in this situation?!  The owner was trying to ascertain whether this investment was worth it.  The dog would suffer being separated from his home.  He would undergo possibly painful treatment.  He might even die apart from his owner.  In addition to all this, the vet didn’t really know what was wrong with the dog, and it was going to cost all this money!

The owner in this situation took the dog home, made him as comfortable as possible, and he died just a few days later in the owner’s arms.  Also, meanwhile, he had taken the dog to his usual vet who confirmed that there wasn’t much that could be done, especially with a dog this old.

I think it is reprehensible that this veterinarian tried to wield his power in this situation to manipulate a distraught owner to give up his dog’s last days and a pile of money.  Lesson learned.  Keep yourself alert for this in a stressful medical situation so you can guard your companion animal’s last time.  And if euthanasia makes the most sense, but some veterinarian is trying to make you feel guilty, stand firm on behalf of your animal.

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3 Responses to “To Treat or Euthanize”

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[…] I touched a nerve yesterday!  At least one veterinarian was not too pleased with my comments, calling them, […]

Good advice

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