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3 Bumps

How do you properly interview a prospective vet for your dogs? Poor Tuttle

I posted the ? about the puppy that I didn't know what he was - and for those who tried to answer - we've come up with a good idea - now that he's filling out we see definite Bulldog (possibly English) and definitely Chihuahua. LOL

Anyhow, the story goes that I found him in a pound nearly hypothermic and almost starved to death. He went straight to the vet from the pound - we didn't waste a minute with him and he's been to the vet once a week since we've had him (going on 4 weeks now) I mentioned in the other post about his back legs being horribly bowed and his hip bones sticking up.

I had brought this up to the vet 3 different times and pointed out that he whines (like he's in pain ) sometimes when he sleeps. Last week (on Friday) I took him back for his second set of shots - and I asked her again about his legs and hips - for the 4th time she dismissed it.

I also pointed out that he had developed this dandruff looking stuff - in spite of being on the best food I can find for him, a vitamin that SHE prescribed and the milk supplemental that SHE prescribed (we weened him off the milk last week - would have been his 8th week). She told me that it was normal in Chihuahua puppies for them to have the equivalent of 'cradle cap' - tho I'd never heard that.

But anyhow - I went out of town over the weekend and took him with me. On Monday he got up with his right front foot swollen and he was limping on it - I called her and she said 'sounds like an ant bite, give him benedryl". I did - Tuesday morning his left foot was swollen too. I called her again - she said that is normal for a puppy who got into ants - I had not seen him get into ants and I had been with him LITERALLY every minute since we arrived. But you never know -

I asked her if she would see him for an exam when we got back on Wednesday. She said she would .

All night Tuesday night he cried (seemed to be in pain) all night long. I managed a couple of hours sleep before I had to get up at 2AM to drive the 8 hours back. By daybreak I was bawling and worried to death.

He wouldn't move, and every time he looked at me you could see in his eyes that he was in tremendous pain. When 8AM came I called the vets office (from my cell while I was driving) and told them how bad he was. The tech talked to the vet and called me back with a message that the vet was leaving early and instructions for me to take him to the next town over as soon as I got back with him.

(SIDE NOTE: He had become so unsteady on Tuesday evening that when he went to go poop, both of his front feet buckled under and he fell on his face and stayed like that with his butt in the air while he pooped. Talk about freaked out. I was in tears. Also his poop was dark dark brown and slick looking - almost greasy. On the drive home, not only did his little eyes look terrible, his nose started running clear liquid all over and he just sat in is carrier with his nose against the seat - for 8 straight hours he didn't move except once when I stopped to see if he wanted to pee)

I got him to the other vet right before noon - they took blood, stool sample and did x-rays.

Turns out that he has Rickets (Yep - I said Rickets) and has multiple broken bones in his front feet and his left front ankle is broken.

AND that puppy dandruff is not puppy dandruff - it's a dormant fungus brought on by the lack of Vitamin D absorption in his body! ANDDDD The vitamin that the first vet had given me to put him on was not even supposed to be taken by puppies! I freaking bawled my eyes out.

Now poor baby Tuttle has both of his front legs casted and can't play. He's going to be okay eventually but it's gonna take time.

And lets just make things worse - that second vet told me that the food I had him on had corn gluten in it - and sold me a bag of Science Diet to feed him. I argued with him about that because I KNOW the food I had him on does NOT have gluten in it BUT Science Diet DOES along with by-products and other crap a sick puppy just don't need. WHAT THE %#$@ ??  (He's on Merrick Puppy Plate - literally has a 5 star nutritional rating - Science Diet doesn't even rate a 3. )

One vet was completely incompetent in properly testing, diagnosing and treating him BUT the other one just lied about the food (presumably so he could sell me a product).

How the hell do you get a GOOOOOODDDDD vet that you can trust - especially when you're entrusting these little lives to them. Makes me so mad I thought about going to school to become a vet myself.

How did you guys choose a vet and how did you know they're qualified AND capable??


Poor Tuttle has had such a rough life already - and I'm about ready to strangle a couple of veterinarians .

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 1:38 PM on Jun. 9, 2011 in Pets

Answers (6)
  • Poor puppy!

    Answer by mompam at 1:44 PM on Jun. 9, 2011

  • I forgot to add this point - Rickets in puppies is usually evident by mis-formed legs (horribly bowing legs) and thickened joints - BOTH of which Mr. Tuttle has has since we found him. The first vet never even checked his legs and hips just kinda went "huh, well maybe they'll straighten out". The fractures in his feet and ankle the second vet called "paranormal fracturing" ( meaning that nothing in particular caused them - and that presumably just him being a puppy and bouncing around fractured his little feet).

    I cried my eyes out - That baby had been trying to walk on 2 broken feet and I didn't even know it and a broken ankle. No wonder he looked at me so pitifully on the drive home.

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 2:34 PM on Jun. 9, 2011

  • word of mouth is the best way. if you have friends that have animals, see how they like thier vet. Or maybe (not sure if they have vet listings or not) Poor puppy... what an ordeal.

    Answer by nybor48 at 3:47 PM on Jun. 9, 2011

  • Do you have any dog rescue organizations in your area, particularly for any of the breeds your puppy might belong to? When I got my first dachshund through dachshund rescue we used the vet they used even though I had to drive out of my way. Not only will the vet have experience with the breed they will also have a proven track record closely watched by knowledgeable dog lovers. I'm sorry you had TWO bad experiences. Your poor little guy! At least his life has improved!!!

    Answer by jmpj8107 at 4:06 PM on Jun. 9, 2011

  • I agree with the other answers but I feel so bad for your puppy now. Just wanted to say I hope he will get much better quickly and you find a good vet soon.

    Answer by confused969 at 7:06 PM on Jun. 9, 2011

  • to be honest, I chose my vet based on how many animals he treated for the humane society. We occasionally have a puppy mill raid or a horrible abuse case featured in the news.... all those injured animals are treated by my vet. I figure if the humane society trusts him with the worst they come across, he is good enough for my animals. He's never steered me wrong or "dismissed" my concerns. Call your closest ASPCA or Humane Society and ask who their vet is.

    Answer by hollydaze1974 at 1:53 PM on Jun. 22, 2011

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