Home diagnosis: always a train wreck for veterinarians - DVM
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Home diagnosis: always a train wreck for veterinarians
Watch out for clients who think they know better than you.


DVM360 MAGAZINE


How was this pooch still conscious?

Mrs. Downer was one of those people who fail to heed my advice then are quick to blame me for the results of their own stupidity. I set her straight and after a stern lecture from me, the bowwow recovered uneventfully.

My usual preferred order of events is as follows: I diagnose. I prescribe. Client cooperates. I hate it when the order is mangled, as it was in another case.

"Hello, Doctor. This is Mrs. Rage. Hemo cut his foot and needs stitches right now. It's really bleeding. Can I bring him over for stitches? I know he needs them."

I told her to bring him in so I could take a look.

"I don't want to waste a trip if all you're going to do is look at it or bandage it. I have to know that you'll stitch it right away."

I politely informed Mrs. Rage about who makes the surgical decisions and told her to come over. You guessed it. It turned out to be just a broken toenail.

Unfortunately, once our clients arrive at a home diagnosis, they are prepared to defend their judgment no matter how idiotic. Take, for example, Mrs. Blueprint.

"Doctor, Mimik is the best dog ever. I hope you can save him. He's been limping for two days. I'm afraid that we could lose him."

Just a little lame? Why the panic?

"Do you think you can fix my poor dog before all his hair falls out?"

My curiosity was aroused at that point. Lameness leading to alopecia? Since when? I asked Mrs. Blueprint for an explanation.

"My neighbor's pet had this exact same thing. It all started with a limp. After that got better, he seemed OK. Then a few weeks later he died. The thing is, Doctor, before Polly died, all his feathers fell out."


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Source: DVM360 MAGAZINE,
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