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Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

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  • #16
    Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

    WOW! I don't BELIEVE this!!! My vet just "fired" me!

    I called my vet on Monday and asked (the receptionist) if I could get Buddy's specific test names and his results. I had also talked to her on Friday about using a nebulizer for our other dog, Dolly, who has Mega Esophagus Disease. (Dogs with that disease often DIE from aspiration pneumonia, which Dolly is suffering from right now). She told me she would find out how I could get a canine mask for a nebulizer and let me know on Monday, or Tuesday at the latest. She asked me if I had enough antibiotics to get Dolly through the weekend and I said yes, but that she was almost out. She ran out Monday morning, so that was another reason I was calling.

    I told her from the beginning of Dolly's disease that I was on a support group for Mega E and also had found this one for Cushing's. When Dolly was first diagnosed, I printed out some of the information I found on that site, and showed it to her, such as the names of medications other vets were using on Mega E dogs and other things, (like the nebulizer) that others had found to be helpful. Except for treating the frequent infections that often happen with Mega E disease, she has not tried any of the other suggestions to help Dolly.

    Okay, now that you have a bit of the background, back to today:
    It's now Wednesday afternoon and she still hadn't called me back. Dolly is still out of antibiotics and her temperatire is 103.8 and she's shivering uncontrollably.

    So I called my vet's receptionist and politely asked again. The receptionist said, "Oh, we mailed you some information yesterday." I hadn't checked the mail yet, so I thanked her very much and asked her if I could get more antibiotics for Dolly's fever. she said she'd ask the vet and call me back. So I went out to the maibox to get Buddy's information that they supposedly sent and I found this letter:


    I think you are extremely fortunate to have time to spend in internet chat rooms all day. Unfortunately I do not. My days are filled with providing the highest quality care for hundreds of patients, all of which I am equally dedicated to, and although a great deal of information available on the internet may be accurate, much more of it is no more than idle dribble. I am confident that the care you have received from this practice has been exceptional, all the while respectfully working hard to remain within your financial constraints.*

    I have no idea how other veterinarians respond to clients doing their own internet research. I for one feel extremely insulted every time my research is reviewed and critiqued by on-line, uneducated laypersons, who have absolutely no idea the amount of time and diligence involved with the on-going educational process required to achieve the level of excellence in patient care that veterinarians strive for.

    At this time, I feel that perhaps you should consult with your colleagues in the support group regarding another appropriate veterinary care facility to meet your needs. Please let us know where we may forward your records, and to which pharmacy we may forward Dolly's prescriptions.

    (her name)

    *(I just paid her over $750 for two check-ups, Bloodwork on Dolly, Buddy's Low Dex test, and antibiotics for Dolly).

    I'm just in shock! I am a very polite, un-demanding, cooperative person. I feel like I've just been kicked in the stomach! Any feedback, please???

    Karen, Buddy & Dolly


    • #17
      Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

      I'm gonna read the rest of your thread now...


      • #18
        Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

        That is truly shocking! However, after I talk to my vet tomorrow, she may fire me.I just printed out maintenance protocol on lysodren from Dr. Feldman about dividing doses, and when I show this to her, it may be the end of us too. These vets are so insecure if they are not interested in hearing the opinions of others. It seems like it's usually the younger ones who get so upset. I have run into this with my daughter's many doctors. I hope you have several other options where you live. It shouldn't be hard to find a better vet, that's for sure. Anyway good luck and don't take it personally. Sharon


        • #19
          Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

          Originally posted by Kakesie View Post
          She consulted with vets in Kansas City who said life expectancy once diagnosed is 2-3 years with treatment OR without treatment. She explained that the problems with trying to reduce the cortisol production with lysodren or trilostane is that it needs to be closely monitored and can easily go too far, pushing the dog into Addison's. Her mentor in Kansas City said if they keep yo-yoing, they sometimes purposely destroy the pituitary gland putting them permanently into Addison's and then treat them with steroids.
          OMG – with the kind of information she has given you and the letter she wrote you…Good Riddance!

          Originally posted by Kakesie View Post
          Vets are wonderful, but owners of a dog with a disease have the passion and drive to do the research on that one disease and try every option and come up with creative solutions, that Vets who have to know about a lot of different diseases simply don't have the time to do.
          Completely agree with you – I, too, do not expect any vet to be an expert on everything – It’s too bad that you have this understanding, but your vet just sees what you’re doing as offensive. I feel lucky with my GP vet – she immediately sent me to an IMS vet, but I still work with the GP vet for the regular testing. She does not claim or act like she’s an expert in everything that ails my pup – she is upfront with me if she is not familiar with something and is open to learning or trying new things (as long as she doesn’t see anything inherently wrong with it).

          If there isn't a Cushing's expert near you, maybe you can at least find a vet who is open to learning new things...and one that truly does research instead of consulting with one particular vet that she assumes is knowledgable and updated on the testing, treatment & monitoring of Cushing's...and one that puts their patients above their own ego!

          I hope someone here can give you a referral.

          Did you at least get copies of all the test results...THAT YOU PAID FOR?

          Last edited by Wylie's Mom; 04-29-2009, 02:47 PM. Reason: additional venting


          • #20
            Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

            I am shocked at your letter and my first response is to write something nasty back but I don't know your situation and what other vet services are available. There is no way a vet who sees hundreds of dogs can know your dog as intimately as you. If you have to mend fences with her then you have to try to get her to understand that you are not "checking up" on her just trying to learn and understand this disease so that you can be part of the treatment. The suggestions given here are just that-suggestions. We all have been through so many different things with this disease that it is so nice to know you are not alone and that any strange problem you see usually has appeared before in someones dog and they can offer those suggestions on what to do.


            • #21
              Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

              Oh Karen!

              Honey, this is wrong on so many levels! They didn't even have the decency or courage to tell you in person. The receptionist had to know what was going on the whole time and just led you along! Meanwhile, Dolly suffers needlessly at the hands of one who's "...days are filled with providing the highest quality care for hundreds of patients, all of which I am equally dedicated to...". Leaving Dolly in that shape is "dedication"?

              Is she really that insecure? Dr C always cautions me about what I read on the web, but as time has gone by and she sees that I am learning correct info based on studies and hands-on experience, she is less concerned. I guess I just don't understand how educating yourself in order to better help Buddy should be offensive to your vet. But she really is offended, that letter drips with sarcasm, which isn't very professional in itself.

              I am so sorry you had to experience something like this when you are simply doing your best to help Buddy. And I certainly hope you have some more choices for vets where you are!

              You didn't deserve this at all, Karen, so let it get to you.
              Leslie and the girls
              "May you know that absence is full of tender presence
              and that nothing is ever lost or forgotten." Anne, a Corgi mom


              • #22
                Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                Karen, I AM STUNNED, SPEECHLESS, & HORRIFIED! The only thing I can say is you need to find another vet ASAP, I would not let this woman touch any of my pets ever, again.

                My GP vet know me very well & knows that I research my boy's medical problems to the moon & back. I don't hesitate to ask questions, bring up my concerns, ask for explanation, or offer information that I have found on He has NEVER, EVER acted angry, upset, or anything else by my actions, & if he did, I would be finding another vet.



                • #23
                  Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                  Unbelievable ... just unbelievable!

                  And I second everything that the others have said in reply to your Vet firing you. What an uncaring and insecure person she must be, to do this and to leave you without a vet at a time like this! You're probably better off without her though.

                  I hope you can find another vet in your area quickly, and one who will agree that it's a good thing to be a member of the team when it comes to caring for your own pets. We are the Vet's eyes and ears at home and our input should be taken into consideration, especially when we are bringing them valid ideas that we can back up with references from the veterinary literature which is certainly not "drivel".

                  My Internal Medicine Specialist actually loves that I am online searching and learning all the time. She has never been intimidated in the least by my choice to become a well informed advocate for my pet. As a matter of fact, I have had occasion to work with several boarded Specialists over the past few years ... in Veterinary Internal Medicine, Veterinary Dentistry, Orthopedic Surgery and also a certified veterinary physiotherapist ... all of whom were absolutely delighted to find that I had "done my homework" online. My current GP Vet also is fine with the fact that I like to be well informed. She's not at all insulted or intimidated and says that it actually keeps her on her toes!

                  My Internal Med Specialist tells me that I know as much or more about treating canine cushing's than most GP Vets with whom she has worked and she says that she wishes that all of her clients would make the effort to become well informed, so that she and the clients can communicate more effectively with each other and work better together to get the dog well again.

                  Last edited by acushdogsmom; 04-29-2009, 03:37 PM.


                  • #24
                    Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                    Hi Karen,

                    I'm very sorry that you experienced this and I sincerely hope that you have better options for veterinary care so you can move on from this situation and work with a veterinarian who regards you as an important member of the treatment team.

                    All of our vets and human docs have to accept up front that I will research everything they tell me on the internet - everything.

                    (I recently started working with a new doctor for myself and that's the first thing I told him. He agreed that gaining as much knowledge as possible was a good thing and encouraged me to research anything we discuss so he passed the first test!)

                    And that I will ask a lot of questions and require detailed explanations of what we are doing and why we are doing it. Those are standing conditions for me to entrust the health of any creature in this household to a doctor's care.

                    I am thankful now to have found veterinarians and doctors who treat me as part of the process, not someone to dictate to.

                    Because treating me as an important member of the treatment team is also a condition.

                    You are not being unreasonable or demanding. You are being a responsible caring caretaker for your dog and I think many many veterinarians would be thrilled to have a client who invests so much time and energy in their dog's care.

                    I am fortunate that I live in an area with many many vets to choose from and even then it took me a while to find a vet I am completely happy with. There really does need to be a fit of goals, styles, approaches... our diabetic dog's first vet is a kind, caring, compassionate human being who I greatly respect and who saved his life when Chris was a puppy. But our approaches to diabetes did not match and we found it necessary to find someone who suited us better...

                    Clearly that's what you need now!

                    So again, my sympathies and I truly hope you have some options.



                    • #25
                      Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                      These doctors need to realize that all we are concentrating on is cushings. They have a thousand more subjects to worry about and they should be greatful for our research! I have had the same kind of problem with my daughter, who has thyroid disease that started when she was 11. I had to research, diagnose, demand blood tests and demand treatment from doctors who know very little about the disease. She's now 19, and I am still fighting for her treatment. Bless the computer!


                      • #26
                        Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                        Just looked at your photos... Buddy is so very handsome and sweet...


                        • #27
                          Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy


                          I had to calm myself down after reading that letter. I am sooooooooo sorry that this insensitive person that calls herself a vet had the audacity to mail you that letter. I would feel compelled to send it to the newspaper - bet they'd love that story. I nominate her for the cushings Wall of SHAME. That takes the cake.

                          I am no vet and I am no psychologist but I can tell you that you know more about cushings than she does AND she has some serious issues. She obviously is not compassionate and will not make it as a vet. So you are fortunate to have discovered this before she tried poisoning Buddy without even trying to research protocol on the drugs she prescribes.

                          Meanwhile to help your dog.... You had discussed finding a new vet already anyway so its just a matter of speeding that up a bit. I made some recommendations in earlier posts, not sure if you've tried them but I'd go there first. There have to be more vets in Kearney than in Columbus so you will find a good one. If you want me to I could contact my vet and see if he recommends anyone.

                          Give Jesse a big hug for me and don't let that letter get you down. She obviously missed class the day at vet school where they talked about customer service! Hugs Kim


                          • #28
                            Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                            Unbelievable, I am stuned, all day in chat rooms? I am horrified and I would be sure to pass the word around that she is not easy to work with, in fact you cant work "with " her at all she does and you listen. Unfortunately there are some vets like that out there like that. I spoke to my net earlyon with the advice of this uninformed chat room, and told him that If I ask questions it is because I need to understand the why work in the hospital and have learned to never be lead blindly. He said he was the same way and we have to work together as we both have the same goal to keep Nike healthy. He attributes nikes doing so well to my education ( idle dribble) from here, he has not had any dogs do as well as Nike has with her Cushings and she is old. and it is from all the information and assistance and guidance I have recieved from here.
                            I am so sorry that your poor dog has to suffer the consequences of vet such as this and she calls herself a professional, with that kind of letter she wrote, sounds like a schoolgirl type thing not that professional to me.
                            Wish I could help spread the word not to use this uncaring selfcentered Its all about me vet but I am glad I am to far away to do any good.

                            Good luck finding a new vet
                            Hugs to you and yours from me and mine
                            Last edited by ventilate; 04-29-2009, 04:48 PM.


                            • #29
                              Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy

                              Originally posted by Kakesie View Post
                              She consulted with vets in Kansas City who said life expectancy once diagnosed is 2-3 years with treatment OR without treatment.
                              That 2-3 year prognosis statistic is only an "average" and we must remember what data that average is based on.

                              The statistic includes some dogs who lived only a few months after diagnosis as well as dogs who lived many years after diagnosis.

                              The data from which that 2 or 3-year prognosis statistic was formulated includes:

                              ... some dogs who were not treated at all for the Cushing's Disease

                              ... some dogs who may have been diagnosed and treated by inexperienced Vets or Vets who were perhaps too conservative in their treatment of the dogs and never really got the dogs' Cushing's well-controlled.

                              ... some owners who quit treatment at the first sign that the dog didn't feel well (when it may have been only a dose adjustment that was needed to get the dog feeling well again and to maintain good control of cortisol production)

                              ... some owners who were not observant or not diligent about giving the prescribed medication and/or were not having the dog monitored as recommended with periodic ACTH stim testing to check cortisol production and to know for certain if or when dose adjustments might be needed etc.

                              ... some dogs who were diagnosed only by the time the Cushing's was quite advanced and by then some irreversible organ damage (liver, kidneys, heart etc) may have already occurred

                              When you take scenarios like the above-mentioned ones and add that data all together with the available data on the Cushing's dogs who are successfully treated and have successful outcomes, many of whom live 5, 6, 7 years or more after diagnosis with an excellent quality of life, well, you may actually get an average 2-year prognosis, but that does not mean that a dog who is correctly diagnosed and treated for Cushing's will only live 2 or 3 more years from the time of diagnosis.

                              Also, most Cushing's dogs are already quite "senior" by the time they are diagnosed, and many would not have lived much longer than 2 or 3 more years even if they did not have Cushing's or any other health issues.

                              My dog was treated with Lysodren for more than 6 years after he was diagnosed with Cushing's and he led a happy and healthy life for all that time.


                              • #30
                                Re: Newly diagnosed, our beloved Buddy


                                I have not posted to you previously.

                                I feel like you, kicked in the stomach.

                                I would after finding another Dr. submit this bit of trashing to the BBB, the state licensing board and the local news media.

                                This Dr. may have some competence as an DVM, but if what you have related is anything close to what actually occured in my 'internet chatroom opinion', she needs to be seeing another type of medical professional.