Some funsies from this weekend:
A woman who looked suspiciously like she did either crack or meth (or both) presented her very sweet, old Chihuahua for a "bleeding face." Said Chi had not been to a vet in 4+ years, was not on heartworm preventative, and had received no vaccines. The "bleeding face" was a tooth root abscess. When the base of teeth become infected - that abscess needs somewhere to expand. Sometimes it expands right through the skin of the upper or lower jaw (more frequently upper). That's what had happened to this poor dog. I sent my technician in with an estimate to sedate the dog and do an oral exam. I also was careful to make sure he explained to her that the estimate did not cover ANY treatment and that would be additional. Silly me, not putting it in writing!
I extracted 8 of the dog's remaining 10 teeth, as they were literally falling out of the dog's head. All told - the bill was $70 more than the original quote. The owner absolutely REFUSED to pay the difference, as it wasn't quoted to her.
She even went so far as to bring her skanky boyfriend in to argue with my technician. Despite explaining to her that the dental I did cost $70 extra, whereas at a day practice, it would have cost hundreds of dollars (and RIGHTFULLY so) - she would not pay.
In the end, we were stiffed the $70. On the bright side, the little dog will feel much, much better now that the rotting teeth are gone. There was that to make me feel better about the whole stupid situation.
The next was a crazy breeder and her intact 10 year old Irish setter. This dog was not vaccinated. When asked why not, the woman replied, "I'm a breeder. I don't vaccinate." Anyway - she had brought the dog in for restlessness and panting/anxiety. She was convinced the dog had a GDV ("bloat"). It was obvious from 50 yards that the dog was not bloated, and I told the owner that. On abdominal palpation, she was severely constipated, however. I recommended xrays.
At that point, the owner told me that she wanted the "upside down" xray, not the "side to side" xray - as the upside down is the only way to diagnose bloat (according to her veterinarian - which I'm highly skeptical about). I explained how to diagnose a bloat - physical exam followed by a lateral xray ("side to side") if necessary.
It didn't matter - we did both views anyway, as we always do - lateral and VD. No bloat, just a colon full of rock hard stool.
Owner went home with dog only to call back at 3am, insisting we MISSED a bloat in her dog because we didn't do the "upside down" xray.
I'm sorry, Ms Wacky Breeder - where did YOU go to medical school?? I'm an ER doctor, for God's sake. I see a bloat a week. I know how to diagnose them! Hell, my last one didn't even need xrays, we just went to friggin' surgery. And guess what? I was right - the dog was bloated.
There were other colorful characters through the weekend...but those 2 took the cake.
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