Subject: Banfield Pet Hospital
Content: 5-2-2008 Recently our dog Neeko who is a 4 year old boxer has started whimpering and yelping when he tried to lift himself onto the bed or the couch. My husband and I took him into Banfield Pet Clinic because that is where his health insurance is through. He been going here since he was 11 weeks for his vaccinations and checkups. When we took him in the receptionist asked why we were bringing him in today so we explained that he seems to be in pain when he tries to lift himself up on the bed or onto the couch. Neeko also is reluctant to even lay down and when he does he whimpers and yelps getting up which leaves us to believe something is painful in his upper body. They checked us into a room where a nurse came in to take vitals and a rectal temperature and again asked us why we were bringing Neeko in today. Again we went through the story of what was going on. She took notes and told us the doctor would be right with us. A few minutes later the doctor came in and asked us why we were bringing Neeko in today, so for the third time we again told our story of what Neeko has been doing. The doctor starts examining his head movement, shoulders, hips and spine which he said seems to be fine. He moved onto his abdomen which he said Neeko seemed to be guarding. He then asked us if Neeko had been vomiting and if he has recently defecated. We told him Neeko last defecated at 5:00AM and it was now 8:00AM and that no he was not and had not been vomiting. The doctor said he would like to run some tests to rule out Canine Pancreas-Specific Lipase (CPL). The symptoms I found out later to prompt this is vomiting which is something Neeko wasn't doing. He also wanted to get an x-ray of his abdomen to take a look at his intestines to make sure there wasn't a blockage. Every thing the doctor wanted to do we agreed to trusting he knows what he's doing since he's the vet and we are not. We questioned why he would look there instead of in his upper area where he seems to be having problems and again he said it's because Neeko was guarding his abdomen. We had to leave Neeko which we didn't want to do but for his sake we had no choice. By 12:15PM we finally got the phone call with his blood test results (CBC, CPL, Electrolytes,and the Urine test which all looked great. The last one which was the x-ray of his abdomen wasn't performed yet and he would let us know by 3:30PM how they looked. At 4:30PM we finally got a call saying that the abdomen x-ray looked abnormal and that he had some options for us and to come in and pick him up at 5:15PM. My husband and I were there at 4:45PM to wait since we were right next to Banfield waiting as close as we could for the call. When we were finally called back to talk to the doctor we were told that he sees' a blockage and showed us what he was talking about on the x-ray (there were five x-rays total). I am no doctor but to tell you the truth it looked like his colon had fecal matter in it. He told us to take Neeko home tonight with no medications, feed him chicken and rice and let him know the next morning if he defecated by 8:00AM the next morning when they opened. If he hadn't they would have to due a barium x-ray to trace where the blockage was or an ultrasound leading up to taking him in for surgery. We were devastated. The doctor sent us home at 5:42PM with Neeko and a copy of the x-rays on cd in case we had to go into an emergency vet. This visit was $366.50 with insurance our portion and took 9 hours and 42 minutes. My husband was up again with Neeko who was looking weaker and whimpering more and restless. 5-3-2008 By 5:00AM I had enough, my husband was exhausted physically and emotionally and so was Neeko and myself. I called St. Francis 24 hour pet hospital and told the vet tech what was going on and she immediately told us to bring him in so they could take a look at him along with the x-rays we had on disk. As we were walking in the vet tech asked us if Neeko has always limped and favored his right front arm which he hasn't. She checked us in and took his vitals and temp. She then moved on to feeling his abdomen which she said felt fine. She check his head and neck and said she felt the right gland was a little swollen and that she would show the doctor the Banfield statement we gave her listing the tests performed and look at the x-rays we had on disk. By this time Neeko had let out a whimper when he tried to lay on the cool floor on his side which re-affirmed that yes he's in pain and it is in his upper body. The doctor came in ten minutes if that later and started doing the head, neck, spine and hip exam like the other doctor did. The major difference? this doctor noticed first thing which even Chuck and I had not noticed that Neeko was not looking up which is what most dogs do to look at us which again re-affirms Neeko is in pain in his upper body possible his neck. The doctor then felt his abdomen which he said felt fine and seemed more concern with controlling the pain, x-raying his upper body where he was having problems and getting him on antibiotics for the swollen gland. After the x-rays and the medication to relax him so he could rest and get the x-rays they brought him out on a stretcher (he's 95 lbs) into a room where my husband was able to lay on the floor with him so he knew we were there. Neeko was only away from us for a total of 30-40 minutes. The end result this visit was 3 hours long and our portion with 5 injections five prescriptions through an emergency vet $432.00 with no insurance. They did more and they did the right thing for our baby. Banfield chased an issue that was not there and what's worse. . .I was right what the doctor said he seen as an obstruction was poop in his intestines because he went number two twice within a 30 minute window of leaving Banfield and peed three times which tells me they left him in the kennel and didn't take him out. I feel personally like we were scammed and our emotions were played on. They did not do what was in the best interest of our baby and did not listen to what we said to them from the minute we stepped up to check in with reception to the other two times we explained why we were there. I am canceling his Banfield health insurance and changing over to St. Francis where they listen, care and know what they are doing. They not only cared about the stress Neeko was going through they really cared about my husband and I and helping put our anxiety to rest. I have since been reading blogs about Banfield and this is something I wish I had done a long time ago and checked complaints. I am writing this to try and help the next person not make the same mistake we did and let the emotions over rule your best judgement and knowing your baby. I hope this helps someone so you don't have to go through what we did. Neeko is sleeping and so is Chuck and already Neeko is sleeping in his old position on his side next to dad where he is happiest.
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