Just over a month ago I accidentally closed my 7 year old tabby's tail in the bathroom door. It was 11:00 on a sunday night and after finally coaxing him out from under the bed I was able to see the extent of the damage. About 3 inches of the tip of his tail was exposed down to the bone. I loaded him into his carrier and took him to a 24 hour emergency vet where, I sat alone for over an hour covered in blood. They eventually told me that his tail was "degloved" and that it would need to be amputated at the tip because the skin and muscle would never grow back. The Emergency Vet wanted $500 for the procedure.
I refused because of the level of care I received I knew my cat wouldn't be treated well. I asked them to bandage him up for the night and give him antibiotics and pain medicine and I would bring him to Banfield first thing in the morning. I called Banfield when the doors opened Monday morning and told them that I had an emergency and needed to see a doctor right away. Apparently a cats tail being exposed to the bone and still excessively bleeding from the night before is NOT an emergency at Banfield. I was told that a doctor was not available and someone would call me back. An hour later I still had not received a return call. When I called back I was left on hold and finally talked to a pet nurse who said the surgery would cost "a little over a grand" and that the doctor couldn't do the surgery until Thursday! That is not acceptable treatment for someone who has had their cat enrolled with their facility for 5 years.
Needless to say I was furious, they expected me to let him sit around with the bone exposed on his tail for another FOUR DAYS, who knows what kind of dust, debris or bacteria he could pick up in 4 days. Let alone what kind of damage he could do to the nerves. I hung up with several choice words for the staff and promises of cancelling my membership. I then called an independent vet whose name I had gotten from a friend at work. His office got me in and did surgery the SAME day. We dropped him off at 3:30 and he was ready to be picked up at 6:30. The total cost of the surgery, anesthesia, pain meds, and follow up exam was $425.
When I called to cancel my plan with Banfield I was told it renewed in October 2009 and I would have to pay over $400 or wait until October 2010 and call and set the plan for non-renewal. In the meantime I would have to continue with my payments of $17.95 a month. They absolutely refused do cancel it without my paying out of pocket. I talked to two supervisors and got no where.
To anyone living in the Palm Harbor/Clearwater/Tarpon/New Port Richey area I HIGHLY recommend taking your pet to The Day and Evening Pet Clinic in Palm Harbor. The staff are very sweet, always the same girls not a revolving door of pet nurses. There is one doctor and he's very, very nice. They're not pushy about selling extra medicine or doing unnecessary tests. They're straight forward end extremely reasonable with their pricing. He touched my cats tail and said "Oh, yep, he broke it too". No x-rays, no nothing! He could just tell it was broken! Banfield wanted to do x-rays and blood work before seeing scheduling him for surgery. I absolutely love this new vet. I take my cat and my dog there now and my parents have also cancelled Banfield and started taking their two dogs and cat there. We'll never go back to Banfield again.