AVOID BANFIELD AT ALL COST. Their incompetence cost my dog his life.
Our story: My dog has been on the Banfield Wellness plan for over 10 years. Back in 2008, he had a problem with an obstruction in his digestive system that Banfield failed to diagnose. After spending hundreds of dollars at Banfield (South Shepherd, Houston, TX location), I took him to a different emergency vet and he was treated. I foolishly wrote this instance off as an anomaly. So this last week, when he started feeling ill, my boyfriend took him to Banfield. Despite our repeated insistence that he could have another obstruction in his digestive system, Banfield took x-rays and assured us that the x-rays showed no such obstruction. Banfield then sent us home with antibiotics, assuring us he had an "infection". Banfield scheduled a "cautionary" follow up appointment that their doctor said we "probably wouldn't need."
When I showed up for the follow up appointment (4 days later) with his condition obviously worsening, Banfield again took x-rays and again told us there was no obstruction. They admitted they were "unsure" why he was still sick or why his white blood cell count was so alarmingly high. At that point, Banfield's doctor suggested we could take him home and wait two more days for someone there qualified to do an ultrasound (at Banfield) or take him somewhere else to have it done. By then, we had lost all faith in Banfield and took him elsewhere immediately. The vet at the other emergency hospital didn't need an ultrasound--they didn't need any more information than what Banfield already had. They looked at Banfield's x-Rays, and within five minutes told us he had an obstruction and needed emergency surgery immediately. By the time they did the surgery, it had been four days since Banfield's doctors had originally seen him and the obstruction had wrapped itself around his intestines such that it was punctured in 12 places. He survived for three days after the surgery, but died on the fourth. We trusted Banfield to help us care for a dog who trusted us to take care of him, and Banfield betrayed that trust. Shame on them.
I have no issue with Banfield marketing itself as a hub for preventative care ONLY. However, they sell themselves as a full-service veterinary hospital, and that is misleading. So misleading it is criminal. They misdiagnosed my dog's issue, they were unable to keep my dog overnight, they lacked the staff with the expertise to properly read Xray imaging, and they didn't have the equipment or staff to do an ultrasound. Does that sound like a full-service veterinary hospital to you? And they lull you into thinking you will be saving money by using the Wellness Plans, but I promise you the nominal savings are not worth your pet's life. My foolish mistake will haunt me for a long time.
Please share this story. My research following this incident shows this is not a rare exception. No other animals deserve to suffer due to Banfield's poor standards of care.
Product or Service Mentioned: Banfield Pet Hospital Pet Medical Service.
Preferred solution: Not only do I want a full refund for not only the emergency "care" we received, but for my 10-year investment in the Wellness Plan. But more importantly, I want Banfield to change its branding that positions it as a full-service veterinary hospital. .