Banfield Pet Hospital - Banfield uses neglegent vets that put your pet's safety and your wallet at risk
I took my kitten to Banfield for treatment when it was sick. It was clearly stated to the vet (Dr. Buchanan) that the problem with the kitten was that the day before he was experiencing lameness in his LEFT front leg. The morning that we took him to the vet he was experiencing lameness in his RIGHT leg. We made the vet very aware that he had received his first round of shots previously that week, and even asked her if the shots could have had any negative effect on the kitten's condition. She replied that shots don't have anything to do with his lameness. The vet seemed very confused and unable to diagnose the kitten at first. She left to consult with her coworkers. When she came back, she diagnosed the kitten with a likely case of FIP, a fatal disease, and recommended x-rays and tests to see if there was anything that they could do. Distraught about the potentially fatal diagnosis, my girlfriend and I decided that we had to do the tests and x-rays in order to attempt to do something to save the kitten's life. Banfield performed the x-rays and test and found nothing. They did report that the kitten was in extreme pain during the x-rays and needed to be sedated because he was hurting so badly. They said that anytime anyone would touch or move his legs, he would scream. When we picked the kitten up, I was getting the feeling that the vet did not know what she was doing and asked "Have you ever seen a cat with these symptoms before?" She replied that she had never seen a cat with this shifting lameness in its front legs before. We took the cat to another vet for a second opinion, and immediately upon seeing the cat, the second vet said that this shifting lameness in the cat's front legs is a common symptom of Feline Calicivirus, a common cat flu. The second (non-banfield) vet said that it is also extremely common for kittens to develop this limping/lameness right after their first shots! She went on to say that our kitten definitely did NOT have the FIP disease and looked nothing like a cat that has FIP. The cat was 100% better the next day (About 48 hours recovery time from initial onset of symptoms.) In addition, I also called another vet's office in Boulder and they confirmed that these symptoms are common in kittens after their first shots and are a result of Feline Calicivirus.
To further demonstrate Banfield's culpability, I have done some additional research to show that the Vets in their office made negligent and uneducated statements that led me to pay $593 due to their lack of experience and inability to make a simple and routine diagnosis given all the facts at hand. Please read the details of the common Feline Calicivirus and the associated limping syndrome at http://www.fabcats.org/owners/cat_flu/limping_syndrome.html
Here are some very relevant quotes pulled from the Feline Advisory Bureau report:
"¢ "A curious feature of the association between FCV infection and the limping syndrome' is that the lameness is most frequently observed in kittens, and often following their first vaccination."
"¢ "Workers at the University of Liverpool investigated the association between the syndrome and FCV vaccination in detail (Dawson and others 1993). They found that of 123 vaccine reactions reported to them, 80 per cent involved lameness (either alone or in combination with other signs such as pyrexia, oral ulceration or respiratory signs. Furthermore, of the cats developing lameness after vaccination, 96 per cent occurred in cats less than six months of age, and 88 per cent occurred after the first vaccination."
"¢ "From an early stage, transient lameness was also observed as a clinical feature in some cats infected with FCV and it now seems clear that this is, in fact, a common clinical manifestation of FCV infection."
"¢ "Clinical signs were reported to resolve within 48 to 72 hours with no residual effects. "
"¢ "The precise cause of the lameness was not determined, although the authors reported pain on manipulation of joints, and generalised hyperaesthesia (pain or hypersensitivity to touch). "
"¢ "From the studies performed, and the number of enquiries regularly received by the Feline Advisory Bureau, it is clear that the limping syndrome is a common manifestation of FCV infection. It occurs most commonly in young cats and its severity can vary from inapparent arthritis and mild limping, through to severe polyarthritis where the cats are reluctant to move, inappetent and seen to be in pain when touched. "
"¢ "Most cats affected with this syndrome will spontaneously recover without the need for any treatment."
As you can see, the report details what should be common knowledge to any professional veterinarian. The Banfield vet was supplied with all of the details necessary to make a proper diagnosis, or at the least, to take FVC into consideration and mention it to us. This did not happen. The fact that she did not even mention that FCV "COULD" be the cause of his lameness and that we "COULD" wait 24-48 hours to see if the kitten gets better is inexcusable and negligent. It would have been our choice at that point in time, and I guarantee you that I would have chosen that option, as the vet had no other treatable diagnosis for the cat. This negligence in addition to the vet's statement that she had never seen these symptoms before in a cat makes it apparent that the Banfield vet was lacking proper education, training, and experience that is necessary to do her job correctly. Her diagnosis and recommendation of x-rays and tests was not even remotely viable given the circumstances, and it is highly inappropriate for me to pay for unnecessary services that were part of a diagnosis from an unqualified and undereducated employee. This is no different than if I took my car in and they replaced the motor when it was really the transmission that was having issues. In both of these cases, the client can not be expected to pay for gross errors made by the service provider.
Product or Service Mentioned: Banfield Pet Hospital Pet Vaccination.
Monetary Loss: $593.