insensitive vet

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.

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Henry- (1996-2010)

Go away, I'm- sleeping.
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 5:10pm PST 
So my Henry has been making a lot of noise when he breathes, especially when he sleeps. It's been going on for about a week, so I took him to the vet this weekend. I tried a Banfield in the new Petsmart by my new apartment (was sick driving to the old one 15 miles away).

The vet listened to his chest and told me it was clear, cleaned out his nose, and concluded it was allergies. He said if it doesn't get better once allergy season has passed, to bring him back. He also told me Henry's biggest issue is that he's "old and fat" (he's 14 and has always been a big boy)and not to expect him to be in perfect health. He also talked about the fact that maybe Henry needs to loose a few pounds because I do, like I'm giving him high calorie scraps off my plate. eek I told him his diet, told him my other cats are in great health (and skinny), and he shrugged it off telling me maybe I'm not the best to determine how much a cat should eat.

Can a vet say these things? I was in total shock and couldn't leave fast enough, but now I'm wondering if I should complain. I know Henry (and I) need to lose a few pounds--Henry because he never moves (me because of medications and previous injury)--but can a vet not treat him fully, blame his health issues on being "old and fat", and to say he's fat because I am? Whoa!!

I guess I'm just venting, and still in shock, but has anyone encountered anything like this before? shock


Princess Forever
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 5:23pm PST 
Sorry that you had to experience that insensitive vet. I use an only cat hospital so I will not go to Banfield. Check around for a better vet. I would not accept his answer either. You did well in getting care but now, you need to go and find a nice vet who will really examine your cat. It is all right to vent. You didn't use his name or her name. I saw my vet's name mentioned on the list of vets who will take care of cats who have critical issues. I am glad now that we go to her. It is stressful to go to the vet; you didn't need this kind of treatment......Let us know if you find a kind person.....Bamcat


Education is the- Key
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 5:23pm PST 
That is very insensitive, and just plain Rude!!! Definately go to another vet, and I would go in there and tell him how you felt, and that you will be letting others know how rude this vet is.
Awww....Henry you are Shadow's Twin I swear, you is beautiful the way you are, Shadow is still on her goal of loosing weight she was 20lbs now she is 14lbs, I feed her all grain free wet food.way to go


My name is not- Kittyfloss!
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 6:22pm PST 
That is a ridiculous way to treat a client! This vet is completely unprofessional and likely incompetent. If he really felt that Harry was overweight he should have found a diplomatic way to bring the topic up w/o making personal comments. If he felt that you don't understand cat nutrition, then he should have tried to educate you. Grrr! Sorry that you had to go through such an annoying experience. I like our vet, but I've run into idiotic human doctors, so I know how you feel! See if you can find another vet, one not working for something like Banfield.

All the best and I hope Harry is ok,
Shade's mom

Cleopatra- 8/4/96-7/18/- 13

Cleopatra~Queen- of de Nile
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 6:56pm PST 
Yes! You have every right to complain! That is CRAZY, not to mention rude and unprofessional. I would definitely find a better vet as well. That can be so hard to do sometimes, and is something that we have to do here as well since we moved to a new area. BLECH.... Our old vet recommended using a vet certified by AAHA as they have very strict standards that have to be met before becoming approved. Good luck smile. So sorry you have been treated so badly.


Meoki Rules!
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 9:12pm PST 
I agree, you should complain. Even if he felt that weight was an issue for your cat, he should have found a way to share that with you that, at the very least, was not personal (HE"S A VET, not a PHYSICIAN) and, if not sensitive, at least in a well-mannered way. Your vet just had an epic fail. I am sorry you experienced that. It's no one's business at a vet how much you weigh! And, this vet sounds horrible! I'd complain directly to the petsmart and then to Banfield, and maybe write a few internet interviews.

Delyte, Dark- Angel, at- Bridge

Me and my- person, together- against all
Purred: Mon Apr 26, '10 9:36pm PST 
This is Delyte. I am very skinny but my person is quite large and walks slowly with a cane. She gets this kind of treatment all the time from different human drs, but fortunately not from the vet. Although the vet did tell her that she should get rid of all of us kitties because she can no longer chase us down to give us medication or, in the case of the Grays, even catch them to take them into the vet. But we can see that the vet is primarily concerned about getting money from us--she wants us to feed special prescription food only available from the vet and not very good, and she wants us to have lots of shots and vet visits that are really not necessary.

In the case of this vet you went to, I would complain to the head of that firm, the store it was operating in and anybody else you can think of. And maybe go back to the other vet. It is allergy season and I have the same symptoms, but it is possible that something else is going on. Plus there are antihistamines for cats that might make him feel better. Big message to vets and human doctors--it actually is possible for a fat person or a fat cat to have (SHOCK) something wrong with them that is not caused by their weight! shock Use your diagnostic skills and not the prejudiced part of your brain and do your job!! I guess I was lucky when I got sick that our vet likes to do lots of tests, because I was really large when I got sick--but it was because the tumor was so big and the fluid was collecting around it. A vet like this bozo might have just put me on a diet and I would be dead.

Giant purrs and hope he feels better!


Has been COTD!
Purred: Tue Apr 27, '10 12:54am PST 
By all means find a different vet. In the past year, I've had three cats with breathing problems--one because of an upper respiratory infection, one because of an enlarged heart, and one because of fluid in the lungs--the first cat healed nicely, the other two are kittens facing imminent death. How could your vet determine it was allergies just by listening to the chest? And allergies to what? How are you supposed to deal with allergies if you don't know which allergens are causing them? How can he be so sure that something major isn't wrong without doing more tests?

There is no question that the vet had no need to bring up your weight. However (and I'm not trying to play the Devil's Advocate here), recently on Catster there was an article quoting research that seems to point out that fat cats often (obviously not always) have overweight owners. Maybe he read this article? (By the way, I'm a big girl myself, so I'm not pointing fingers at anyone!)

I rotate among three vets. One of them is extremely kind but has, in the past, occasionally said a rude thing or two to me. I stayed away from him for a long time, but when I went back in an emergency, he was as nice as pie. He must have been having a bad day when we quarreled. The vet a block away I only went to once--I think he may be a psychopath. He managed to insult me, my cat, and the other vet, all in a ten-minute session. If a vet is rude the first time you see him/her, forget it.

Here's hoping you find someone you can trust and LIKE!


Has been COTD!
Purred: Tue Apr 27, '10 4:14am PST 
Now that I think of it, the "research" linking obesity in humans and pets may consisted solely in interviews of vets. Either this an actual problem, or vets are judging animals on the basis of their impression of the owner, or vice versa. Or maybe both. Or neither...

Louis- Armstrong - ILM

I'm walkin' to- New Orleans.....
Purred: Tue Apr 27, '10 6:02am PST 
We are horrifed at the comment the vet made about your (the human's) weight. And we agree, how can he determine the cat is allergic by just listening to his chest.

I am also somewhat handicapped due to arthritis in my right knee (left one has been replaced) and arthritis pretty much throughout my body. And I also cannot do much in the way of physical exercise. That however, has NOTHING to do with what my cat weights. We visited Henry's page, and he could be my long lost brothers (MOL...). He is NOT bad, he is just a big, handsome hunk of black tomcat (like I am).

Sorry you had to go through this, if your current vet is too far, ask around. I am have seen a section here on CATSTER where people make reccomendations about vets. Or, you could start a Forum topic "Any Suggestions for a good Cat Vet in the (City) (State) area. Other clients are the best source of finding a great vet. Good luck, and hope your furry baby gets the treatment he needs.

Louis Armstrong and The New Orleans Kitties

Edited by author Tue Apr 27, '10 6:04am PST


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