Breaking News from ABCABC News is reporting that some veterinarians are selling unneeded tests, procedures, and shots in an attempt to ramp up their income and profits. They are basing this report on information provided by Andrew Jones, a veterinarian who has written a book called “Veterinary Secrets: Revealed.”
Here’s the disclaimer, after practicing for 17 years, Jones had a dispute with the licensing board about advertising practices and left the profession.Jones reveals that the practice where he worked (in British Columbia) would routinely tell clients that their dogs had cancer because they knew the families would take extraordinary (and expensive) measures to treat the dog. He says they would not rule out the possibility of cancer without testing, even if their best medical judgment was that a tumor was benign.
To test Jones’ claims, ABC had two dogs checked out by a respected veterinarian. After they were told both dogs were healthy, they took them to several other clinics in New York and New Jersey.
Apparently, there were only two things that these clinics tried to convince them were needed: teeth cleaning and vaccinations. The teeth cleaning is especially troublesome because it involves anesthesia, which introduces a risk of harming the dog much worse than a little tartar would have.As far as shots, the American Animal Hospital Association states that many boosters need only be given every three years, rather than annually, yet many vets continue to recommend annual re-vaccinations.
The upshot of all of this? Although most veterinary clinics are ethical, make sure you ask your vet if a treatment is simply “recommended” or is absolutely necessary, and if you’re in doubt, get a second opinion.
Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!