This year has been heart breaking, we lost 3 of our beloved furkids to old age and illness.
Tootsie Roll Pop, my sweet Calico, was the gentlest soul, she didn’t go outside, but chose to stay inside with me. My self-appointed shadow, she would follow me from room to room as I moved through the house. Since I work from home, I move from my office to the laundry room to put in a load of laundry, then stop in the kitchen to freshen my coffee, then back to my desk.
Without fail, every time I moved to another room, she’d up and follow me, without my urging her to do so. She’d always be sitting patiently by the door, watching me and waiting for me.
She was a tiny girl, only weighed 9 pounds at her full weight, with fur as soft as down. She had a curious “silent” meow, opening her mouth, but making no noise. If you weren’t looking directly at her, you’d never know she had meowed at you.
This year she was 17 and we thought she was in relatively good health. Then, suddenly she stopped eliminating her waste and I knew something was seriously wrong. She also started vomiting every other day and the weight started to drop off her, so I took her to our regular vets at VCA Foothill Veterinarians. They said she had developed hyperthyroidism, and gave me medicine to give to her by mouth twice a day. They said it would slow down the weight loss, and in a couple of weeks I thought she was getting better. But, she started losing weight again and still was eliminating irregularly, so I got another opinion at the Rose City Vets office. They said her thyroid was slowly normalizing, but had no answer about her elimination problems.
She started throwing up every meal, and I took her back to VCA Foothill to see why she wasn’t improving. The doctor there told me that Tootsie was impacted (her excrement had hardened inside her intestinal tract and bowels), and that she needed enemas done all night long to clear them out. They are a daycare facility only, so our vet suggested we take her to Pasadena Veterinary Specialists (PVS) in South Pasadena, where they could monitor her condition over night.
They didn’t remember me, but I had been there years before with a severely sick cat (he had Cryptococcus). Dr Mott told me that the treatments would be $800.00 each and that she couldn’t guarantee the treatments wouldn’t kill him, so I got out of there as fast as I could and vowed to never go back.
But I was scared for Tootsie, so against my better judgment, I took my sweet Tootsie to PVS. Although I was careful to bring all of her current medical records and test results from VCA Foothill Vets, they insisted on doing all the tests over again, at a cost of $2,000.00. When they agreed with VCA Foothill that she needed overnight treatment for the impaction, they came up with another few thousand dollars in costs for keeping her overnight. They spent more time talking to me about money than they did on the care for my poor Tootsie.
Later that evening, Dr Mott called me with a diagnosis of an obstruction in Tootsie’s intestines. She informed me that it would cost another few thousand dollars to cut Tootsie open to see if it was cancer (in which case it couldn’t be cured) or a tumor (and it would, naturally cost more to remove it). She also informed me that either way, she could not promise that Tootsie would survive the surgeries.
I couldn’t stand to listen to this woman coldly insist on more money and more procedures when she had just told me that either way Tootsie would probably die. I asked her to prepare Tootsie to come home, so I could spend my last week with her, and she coldly informed me of the balance I owed before I could pick her up.
When I got back to PVS, Tootsie was filthy and stinking, they had let her lie in her own filth from the enemas, and she was shaking with the cold. The clinic is kept at a blood chilling temperature, as are the people who work there.
We finally decided that my poor baby had had enough of procedures and found a very kind doctor who does in-home euthanasia. She had a very peaceful ending to her life on November 30th, at home among the people who loved her.
I still miss her every day.
But the nightmare with PVS wasn’t over. On December 16th one of the receptionists at PVS called MY HOME NUMBER and asked me if Tootsie had been euthanized! I told her she had called the client, not a vet’s office, and she did not even apologize, she just hung up the phone.
Since I had answered my phone from a private residence, in no way could any intelligent person have construed that it was VCA Foothill Vets, since they answer their phone with their company’s name. Furthermore, the receptionist was laughing while she asked if Tootsie had been euthanized.
Her insensitivity was emphasized when she called me right back, again laughing her head off, to ask if Tootsie had been euthanized. I am shocked at her cavalier attitude about a most painful time in my life. This is the third furbaby I have lost this year due to old age or illness, and I find nothing funny whatsoever about that employee’s insensitivity to my pain.
I will never step foot into the PVS clinic again, Tootsie was treated abominably while she was there and thousands of dollars later, was no better off than when I left her with them. If you care about your beloved pets, DO NOT GO to Pasadena Veterinarian Specialists.