Puppy owner angry with vets

PUBLISHED: 17:25 16 September 2010

Kerrie Howard's puppy Rio, who had to be put down after becoming ill in July.

Kerrie Howard's puppy Rio, who had to be put down after becoming ill in July.

Archant

A DOG owner from Sidbury has taken her complaint against a Sidmouth vets to the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Kerrie Howard, of Furzehill, says she had to have four-month-old puppy Rio put down in July. She claims he would still be alive if swifter action had been taken by vets at Ikin and Oxenham.

She says she first took the Belgian shepherd Doberman cross into the practice on July 2, as he was suffering from sickness and diarrhoea and had a temperature of 103F.

She says she was told to keep an eye on him overnight, but when the symptoms got worse, she contacted the vets again. When she was seen that evening by the emergency vet, Rio was prescribed rehydration fluids.

Kerrie, 33, said she would have been happy to leave Rio at the vets for monitoring rather than take him home, but claims she was told that wasn’t possible due to nursing levels.

She said: “We spent all night trying to get the fluids in him, but he kept bringing it back up. We had to sit there and watch him suffer.”

Kerrie phoned the vets first thing, but says after not hearing anything for a few hours, she rang an emergency number, which put her through to Corner House vets in Exmouth. Rio was kept there overnight, but he had got worse by the next day, and was then put down, says Kerrie.

Kerrie, who lives with partner Mark and son Oliver, had to buy a labradoodle Mango, to keep whippet pup Otis from pining.

After posting a message on Facebook about not using the Sidmouth vets again, she said she was contacted by the practice’s Gordon Oxenham.

“He was very co-operative and said that they’d help in any way possible, but would have to wait until the vets involved got back from holiday,” she said.

The activities co-ordinator for Sidmouth’s Rose Lawn care home said that after several letters and phone calls, she decided to contact the RCVS.

On Wednesday, the watchdog for veterinary standards had yet to receive the complaint, from which it will decide whether a disciplinary case should be brought.

After contacting the surgery twice, the Herald was told “no comment”.


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