A common question I get from people is "why did you keep taking him to that hospital?" It is a decision/choice that brings severe regret and guilt to me every moment of the day. I truly wish it was that easy to have just switched.
Where we live (burbs of Chicago) there are not a lot of options for 24/7 specialty animal hospitals. When Otis's RBC dropped to deadly levels we had to get him immediately to the hospital for a blood transfusion. We needed a hospital that was close in proximity. There is no "heads up" for when his RBC dropped and this hospital was 30 min from our home. We needed to get him there and we needed to get him there fast.
About 2 months in with this hospital I called around to the select few to try to get him transferred or at least a second opinion. However, and I completely understand, they would of had to redo ALL Otis's labs, procedures, imaging, etc. We could NOT put Otis through ALL that again. And frankly, we could NOT afford to essentially start all over.
I also learned that this hospital Otis went to is known as the "Mayo Clinic" of vets. When you look them up on Yelp, for example, you read SO many good things. It was not until after I realized they pay Yelp to remove negative reviews. They will still keep some on their profile to look legit, but if you scroll down on the page you will see "reviews not recommended." Currently there are 133. And one of mine is there. These are where all those negative reviews go. Yelp will DENY that they do such but I have met people that told me they too pay Yelp to make the negative reviews "vanish."
To be completely honest, we were brainwashed that we were getting our boy the best care. As you read in his story, we were fed so much "false hope." They took advantage of our vulnerability at our darkest hour. We truly believed Otis would survive. Otherwise we would of NEVER put him through it all.
The other night my husband came across a recording he took during one of our last visit with Otis's internal med doc. I sat there listening to this man tell us that Otis was going to heal! He said things like: "he will be walking around again", "he will start eating his food again" etc. I sobbed for an HOUR after listening to this recording. He was LYING TO US! AndI we heard him dismissing us over and over! But at the time I believed this man was being honest and was doing everything in Otis's best interest to live.
This hospital is known to "keep your pet going." They are ONLY prolonging their death. Of course back then I did not know this. Oh God, how I wish I knew then what I know now. It was not until after my boy passed when I created my advocacy group that I came into contact with MANY (I am talking over 25 individuals) who were put in the same situation as Otis and us by this hospital. We were NOT alone. And neither were they.
So when you read my boy' story and ask why we did not take him somewhere else. This is why. And I HATE myself for it. But I truly believed at that time I was saving my boy. I would do ANYTHING to go back in time. Maybe he would still be here.
Do not judge someone and their choices until you walk in their shoes.
I pray it NEVER happens to you.