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The Adventures of a Tripawd Boxer


Getting Prepared

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One of the best things I did was to find a vet that understood my dog.  Bubba was 110lbs of solid muscle (Ok, maybe not all muscle)! He is a large Boxer and can be very intimidating.  Although, those that know the breed, know that their personalities are that of a gentle giant.  Bubba was going to a vet that was very timid around him and felt the need to muzzle him to examine him.  One day, we left that office with a big sore on Bubba’s nose from the muzzle.  I would never go back.  I found Dr. Wilson.  His expertise with Bubba’s “type” was evident as I watched him examine Bubba.  He knew exactly what to do to get his job done accurately and effectively.  I have absolute trust in him.  That is the first important step – find a doctor that you can trust and who understands your dog.

The doctor – pet – owner relationship is so important.  When my vet suggested we see an Oncology specialist for further recommendations prior to the amputation, I supported that decision.  I took a day off work, traveled to an vet oncology clinic 40 miles from home and paid for an expensive consultation.  Sounds like a waste of time, right?  Actually, the visit was valuable to me.  Step 2: Get a second opinion.  No matter how much you like your vet, it never hurts to hear what an “expert” has to say.  In Bubba’s case, the recommendation of the specialist was exactly the same as my vet (but there was a $4000.00 difference between surgical/medical management at a specialty clinic versus my vet clinic).

Immediately, I called my vet and explained that I would like to proceed with amputation.  I explained to him that the cancer clinic was far from my home and very expensive.  Surgery there would make it difficult for me to get to and from appointments and would be financially devastating to us.  I asked him how he felt about doing the surgery and if it was possible under his service at his clinic.  Dr. Wilson explained his experience with this surgery and detailed the steps involved in recovery at his clinic.  A technician from his office called me immediately after to explain the charges associated with the surgery and follow-up.  Step 3: prepare for financial and appointment obligations relating to the surgery and post-surgery period.

I cannot explain how grateful I am for finding Dr. Wilson.  He is conscious of my goals for Bubba and is always careful to acknowledge my concerns and questions with honest answers.  He is respectful to my pet and to me.  His treatment plans are explained in detail and I always leave his clinic knowing what to expect.  Having an understanding of your responsibilities, financial and care-taking, are crucial to making sure the amputation is a successful surgery.

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