What kind of options do I have against negligence or malpractice against a veterinarian. Quebec. None. Exploring

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Customer: what kind of options do I have against negligence or malpractice against a veterinarian
JA: What province are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Quebec
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: None. Exploring options, especially if this proves to be life threatening or inhibiting
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Does he want details now or later
Answered by Debra in 47 mins 2 years ago
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Debra
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Debra
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Debra, Expert

Hello! My name is Debra (formerly known as Legal Ease). Thank you for your question. I'm reviewing it now, and will post back again shortly.

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Debra, Expert

I am sorry to hear that it sounds like something terrible happened.

Can you please let me know the basic facts and then confirm that what you are asking about is whether you can sue the vet?

Customer
My older dog has had some issues with his leg that the vet prescribed a shot for. This has been an issue since last year. There was a slight limp, his walking long distances was impacted, but nothing else too severe.
He also has allergies and gets skin infections. He started favoring his back right paw and it was black.with inflammation, so i took him to the vet in case there was an infection (previous case where his foot swelled right up so wanted to avoid an emergency visit).Because of covid19 its drop off your pet and consult via phone.
Customer
i dropped off my dog to his regular vet clinic he has been at since 8 weeks old.I told them about the paw they said there was no infection. He was due for his maintenance shot for his limp, so they gave him that. We discussed bringing him in and getting x-rays done to determine what is going on with his leg. At which point I asked if the x-ray process could hurt him in any way. Vet responded it could aggravate the condition and he could be sore after but not in any way cause new or worsen the issue. We talked 30 mins.
Customer
At which point we decided to do bloodwork in case medication was needed and so they could proceed with the xray which was to be scheduled the next day when the bloodwork came in.When I got my dog back, he had a bandage around his BAD leg. They took blood from the bad leg. My dog is a GSD, is finicky and worried and last time I had bloodwork done with them a year ago they tried the same thing, but I was there. I saw them hold onto his leg as he pulled away and told them to stop because it was a bad leg and he didn't need them to make a problem worse. I didn't think to eveb mention that. I was thinking of everything else. Anyways we get home and he's just not right after the vet. Seems more depressed or down and just not moving much. I don't push it because maybe he is still feeling sick (he has an ear infection). But that day, the very next day aftrr the appointment i find a lesion in his paw pads at the front. They missed it. Thats not the problem. The problem is that the day after that, he's not so mopey so I bring him outside and finally see that his limp is astronomically worse. He can't keep weight on the leg or foot. He can't run or his bad leg starts crossing into the path of his good leg , so he now instead of trotting or running, when he gets excited he bunny hops a few times then needs to stop. His whole balance is off and Im worried to let him outside and make it worse
Customer
They obviously had pulled on the leg or manipulated it in a way that injured him either worse, or in a new way because his leg was already weaker. No one stopped to think and keep him from injuring that leg when they came in to take blood. The vet obviously didn't make sure the technicians were safe with that leg either. On top of ot they missed an infection so they were not careful or focused that day.
My dog is older. I will be taking him to a specialist now because i can't trust the vet he's been going to all.this time. I don't know what's wrong with his leg yet, but im so angry and hurt.
His injury was made worse from that visit. Now if I find out that he needs surgery or expensive treatments that could have been avoided without the manhandling of my dog's bad leg, I want to take some.kind of action against them. They shouldn't be able to haphazardly treat animals without their owners there. Worse, if this injury leads to serious Mobility and a decline in my dog's life, I just can't contain my anger. All could have been avoided if they had taken some damn care and thought about what was being done! If the techs had been warned by the vet or if they had used some critical thinking skills and realized if I'm coming in for problems on the back right leg, dont mess around with that leg and pull it to try to keep the dog still and keep him put for blood work.
Customer
i want to know what types of action i can take and if I'm limited to taking only one
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Debra, Expert

That is all awful. What I don't understand is are you sure this is what happened and did you ask them why when they had a choice of four legs they decided to take the blood from the one that was painful?

Customer
They arent talking. They're making me wait for the vet who works at 5pm, so i dont eveb know when she will call. When i called i said I wanted to know everyone's name who touched him, told them exactly that - why the hell did they take.blood from.the weak leg- and i only got "the vet is in at 5pm, she will be left a message to call you"
Customer
they implied that it happened at home
Customer
they kept asking 'you didnt see hom limp until when? Until the call back about the lesion?'
Customer
The vet was playing phone tag with me. I exected her to call back about the blood work the very next day, and she didnt and that is when i saw the lesion. I called the day after about the lesion and we kept missing each other. I just kept thinking his behavior was weord but maybe explained by the ear infection and being alone, and then now the lesion so maybe he still has a problem they didn't see in the paws. Then his leg looked off and we were thinking maybe its cramped or something because of the bloodwork. But i was finally about to see him run and walk and play yesterday whicj
Customer
Which is 4 days in. Before that he was only out to do his pee and poo, and they was no commotion (him running or barking ) because I'd have to get out and take care of that for pur crazy neighbors. So i didn't see anything because i wasn't there to see. Plus he was moping and sleeping a lot in the house i didn't bug him.
Customer
now i think they are trying to imply that it was x days after when I saw it so it happened here.
Customer
100% it did not happen here.
Customer
Also, i can't say what happened because i was not allowed inside with my dog. But I do know his behavior. We are in and out of the vet so.much since he was 1 yr old due to his allergies. I know how he is to take blood and be examined. Maybe i asked them.to do too.much. maybe they had to have some force because i usually hold my dog. I just thought they were professional enough to not hurt him and be patient with him.
Customer
like i said before, last time we were taking blood there, they did the same mixup, tried to go.for his back leg. Well then being the vet technicians i thought maybe they need to do it on the back leg so just watched until my dog was pulling to get aaay and they were not letting go of his leg. I don't know of thats a move or something to make the dogs be still but I had to stop them so fast and remind them that it was a bad leg and not to pull it and to take blood from another leg. They had issue finding a vein, so i remember being like " well if you need to use that leg the I will hold him steady and maybe need someone else but don't pull that leg at all because its a bad leg" and so they made the other leg work.
Customer
what do i need to start building a case. I am finding a way to get that vet on the phone this evening. Is there something I can start with now, do I record the conversation,
Customer
What do i ask other than the obvious questions, if i get them to comp something from my bill will that nullify a lawsuit if thats a route i take? And who do I bring into this. What regulatory board or provincial body would i issue a complaint with.
Customer
Im not saying i will take it far, but if this turns out bad for my dog i will do whatever i can to get justice and closure. So what should i start doing now in case i need to start a legal case
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Debra, Expert

I am sorry that you're so upset. I can well imagine how you feel. I really trust my vet and would be horrified to learn that something like this happened because I was stuck in the parking lot.

You can certainly refuse to pay any bill and they can try and sue you for that.

But it is very hard to sue for the life or even the health of an animal because our legal system treats animals as objects so you may not be able to sue for a very much in the sense that if it doesn't cost very much to replace your dog they may say that is all you are entitled to. It is very frustrating and actually not reflective of the values of our society but that is the law.

You can definitely report the vet to their licencing body if it comes to that. That will ensure that this never happens to another animal but it won't get you any financial compensation.

The vets are insured and it may be that if you threaten a lawsuit you will get some compensation. But for now I suggest you find out exactly what the vet has to say this evening and yes you can record the conversation because in Canada only one party to a conversation needs to consent to the recording.

Does that help?

Please feel free to post back with any follow-up questions you may have. If you don't have any then I hope I have earned a 5 star rating but if you don't feel that I have please don't hesitate to reply back and let me know what more I can do to assist you. Finally, please know that even after you rate me I will be here for you and you can ask follow-up questions if you think of them later on at no further charge of course.

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