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Thread: Ear Infection - Serious Fright Aggression Against Vet (moved to health issues) Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
02-28-2014 09:17 PM
Draugr Samson is severely fear aggressive at the vet. They can't get anywhere near him. I have to muzzle him and hold him tight against me so he can get a sedative shot.

Even knocked out like that, if the vet looks too far in his ear (he's had 4-5 ear infections requiring veterinary examination in his life), he can STILL fight through the sedatives and jerk his head around to make it impossible for him to do anything. That's how severe his phobia is.
02-28-2014 01:10 PM
my boy diesel
Originally Posted by Longfisher View Post
I graduate from a medical school (human biochemical research PH.D.) with experience as a phlebotomist. Wife is an RN. We would require very little instruction to handle a hypodermic injection or even to start an IV.

We told the vets this but they won't trust us to do it...PERIOD.

It's mystifying to me. I simply can't understand the way they practice medicine as it's so counter-intuitive to someone with medical training.

if u have all this medical expertise you would know there are three types of ear infections
inner ear, middle ear and external ear
saying a shot or pills should fix the ear infection because it works with kids when they are sick is showing that you don't understand ear anatomy

kids get middle ear infections so washes would not work which is why doctors don't prescribe ear wash, but rather oral or injection of antibiotic

dogs tend to get outer or external ear infections which revolve around yeast and bacteria which is why washes and ointments will work because you can reach the external ear canal with them
yeast often causes the itching and when dogs scratch they introduce bacteria into the now broken skin

humans can get all three types of ear infections but ive never heard of a dog getting a middle ear infection which is called otitis media

dogs can get inner ear infections too

external ear infections are extremely painful to dogs and since pills wont fix it you have to do washes and ointments

you might look into ZYMOX
It has fixed up one of our dogs chronic yeast infection and seems to be quite painless

ps i just read about your dogs swimming habits
yes it makes more sense to know that since dogs who swim have damp ears which then are an ideal environment for yeast to thrive and again it itches so they scratch and bacteria then is introduced to the environment as well
humans who swim are more prone to external otitis as well for same reasons as above
02-28-2014 09:31 AM
Blanketback Thank you for the update - I'm so glad Zeus was able to get his ear issue taken care of, and that he's allowing you to work with them now. I also take my dog for frequent swims, so I understand why you'd want to be able to do this. Good for all of you!
02-28-2014 08:19 AM

Ultimately, we conditioned Zeus to the Vet's office and staff by walking him the almost two miles to the vets each day for almost a week and then walking him back from the vet's through the drainage which is nearby (bayous with lots of things to smell).

The vet techs made a fuss over him each time and we gave him cut up hot dog wieners to reward him. He was very nervous at first and wouldn't take a treat. Over time he got to where he expected them and settled down a bit.

Vet gave us some sedatives for him to take just before he got there for the cleaning. They certainly had a effect but not enough it turns out.

Sr. tech greeted the dog on the big day, took the leash and shooed us home. They tried to treat his ears without sedation without luck. Dog showed his teeth repeatedly. So, they IM sedated him and got not only his ears cleaned and packed but also all his annuals done at the same time.

Cost $380 which was a lot less than I'd thought it would be.

Dog was woozie for one day and not quite right for two or three days after that. But now is completely normal again.

Ears were a mess, according to the tech, but not as bad as they'd seen before in other dogs. Packed them with a waxy substance which contained anti-fungals and anti-microbials and the ears slowly bled the stuff out over about two weeks (or was absorbed, I don't know).

Ears completely better now. Glad we finally submitted to the experts.

However, I'm not in any way whatsoever inclined to not question or even challenge a medical provider about his intentions when he treats my dog, my kids or my wife or me. I'm in the medical field and I know they aren't magicians and they're not god. They're human, make tons of mistakes, are busy as all get out, have their own prejudices and biases and they bear watching.

Why? Because the magnitude of harm they can do is great when they do make mistakes.

Do want to countercondition the dog to the ear drops because he loves to swim. And, I don't want to take him to swim if he's not going to allow me to use preventative measures to avoid all this trouble and expense. So, we've some work to do.

There's something else I've noticed lately, though. It may be that he's just older now and more accepting of my handling. Or, he may have learned a less on about his ears and that they are better when he submits, willingly or not (somehow I doubt he has that sort of reasoning ability, though). Or, maybe I'm just giving off the right cues now and being calmer about it. Or, maybe they were painful before and he just didn't want anyone around them.


Anyway, it worked out.

12-19-2013 02:49 PM
selzer Respect works both ways. It sounds like surgeons have their egos, and pet owners are snotty. I expect that vet techs who feel that way may be treating pet owners as thought they are too stupid to follow simple directions, and can't possibly have a clue about their own dogs.

I find that when I respect everyone, until they give me a good cause to lose my respect, I am generally treated with respect by most people. And when someone does not, for whatever reason, I usually don't allow those people to ruin my attitude for the majority of people.

People who are at the vet, and especially at an ER, are under a lot of stress. They are concerned for their buddy's life in many cases. We don't always act our best in those situations. Yes, I am going to offer whatever help I can. It does not mean I am putting down technicians. That is the farthest from my mind. It means, give me something I can do, so you guys can work together to fix my dog. Letting the vet know that I have experience or training, isn't suggesting that I am better than the worthless technicians, it is simply information for the vet so that he or she can feel comfortable using me if they need me and to what level. If my dog will be much more comfortable with me out of the room, I will leave the room. If my dog will be much more comfortable with me digging around in the ear, taking her temperature, holding her head while the vet works the stuck puppy out on the other end -- yep, been there, then I don't think the egos of the vet techs should factor into it at all.

BTW, normally, I am perfectly happy to let the techs do it ALL with my dogs. They can take their temperature, give them the shots, take blood -- ticks me off sometimes when they stab the dog half a dozen times. Sometimes I may be in a situation where an extra pair of hands is a help. And that is when I offer to help. An emergency C-section, where you want a tech or breeder for each pup so the vet can work on the bitch while each pup is got going at the same time. Or coming in on a Sunday to get x-rays and it is just me and the vet there. I can help. Normally, I am perfectly happy to stay in my little cubby while they take my dog away for x-rays. I do like to watch the ultra-sounds though because they are fascinating, and so is the scope thing, I want to see what's causing a problem, but I do not insist.

I don't care for people taking my dog out of my presence for simple things like taking blood, and my clinic doesn't. If I am at an ER, they will, and it is a leap of faith to allow this.
12-19-2013 02:00 AM
Colie CVT That wasn't directed at you, David! I actually rather enjoy reading all the posts that I've seen from you on the boards here lol. We seem to agree a good deal of the time. It was directed to the poster over you. I don't always do the quoting thing and I probably should have used the name.

It is definitely a pretty crazy job! I basically traded dealing with clients to dealing with the surgeons and their egos. But it is easier to keep track of those three and all their quirks/complaints than pet owners some days lol. It's actually kind of refreshing for me when owners of working dogs come in. The mentality is really very different! I like working with the K9s from the police and the air force base nearby. It's an honor getting to help them out!
12-19-2013 01:55 AM
David Winners
Originally Posted by Colie CVT View Post
I am gonna keep this short since this post isn't about this.

You are focusing on one thing and missing the fact that I agreed with you that in certain circumstances (which you have described) a vet will have an owner do things that they wouldn't normally have them do depending on what would be the best for the patient. That still doesn't mean I cannot feel looked down at when I do often see people who have been in such a situation before, or who are in a medical field think they should get to do things all of the time because they do it in people/did it before. :P That's my daily existence when dealing with many clients. And a reason I am happily back in surgery where client interaction is minimum. That kind of thing wears on you after years of it, especially in years of working in the ER.
I was agreeing with you

My wife is a tech that started as a receptionist. I don't envy you (or her) your job at all. I'd rather get drug around muddy fields and bit occasionally than deal with pet owners all day! Of course she thinks I'm crazy... glad you moved into the back if that's what works for you!

David Winners
12-19-2013 12:42 AM
Colie CVT I am gonna keep this short since this post isn't about this.

You are focusing on one thing and missing the fact that I agreed with you that in certain circumstances (which you have described) a vet will have an owner do things that they wouldn't normally have them do depending on what would be the best for the patient. That still doesn't mean I cannot feel looked down at when I do often see people who have been in such a situation before, or who are in a medical field think they should get to do things all of the time because they do it in people/did it before. :P That's my daily existence when dealing with many clients. And a reason I am happily back in surgery where client interaction is minimum. That kind of thing wears on you after years of it, especially in years of working in the ER.
12-19-2013 12:18 AM
David Winners Sedate the dog for deep ear clean and diagnosis of infection.

Medically necessary IMHO.

With my working dog, I did everything until / unless she was knocked down for the first months I had her. Later, we had the opportunity to counter condition and she's all better now.

David Winners
12-19-2013 12:18 AM
Originally Posted by Colie CVT View Post
In certain circumstances, vets do show owners things that can be useful in a pinch. If the place is a small practice and you don't always have someone to help, or if you know the owner knows how to help hold without the pet becoming worse, that's one thing. Showing a person how to give insulin for their diabetic cat? Medically necessary. Showing someone how to tube feed puppies because they lost their mother/they have so many the mom needs help? Medically necessary.

Technically the vet letting you get exposed to x-ray radiation would be legally something that could get them into trouble. Radiation exposure is something that they have to worry about with employees, and those without radiation safety badges are not allowed to take x-rays at either practice I work at.

My point with that is basically this.

When people post things like that, saying why doesn't my vet just let me do etc because I am insert what you are here, you are telling me and those like me one thing - whether you mean to do it or not.

That my profession is worthless.

That all the time and devotion that I put into knowing everything that I have to know in order to be a productive and useful Certified Veterinary Technician is a waste of time because it should just be something anybody can do.

Would you tell this to a nurse? An MD? It gets tossed at us a lot.

So it's a bit of a nerve/pet peeve. I have a lot of respect for nurses and doctors. For professionals in the field of human medicine. I know what they do, the things they deal with, and I am certain that I am very polite and understanding with them. I rarely get the same courtesy and it frankly hurts. There are many things that I have to worry about every day, with every case, and I know its the same for the vets.

Life in general when you find a vet who you like and trust, is much easier when you work with us rather than against us. It's the difference between us seeing your name and the name of your pet and groaning inwardly at what it may entail and being thrilled to see you because we always enjoy getting to work with you.

Sorry to hijack this some Longfisher, people gave you really good ways to help countercondition your dog. I don't pretend to fully understand all aspects of training since that's a job for a dog trainer/behaviorist, but I know that I do try to find ways to help make things easier for my patients that brings fears, stresses and pain into consideration every time. Hopefully with the right clinic and people, you can get your boy all straightened out.
My brother has is an RN and has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. My mother wanted ME to learn how to dress her wound when she had her stoma surgery. I am NOT a nurse, and I do NOT want to be a nurse and I was dreadfully afraid of hurting her. My dad had to do it. And my brother. Yes, I am a coward. My dad who has no medical training whatsoever, in fact was raised Christian Science and has been terrified of doctors and anything medical for most of his life, was better at taking care of that wound that my brother, the BSN.

Does this mean his profession is worthless? I think not.

I am a breeder. I sometimes have to do somethings that ordinary pet owners do not have to do. I was there during the first C-section, so my mom asked me if I could do a c-section now. I looked at her like she was from Mars, and told her no way. If my bitch was dead, I could deliver the puppies, clean them up, get them going if they were not already dead, and tube feed them -- I just don't see how that would ever be the case. But I neither have the knowledge or the drugs/equipment to anesthesize a bitch, and haven't the first idea how to sew her up properly, and there's a reason they have even us, the breeders working on the puppies, the vet is in there working on the bitch.

It is not that a vet tech's job is worthless. But a veterinarian has to have the knowledge to use the resources they have on hand, and train them in the trenches so to speak. If you are a breeder or a nurse, you are probably not going to feint if you see some blood. You are probably going to be able to give a shot without freaking your dog out. I helped with the x-ray because the vet met me on a Sunday at the clinic with a bitch who had a litter and was running a fever. We needed to know if she had retained a puppy. There were no technicians there. I helped.

I am an engineer. It doesn't freak me out when people modify designs or design things on their own. It doesn't mean my job is useless. It means that one doesn't have to have a degree or training to use the creativity of their brain.
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