Some background information you will need to know:
At the beginning of December, our bunny Pancakes got very ill and I took him to the vet. They discovered a tumour in his bladder and I consented to have him euthanized. It was sad for all of us, we sure loved that bunny - but the vet told us that there was nothing we could do.
(An aside - the vet did an x-ray 10 minutes after we left and paid for the euthanasia. I didn't consent to the x-ray, and thought it was odd that he called me to tell me he thought it was a stone and not a tumour; the prognosis was similar but the treatment could now be a risky $1500 surgery. For the second time that night I consented to have him euthanized. My decision was made based on finances in part and also the fact that I was not convinced he would even live through a massive surgery. The vet didn't argue or try to talk me out of my decision, not even for a second).
Now, dear readers, here is some classic foreshadowing. The week after we had Pancakes euthanized, I asked Rob and a few friends if they thought that the vet had really done it. They all told me I was crazy, well, not in so many words, but the gist was that I was nuts to think that.
Fast forward to yesterday. I got a phone call at noon from the vet clinic owner. He told me he had some disturbing news for me. Now, I have only been to this clinic the one time so I knew it had to do with my rabbit. It turns out, the vet on call that night in December never euthanized our rabbit. Long story short, he did the risky surgery after hours, claimed it was an owner surrendered rabbit AND adopted out our rabbit to a friend of his. The vet and tech took it upon themselves to do all of this.
Shock can't describe what I felt on the phone. I was crying, and the clinic owner was very upset too. I have to commend this man - he did not need to call me at all and he took the ethical high road so to speak. He could have just let everything remain status quo but he didn't. The clinic only found out about this whole debacle the day before thanks to the keen eyes of the clinic manager. She put the pieces together: surrendered rabbit, euthanasia paid for but no body, controlled medication use didn't match records.
Now, my main concern at this point was for my kids. The clinic owner told me that Pancakes was now safely back at the clinic as of that morning and did I want him back? The answer was of course yes - but I can't have my kids thinking we euthanize animals and that they can come back from it! I told him I would have to think of a plan and I would call him back. I also voiced my concern that since this was a stone, it could potentially happen again. The owner assured me would we have free rabbit vet care and stated that the health of our bunny was his primary concern. He seems to be a nice man.
Rob had a great idea at this time, he suggested we lie to the kids. This isn't something we took lightly, but, we have two geriatric dogs in our family. I can't have the kids thinking that pets can come back from the dead, so to speak. We decided to tell the kids that we adopted a new rabbit, who looks a lot like Pancakes. While I wasn't comfortable with the lie, I think in this case it is the best thing. I couldn't imaging trying to explain this situation to them; they are 3 and 6.
So, two hours after I received that crazy phone call, Jess and I went to the clinic. I was still in shock - they led us in right away to see him. He looked great! Again, a total shock. I was also feeling upset that I had consented to his euthanasia and here he was, looking great. The vet on call that day was great - he spent time with us, checked over the rabbit from tail to nose, and took some repeat X-rays. He also very patiently answer my questions, my primary one being 'Did I make the right decision in December?' to which he answered yes. We looked at the initial x-ray the vet took - it showed a skinny, sick rabbit with a giant stone (which we now own, as an aside - they gave it to me and I didn't quite know what to do so I put it in my purse. True story.) I asked about the surgery itself. It would have required pain medication, antibiotics and a huge incision - the vet was as shocked as I was that he had made it. This helped me to feel better.
The clinic staff was great to us. Apparently the vet and tech in question have now been fired. This is an believable violation of ethics and there could be serious repercussions to the clinic itself. The rabbit has a follow up appointment in a week and a half and at that time, I will meet the clinic owner himself in person. The clinic bought us all sorts of new rabbit supplies and have helped us create a plan to try to try to make sure the bunny doesn't get another bladder stone.
So, without further ado - I introduce you to our new family member, Toast the new to us/back from the dead/ crazy story pet rabbit:
|I had been crying and was in TOTAL shock at this point|