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Vet put down dog without owners consent, now chasing for money

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Hi All,

 

A friend of ours is in a huge amount of debt from her marriage, where her husband built up this debt, cheated on her and was also very abusive. Our friend had no choice but to go into a refuge with their 2yr old son.

 

Whilst in the refuge, her husband didn't give her dog the medication that it needed and it became ill. the husband took the dog to the vets in the morning, but the vet put the dog to sleep in the afternoon. The dog belonged solely to our friend, not the husband. The vet did not call our friend on her mobile phone to speak with, as the dog's owner), they were happy to speak with her estranged husband. The vets have sent our friend the bill and asked her to solely pay it as the sole vet account holder and dog owner.

 

She wants to know if they can do that? Someone takes the dog in ( who the vet knows) and destroy it without t=contacting the owner and also without checking that the vet account holder is happy to accept the charge for this treatment?

 

many thanks in advance

 

E5D


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Suggest your friend writes a letter of complaint to the senior Vet at the practice and suggests that this needs to be considered as part of the official complaints process, so it can be escalated to the relevant professional body as necessary.

 

Your friend did not authorise any treatment and therefore cannot be liable for it. Simply being the account holder at the Vets is not enough as no authorisation was provided.


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I'm no expert and what I'm about to say doesn't make sense to me, but a friend of mine took his dog (very old dog 18 yo) for a jab and was going to collect late afternoon.

Got a message on answer machine an hour later saying that they had to put the dog down because of complications.

He couldn't answer the phone and only heard the message around 5pm.

By that time they had put his dog to sleep.

He contacted a dog charity and they said that if the dog is suffering it is the vet duty to put it to sleep even without owner consent.

They can also charge a fee for this, however many do not do because they understand the heartbreak.

Again, I don't know how legal it is but the charity was independent and had no contact with the vet, so my friend took it for good.

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Every separate 'course of treatment' is a separate contract and your friend never contracted for this. She may own the dog, she may be the person who normally takes it to the vet but if the husband took it in without her authorisation then the husband became the client for that visit, not her.

 

http://www.rcvs.org.uk/advice-and-guidance/code-of-professional-conduct-for-veterinary-surgeons/supporting-guidance/communication-and-consent/

 

The first paragraph is pretty clear

Informed consent

 

11.1 Informed consent, which is an essential part of any contract, can only be given by a client who has had the opportunity to consider a range of reasonable treatment options, with associated fee estimates, and had the significance and main risks explained to them.

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Thank you for your replies


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