This note is in response to a complaint against me by a Mr. Jordan Isaac Fouts of Winston Salem, North Carolina. Mr. Fouts first contacted us here at Southside Animal Hospital on Wed. April 13, 2011 to make an appointment to have his dog “Duke” neutered on May 3, 2011. The staff member explained to Mr. Fouts that in order to schedule an elective surgery for his pet, our hospital required a physical assessment by me in advance of any planned surgery. Furthermore, all routine immunizations must be up to date; the dog must currently be on a heartworm preventative as well as been checked for intestinal parasites within recent memory. Mr. Fouts assured my staff member that his pet was indeed current on all immunizations and that he was presently giving a heartworm preventative. He was asked to please present documentation of Duke’s medical records at the time of his pre-surgical exam. Mr. Fouts chose to delay Duke’s physical assessment until May 2st, 2011, which was the day before the scheduled surgery. He chose the option of dropping off Duke for the day on his way to work. Very little medical history accompanied Duke, none of which mentioned him having ever been vaccinated. Using the information provided by Mr. Fouts, I called The Banfield pet hospital in Arden, NC and acquired the balance of Duke’s medical record from his single visit there. Again, this included no record of any vaccine administration. Duke was seen at that hospital by Dr. Taylor Burge on January 17, 2011 for various complaints, where he was given a heartworm check and intestinal parasite check. On that date both tests were negative. Mr. Fouts declined to purchase any heartworm preventative on that occasion, although he apparently acquired some eventually, because he stated that he gave Duke Heartworm preventative “intermittently.” Following Duke’s physical assessment I called Mr. Fouts at work (8:40am) to inform him of my findings (Good, except that both of Duke’s ears were infected), and to inquire as to where else he may have taken his pet for veterinary care. He stated that he could not recall, but that he would contact his mother for that information and get back to me shortly. At 2:15pm, well over 5 hours later, I still had not heard from Isaac. I phoned him to make an inquiry as to what he had learned. He stated that he has learned nothing and asked that I contact his mother myself, which I did (Ms. Fouts of Hendersonville, NC). She allowed that Duke may have been taken to a mobile rabies clinic once. Other than that, she had no immediate recollection. I left her my fax number in case she could find or recall any other pertinent vaccine history on Duke. I informed Mr. Fouts that it would be in everyone’s best interest if he could at least locate the name of Duke’s previous veterinarian(s) so that I could call them myself and obtain proof of his vaccination history. Otherwise we could start his vaccinations that day, wait 2 weeks for him to build up a little basic immunity and then proceed on to surgery. I prepared Mr. Fouts a quote that included his exam, parasite check and the basic vaccines (DA2PP, Bordetella, & Rabies) for Duke that was recommended. Mr. Fouts said that he much preferred to take Duke to the low cost spay and neuter clinic, where they were vastly superior because no one planned to examine Duke, or cared about his immunizations (except Rabies) and no one cared about heartworms or intestinal parasites. Having spent a good part of my day trying to pry basic information out of dear Mr. Fouts, I did not feel inclined to waste my breath explaining that a low cost spay and neuter clinic is not in any way a real veterinary hospital, and that they have very little interest in animal health issues other than population control. Save for being rude to my staff and refusing to pay his bill, Mr. Fouts left peacefully with little Duke on his mission to “neuterize him” quickly and cheaply. Yet a missive reached my desk on May 5th, 2011, stating that the same Jordan Isaac Fouts had lodged complaints against me and my hospital with the Better Business Bureau (of which I am a member in good standing) as well as making rude postings online. In reviewing his letter, I find some of his complaints to be pure falsehoods, fabricated entirely by Mr. Fouts. Others, I concede could be possible misunderstandings. One such might be my desire to double check Duke’s stool sample for intestinal parasites. Certainly the history recorded by Dr. Burge at The Banfield four months earlier suggested a likelihood of a verminous infection. Actually a dose of anthelmintic (“De-wormer”) was the only treatment administered to Duke on that date, in spite of a negative fecal sample. No follow up retreatment was documented beyond that point, so my desire to recheck is understandable. Indeed, I took it upon myself to double check the fecal anyway (at my own expense) as I felt it was truly necessary to assure a good outcome for Duke, should we proceed with surgery. So, in summary, my response to Mr. Isaac Fouts, besides incredulity, is that his rejection of my offering proper care for his pet is strictly his personal business. He is free to seek whatever level of care for his companion (Duke) that he desires. Yet Mr. Fouts needs to be reminded that I too am free to practice veterinary medicine and run my hospital in a manner that is safe, intelligent, and follows accepted standards of good practice. I have no plans to lower my standards to hit his “ankle high” target. I do also strongly question how a state government employee, single, with a basic salary of $40,846.00/per year with full benefits would qualify to receive a “Fur-ever Friends” spay/neuter discount voucher which is meant to assist low-income individuals??? And I strongly resent both Mr. Fouts being rude to the ladies on my staff, as well as attempting to malign my good name! His ranting’s and distortions serve only to discredit himself.
I can not begin to explain the events of today. I usually do not put reviews on things, but this vet, specifically Dr. Emerson is a complete con artist. Since I am low income I obtained a $50 voucher through the humane solutions network. Since Southside Animal Hospital was the closest to my work, I chose to use them. BIG MISTAKE!! Dr. Emerson said that all pets before a neuterization must have a pre-exam done the day before, which seemed logical, but that was going to cost me an extra $50. So I agreed and dropped my dog off in the morning. Well I get a call from Dr. Emerson stating that in order to do the neuterization, my dog must have a rabies, distemper/parvo, and bordetella and fecal examination...which my dog has had recently but me (i know I messed up) have lost the darn records somewhere, except I still had the fecal exam from Banfield). I called around to different vets and they said they had never heard of requiring Distemper/Parvo, Bordetella, or a fecal exam just for a neuterization. I gave all the records of the fecal exam to Dr. Emerson, again done at PetSmart, and he stated he didn't accept results unless he did them himself. He stated that for him to touch my dog and do a neuterization, I would have to have all 3 shots and a fecal exam all for $185 and thats not including the $50 pre exam fee. Well long story short, I called Forsyth County spay/neuter clinic, they said all my dog will need is a $15 rabies vaccine and they will accept my voucher also from Humane Solutions. Please understand, I do not complain, it is so rare for me to write something that would potentially harm their business, but Dr. Emerson at Southside Animal Hospital will take you for every penny you've got and make you have many unnecessary things done. DO NOT TRUST HIM!
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