Steam blowing out of my ears.
I took our sweet old kitty Mamfy to the vet yesterday morning, as scheduled, for the extraction of an abscessed tooth.
We had planned it last week, but I was never told how much the procedure cost.
I won't lie, I was SHOCKED when I dropped her off and they reviewed the cost of the procedure. Over FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS!
But hey, all the costs looked on the up and up when they showed me the itemized invoice, and I knew she HAD to have the procedure, so what was I going to do? I gave them the required deposit of $150 and left her in their hands.
When I went in last night to pick her up, I asked if I could pay another $150 at that time and the balance next week.
The secretary checked with the practice manager (by phone) and told me I could pay half of the balance at the time, and leave them a post-dated check for the rest, but if I did that,
THEY WOULD NOT SEND HOME ANY OF HER MEDICATIONS!
So wait, I said. You're telling me if I don't pay the balance in full, right here and now, you would send my elderly cat home, after just having several teeth pulled, with NO antibiotics or pain meds?
Well, yes. We did review the charges with you this morning, and you signed off.
Yes, and I'm not disputing the cost, although quite frankly I think it is exceedingly high. I'm just asking if I could pay a part of the bill next week.
We can't do that.
Are you aware that I have been a client here for over ten years, and that I bring roughly a billion animals into this practice?
Yes, I can see that you have quite a number of animals.
And my account is in good standing? We've paid you thousands upon thousands of dollars over the years, always on time?
And yet you're going to tell me that if I don't pay you every cent right now, you will send my cat home without medicine? Do you have any idea how unethical that is?
I'm just the messenger.
Yeah, I know. How about if you messenge back to your practice manager that this is sickening? I am truly disgusted right now. I am not disputing the charges. I am not asking for a reduced fee. I am simply asking for you to allow me to pay you some today, and the rest next week. But you're going to hold my cat as ransom. This is not how a vet's office should be conducting business, especially not with a loyal client with an excellent payment history.
Of course, this whole conversation is paraphrased, but that's the gist.
And of course I paid them every red cent.
They may be comfortable sending an animal home post-surgery without meds, but I'm not.
Guess the kids will have to make their peace with Ramen till next payday.
I don't know, am I out of line?
I mean, I could see if I just walked in the door and they didn't know me from Adam, but shouldn't my history with them count for something?
We would keep them in the black if all they saw was just my lab Sunny, but for those of you new here, I have six dogs and four cats, plus farm animals that they see.
I spend a small fortune in this practice. For all the small animals, I pay in full at the time of visits, the farm animal visits are billed to me and we pay when we get the bill. In full.
Tell me I'm crazy.
Or tell me the practice manager is unethical.
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