Monday, January 16, 2012

The not so incredible Dr Pol

Anyone who knows me personally knows that I have a passion for high quality medicine, staying updated on current diagnostics and treatments, and generally practicing with compassion and integrity. I am passionate about being the best vet I can possibly be. I am also passionate about spreading the word regarding what veterinarians really do, how much training we undergo, how expensive our education is, and how important GOOD, competent health care is for your pets.

Thus, I am a little dismayed by the way the new National Geographic show portrays veterinarians. Don't get me wrong - Dr Pol seems like a kind-hearted and good man. He has been doing his job a long time. I am not bad-mouthing him. What bothers me is that he is very outdated in his methods. 

Granted, this is a reality TV show. It is being twisted to portray things exactly as NatGeo wants them portrayed. I understand that. But when I see Dr Pol doing an orthopedic surgery (in this case, a femoral head osteotomy) without a cap, mask, or gown on, and minimal sterile surgical technique, I cringe inside. This is a major surgery in which the head of the femur is cut off. Infection is a very, very big concern. Further, this dog - undergoing painful, major surgery - was not even intubated or on anesthesia of any sort. Had this dog arrested during surgery, saving him would have been difficult to impossible without control of his airway and an IV catheter. There was also no evidence of any pain medication being administered.

This way of doing things is very, very out-dated and considered well below the standard of care.

So far, the show presents veterinarians in a very dismal light. In the clinic where I work, patients undergoing surgery are on IV fluids to maintain blood pressure, intubated so that we can breathe for them as necessary, provided with adequate analgesia, and absolute sterile technique is maintained at all times. This is standard or care.



To be absolutely clear, I'm not talking about fancy monitoring equipment (though we have that) or other super expensive, state-of-the-art toys. This is a bag of fluids, which CAN be hung without an expensive pump and a cheap mask, cap, and surgical gown (which are re-usable). Pain medications cost pennies for an injection or 3, and a bag of IV fluids is a couple of dollars. These are CHEAP, easily accessible, and easy interventions that can greatly increase the chance an animal will come through surgery unscathed.

Worse, Dr Pol's show reinforces the idea that all vets are in veterinary medicine strictly for the love of animals (I do love animals, but I also need a job that pays the bills), that we practice substandard medicine that puts patients at risk, and that there have been no improvements in veterinary anesthesia and analgesia in the last decade. It's setting the perception of veterinary medicine back 50 years or more. 



There is no discussion of proper sterile technique, referral for complex cases, chemotherapy, digital xray, constant rate infusions (CRIs) for pain control, or any of the many, many advancements that have been made in all areas. We can do amazing things for animals, yet this show reflects none of that. For Pete's sake, I watched in amazement as he amputated a dog's tail in an exam room with minimal pain medication, no anesthesia, and NO sterile technique. These are all simple, cheap advancements that Dr Pol could easily avail himself of.

It's disheartening. Everyone loves "Good 'ole Doc." He's cheap, he's quick, and he's "old school." Unfortunately, old school doesn't usually benefit critically ill or injured animals. This was evidenced when he gave a mauled puppy a shot of steroid (absolutely NOT indicated in trauma anymore - in human or animal medicine) and left it in a cage. He described the dog as "in shock" - yet he provided no pain medications, IV fluids, or oxygen to stabilize the shock. He placed the puppy in a cage where it died. I treat this kind of thing on a daily basis, and a shot of steroids isn't going to fix a badly mauled animal. It was heartbreaking. 



Again, the interventions would have been relatively cheap - a shot of hydromorphone, a bag of IV fluids, and some oxygen would cost Dr Pol maybe $10.


This show is causing a great deal of unrest in the veterinary community because this is NOT how the majority of us practice veterinary medicine. Unfortunately, most consumers wouldn't know the difference between myself and Dr Pol. Most people think all vets are one and the same.


Anyone watching it? What do you think?

UPDATE! Dr. Pol & his associates have been disciplined by their state board. See http://vetsbehavingbadly.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-incredible-disciplinary-action.html for more information!

143 comments:

  1. This is highly disturbing. Has the AVMA heard of this show? And if so why is this guy still allowed to practice?

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    1. without coming across with dismay, it really sounds to me that all of you that are complaining are vets from the city, i am a farmer that has been raising animals for 40 years, have had my share of vets that want to make a buck, and reduce the effort, it leaves me with dismay that you would think this way, im tired of vets that instead of doing everything you can do, instead of like in my experiences you guys, most not wanting to do large animals, would tell me its better to put down the animal instead of giving the effort. in reading the blog, its seems youre all in this frame of mind, please tell me what state you practice in, so i do not move there, i live in indian, and am surrounded with a couple of vets like dr. pol, thank god

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    2. There is nothing in the article "The not so incredible Dr Pol" that suggest as vets we wont do everything in our power to save an animal's life. The article is discussing about the lack of sterile preparation and out of date techniques used. Dr Pol is an old school vet but he can certainly benefit from some new school tech

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    3. You can bad mouth him all you want but I would still take my animals to him over all you high faluttin vets! I have had many animals over my lifetime and the ones that fared the worse were the ones that were seen by the so called modern high techs. They broke my dogs teeth, let one die from cardiomyopathy because a halloween party was more important than a thorough exam. This vet even had sonogram capability in her office. And most of the time treatment for my animals was totally cost prohibitive. As far as holding my pet while the vet does an exam - all of my animals did better with me holding them than some stranger. That still holds to this day with my daschunds. So bad mouth him if you will but remember those people in his office chose to take their animals to him. You high tech vets - connect the dots!

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    4. Some of the vets responding here are large animal vets. And you don't have to be "high tech" to use sterile technique, or a painkiller.
      You may be grateful he's there - but you might save more animals, and be more grateful, if you had a vet using modern techniques. Might even save some money - as someone pointed out, sometimes there's more of a profit margin for the vet using these outdated techniques or drugs than if it was done correctly.
      The people there probably really have another choice of vets nearby.
      By the way - I am an owner, not a vet. But I've seen good and bad vet care - and that doesn't always correlate with cost. This guy - frighteningly out of date.

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    5. Sounds like someone is jealous to me. He's old school and has over 19000 customers so he must be doing something right in the bankrupt hellhole of Michigan!

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    6. "all you high faluttin vets!" That pretty much says it all for me. I have never heard that phrase used by anyone under 90 years old. Come into the 20th century and see how the real world works, not your dream recollections. It was never that good.

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    7. I was just flipping channels when I came across this show. I was in shock and disgusted. He was removing a lipoma on an obese dog without any moniitoring equipment under IM sedation. No pain meds, no catheter, no endotracheal tube, not even flow by 02! Next I saw him staple shut bite wounds to the neck of a geriatric dog... for goodness sake don't close the holes to allow the bacteria and pus no way out! Then he was attempting to stick a wild bunny with euthanasia solution (not IV guys but in the muscle; we all know it burns like hell when it goes perivascular) I had seen enough. He is not practicing "country vet" medicine he is hurting animals!!! I will write Nat Geo with my opinion.
      Yes, I work in a very large, very famous animal hospital in NYC. No, I am not a snob. This man needs to retire at the least; personally I think he should loose his license.

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    8. Dr. Pol may be old fashioned in some of his techniques, but if the electricity went out who'd still be able to function & run business as usual? Dr. Pol is a great vet and I've never seen him or his office staff spend money needlessly to feel better in case an emergency occurs! They know veterinarian medicine and run his business very proficiently! They do whats nessessary to treat each animal patient as humanely and efficiently as possible. They are very professional and approachable to each pet owner. If an emergency does occur, they keep level headed & face it as it comes. Not spending needless money even if it's a few extra dollars & cents taking precautions on what could happen before it does happen, but usually don't! That's why he's popular and on TV!!!The people complaining are simply jealous! Don't be haters!

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    9. What do you base all that on? There have been many comments, multiple examples, of how he does not do what's necessary. They've been disciplined for incompetance and negligence. How do you know what he spends? In fact, as vets have written, often a vet would make more profit on sub-standard medicine than by doing it right. He's on TV because his son is in the industry, and he's popular because he's colorful and people don't know any better.

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    10. ~The story of Myloh~

      regretavet.blogspot.com

      www.facebook.com/regretavet

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    11. It takes a VERY special person to do this work.I've seen my sister do things to animals (vet tech for 25 yrs) that I could NEVER do in a million years. NO ONE - vET OR OTHERWISE, CAN SAY THEY'VE SAVED EVERYONE & HAS NOT MADE MISTAKES. And if you say these are preventable mistakes-aren't they all? 19,000 pts- 2 vets.. can anyone tell me if this is an average amount of customers? Look fwd to 2nd season (hopefully) & just to add salt to this unnecessary wound. Im quite sure we hv other issues in this country that so need to be addressed other than Dr. Pol...Rock on Jan:)

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    12. Chairman Pete - bankrupt hellhole of Michigan? That's a little extreme considering Michigan ranks #22 in per capita income, not #50 (US Census). Dr Pol isn't practicing in a third world country and as many have pointed out, sanitation & pain meds are cheap. I worked as a vet tech for a rural vet who provides quality affordable care. My boss understood our clients weren't made of money and didn't insist that the latest state-of-the-art treatment was the only option. Something to consider when saying "old school" & cheaper is better - my boss went on vacation and left the practice in the hands of a retired vet who refused to use any of our newer drugs or equipment. Everything was "too expensive" He wouldn't even offer the newer tests, treatments, or drugs as an option to clients that I know would have been more than willing to pay for them. Consequently animals were returning, still sick, who might have better had they been treated properly in the first place. If the treatment of your pet was cheaper but didn't work, you've thrown your money away. Ideally you find a vet who is skilled & compassionate, willing to continue to learn, but also understands financial reality.

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    13. How stupid even to discuss this matter. Look on the health liscense search, for medical doctors and see how humans are treated. You can't find an MD to day who has 1/16 of the intelligence of Dr. Pol. You sound like a complete winer. Dr. Pol jumps right in and there is a reason, he is old school where they had intelligence and to think he knows the in's and out of all the animals. Most MD's today wouldn't know how to DX a wart and would say they would need to take a biopsy. We live in a world full of greed. Dr. Pol knows what is like to see's these poor suckers who love these animals and wants to give them the best care, when they don't have Mercedes Benz budgets.

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  2. Why would the AVMA care? Honestly, I am disappointed in our appointed governing body and expect nothing from them on this. I would be overjoyed if they addressed the issue.

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  3. I think that the vet school that farms students out to him should watch the show. They need to talk with their students about what is going on there. He might be nice, but so are a ton of vets that bother to step into this century. I know several Dr. Pol-types in the area around me. I even worked for some...people that don't understand the medications that they use and when to use them. Talk about cheap...looking this stuff up rarely costs much. Keeping up costs time and can usually be gained at free association meetings. There are veterinary websites (DVM360, The Vet's Corner) that are free.

    I cannot speak to his large animal medicine per se, but if someone did an epidural or joint infusion in my horse and they didn't bother to scrub or wear gloves, they would be wearing my foot in their ass while they waiting on the board complaint.

    I feel sorry for the owners, though it seems like most either don't care or just think that it is normal or acceptable (remember the difference between normal and common!). However, I feel the worst for those poor animals that are not managed with pain medication. I have had surgery and I know what it feels like.

    Some people don't think that babies or animals have a sophisticated enough neuro system to feel pain. They are wrong. The newer studies that investigate outcomes between pediatric/infant patients that have their pain managed when they are going through surgery are much better. And for people that don't believe animals feel pain, they need to understand that animals do feel pain, they just don't always show it. Some will literally hide it and act normal when they know they are being watched.

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  4. Even back in the 70s, I had gas anesthesia & cap/gown/mask & sterile packs. We also had access to morphine. IV fluids were available too. We didn't have most of the monitors used today. Well an EKG could be found.
    Sad commentary that this show is being used to show what we do today. Makes me even grumpier.

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    1. It means a lot to me that the vet who tends to my animals runs an AAHA accredited clinic and uses the modern practices available. My animals, and their health, is very important to me and I'm heartened to know how much vets care, but saddened at the ignorance and rudeness you deal with so often. I'm happy to read this blog and learn ways to let our vet know how much we appreciate her knowledge and caring.

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  5. I have never watched this and probably won't because 1) I really don't want to punch through my TV and 2) Michigan isn't very far from where I am...

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    1. This is all horseshit dude. Don't believe everything you read on the internet. Dr. Pol is an amazing vet with years of knowledge and experience over some of these vet's whining on blogspot to get noticed.

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  6. I don't feel it's the AVMA's job to address this issue, other than the damage that the show is doing to the perceptions of veterinarians across the country. (The AVMA and their failure towards their members is a whole 'nother issue.)

    WHY is the State of Michigan allowing him to retain his license? Most states require an owner to file a complaint, then the investigation will primarily rely on the owner's perception of what happened and the veterinarian's medical record. Here we have a television camera providing a visual medical record. Steroids for shock with no fluid support? Orthopedic surgery with no intubation? This is unacceptable. The Michigan Veterinary Licensing Board should be ashamed to allow this man to continue to practice medicine.

    Attention owners - this is NOT acceptable medicine. Your pet deserves better.

    Boycott the show. Boycott Nat Geo. Send in your opinion. comments@natgeochannel.com

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    1. This was a very popular thread on VIN, and even the AVMA chimed in there but declined to do anything. I'm surprised the state board hasn't stepped in, though I'm not sure if anyone who lives in that state has reported Dr. Pol.

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    2. I think he may have some pending board complaints.

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  7. I think that if Nat Geo continues airing this crap, they should also air a similar human style show. Something where humans are operated on without analgesia or appropriate anesthesia. No use of supportive care or decent monitoring, as well. As I sit here scratching my head of where such a show could be filmed, I am thinking about Nazi war camps. I think that that is the last time humans got this quality of care and that it was caught on film. Come on Nat Geo, be fair and quit trying to DEVALUE an entire profession.

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    1. I think you are sell bitter and mad you font have a show. He is the best Dr. He cares about the paitent and the owner. I have had my fill of your kind of Doctor. You would kill the family pet because the owner couldn't pay the $200 you would charge for the $10.00 shot. I took my cat to a Dr like you and you killed her because I couldn't pay the 2k to save her. I wish to this day I wish there was a Dr like Pol my cat would be alive. So all you want us money.

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    2. How do you people know what Dr. Pol charges? I've never seen his charges discussed. He has a pretty nice house, perhaps he charges plenty.
      Vets, like everyone else, want to get paid for their work - yes. Otherwise they can't pay their mortgage, their grocery bill, etc. You don't blame anyone else who does work for wanting to get paid for it.
      Responsible owners have some money set aside for emergencies - it is your job to care for your animal, not someone elses.
      I am an owner, not a vet.

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    3. Here's an idea, don't get a pet if you DON'T HAVE MONEY to afford a pet! It's kind of funny that pets get sick just like humans! They have beating hearts that get heart disease, and blood runs through them, so they could get a blood disorder. They eat anything and can get sick from that, diseases, parasites, obstructions. When u feed them too much and feed them human food (they make pet food....that's weird!!!!) they can get pancreatitis, their stomachs can flip on them, huh...(gasp) they get diabetes like humans. Who woulda thunk?! Oh they have vaccines to prevent diseases, and spay and neutering them helps keep populations of unwanted animals down and prevents diseases too! It's strange though, that they don't talk!!!! And you expect us to cure your dog by just looking at it. Nope, sorry we aren't Dolittle here, sometimes we need to run bloodwork and X-rays to help diagnose a problem. And yup that does cost money. NOTHING IS FREE! I don't go into your work demanding free services. I wish all doctors were millionaires who could give away free medicine. But unfortunately there is a little thing called bills, and mortgages, and paying a staff and for equipment in the hospital. Yeah they paid for that chair you sit on in the waiting room and the table and the computers and the blood machines and X-rays machine and everything else that's in the building. The building didn't come equipped with all of that. Oh and as a vet tech, I like to,get paid too. I have a mortgage too and a car note and I want to be warm in the winter. Oh and not to mention, we are probably still paying off school debt, cause that wasn't cheap!
      So to sum it up, we are not killing your pets, your neglect is. Do your research before getting a pet because its not just about feeding them and giving them water. They are like children, except they like pooping outside or in litter boxes. They are expensive!
      The whole quote of " I do it for the money" has been said by no vet/vet tech ever. Do your research on how long they go to school, the amount they paid for school and then the amount they get paid to practice and compare that to a human doctor or accountant or nurse.

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    4. Sorry for any of my incorrect grammar. A I correct myself about bloat (where a dog stomachs can flip), this can happen for many reasons, not from feeding human food. I was just very mad at people who do not take responsibility for their own actions.

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  8. I have been a vet tech for almost 34 years now, I've watched the advances in veterinary medicine with great joy, we saved a lot of patients with the old MASH type protocols, but we save even more now. The only problem I have is with those who get so dependent on the fancy equipment that they are at a loss when a drug, pump, or fancy piece of equipment is unavailable. Guys, the name of the game is improvise when you must, adapt as fast as you can, and hire people whose training is up to date. If I had ever worked for a vet like this, I would have quit, reported him /her to the AVMA, & then picketed his office if need be. Any way we can write or e-mail this guy?

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  9. I'm from Canada, but the clips I've seen from the show are appalling. The one that has stuck in my mind was a pair of coonhounds that came in from quill removal. The dogs appeared to be either heavily sedated or anesthetised, no monitoring equipment whatsoever, and when they were done they loaded the dogs into the back of the owner's pickup truck while they were still out. I can't fathom why anyone would think it would be appropriate to allow an animal to recover from ANY procedure in the back of a truck (and not secured in a crate or at least tied down).

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    1. that was the first episode i saw, and even my husband was asking why any vet in his right mind would send a dog home THAT heavily sedated, and allow the owner to just plunk then in the back of the truck and ship them off!! AWFUL.
      the episod ei watche dtonight, he had a boston terr. HBC, eye was completely proptosed. he gave him his 'magic injectable anesthetic' and PERFORMED AN ENUCLEATION WITH MINIMAL STERILE EQUIPMENT and NO ENDOTRACHAEL TUBE IN PLACE...HELLO?!?! he's a BRACHIOCEPHALIC!! maybe you wanna SECURE AN AIRWAY?!? MONITOR HIM UNDER ANESTHESIA?!?! the poor dog looked to be in so much pain the following day when he went home- i feel so bad for the animals in his care.

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    2. As a prior Vet Tech from 1985-1996 in and around Detroit (no cracks about my hometown please), I too was unhappy when I saw that episode. In my career I worked at a chain hospital, a small animal hospital with an doctor from Mississippi, and finally at a specialty referral hospital for an orthopedic surgeon. I've pretty much seen it all, from no-frills inexpensive to state of the art clinics. On the episode with the dogs with the quills, I did question why they didn't receive fluid therapy while under, but I really wondered why they didn't get a drug that could be reversed in the first place. Since they were sedated why on earth were they not kept under doctor supervision until they were awake? On another episode where Dr. Pol's clients had sled dogs, remember that one? The owners "loved their dogs', but when Dr. Pol asked them when the last time they were heartworm tested their response was...about 2 years or so. What??? As their vet he should have known the answer, but ok, whatever. I do understand that Nat Geo has total control of what is aired and what is not. They are in charge. Consider Cesar Millan and The Dog Whisperer. He basically had no say it the show, contrary to what viewers may think. I must admit I found this site by accident, but I did enjoy reading what people have had to say.

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  10. If National Geographic orders up more episodes, I hope they air the one where a sedated animal with inadequate pain control mauls the owner who is providing restraint. It could be a mini-series featuring the client's consults with a trio of professionals: part one - Veterinarian; part two - ER Physician; part three - Attorney. I hope they include the part where the client sues National Geographic, which would attract a large audience of cheering veterinarians. Sweeps week possibilities are endless.

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  11. I mentioned pain relief in another comment on another post. Some many vets do procedures without any sort of relief. I'm thinking more along the lines of farm animas, admittedly. Castrations are just a snip and back out in the field you go. It makes me wince/cringe/sad and a whole lot of other unnecessary emotions! I've had a fish die of depression (seriously.). How can anyone say animals don't feel anything.
    My mum'll be getting her horse castrated. If her vet doesn't administer pain meds and I'm there, I might just kick him in the groin and see how he feels about that. On the other hand, after reading the previous blog about the 'box', I'm going to send my vet a thank you card for caring about my beaten-up chick :-)

    On another note, here in the UK, for a while, there was a tv show called The Bionic Vet. He did all sorts of cool stuff to save 'unsaveable' pets. On the show, pets often came in that was referred by another vet. I also miss Animal Hospital with Rolf Harris. My memory tells me that was a good show.

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  12. I watched this exactly episode last night, here in Brazil, and made exactly the same observations you did.

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  13. I watched this butcher enucleate an eye and the dog wasn't even intubated!
    He then diagnosed a case of demodex with a blood smear NOT a skin scrape. He proceeded to tell the audience and the owner that the mite lived in the lymph nodes and was so hard to get rid of he often had to euthanize any dog with this mite. I was shocked he didn't treat with used crankcase oil or creosote. But a CBC showed the dog had an infection which was causing the horrible smell and since it was the infection that was the culprit Dr Pol would be able to save this dog. The owner was ecstatic and pointed out how little Dr Pol charged leaving the clear impression the rest of us were money grubbing scum

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    1. We had a local vet charge 10,000.00 dollars for a puppy who died from an impaled khish kabob. The puppy died. I can't believe that anyone would demand that kind of money. I don't have animals because a fool and his money soon part. I will give my money to help the elderly.

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  14. saw an episode tonight where he was discussing hoiw 'after all these years you learn how to read an animal'...one of his techs was standing behind a rottweiler how was sitting, and the dog was facing him. the dog was OBVIOUSLY SCARED SHITLESS. he 'let her sniff his hand', and he curled her lip- did i mention he was looming over her? because he was totally loomign over her head and looking down on her. not intimidating at ALL. he tried to place a muzzle ONCE- not well, either...he came at her from the FRONT and tried to flip in down over her nose...ONCE. she snapped (duh), and he said 'no. i cannot examine this animal. she is too aggressive. tell the owners i'm sorry, but i cannot examine this animal- IT'S NOT MY FAULT SHE'S STUPID."... Let me say that again... "it's NOT MY FAULT she's STUPID"... YOUR'E DENYING A SCARED ANIMAL MEDICAL CARE BECAUSE SHE'S SCARED, AND YOU'RE BLAMING HER FOR BEING STUPID?! you sir are an asshat. the dog is SCARED. i'm not saying he should get hurt, but dont' blame the DOG for being STUPID when it's not her FAULT. a frightened animal is not a dumb one, and they SHOULD be treated cautiously, but they should also have the right to be TREATED. get a damn muzzle on the dog PROPERLY, then do her exam. friggin' idiot.

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    1. sorry for all the typing errors- i'm a grammar nazi usually, but i was SO PISSED typing this that i forgot my manners :)

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  15. Its a shame nat geo is hyping this show up so much. I was actually intrigued to watch it. When i did the worse ones for me were the mauled puppy & the coon hounds thrown in a pickup truck :( im not saying its an excuse at all but im sure hes old & obv. Set in his ways. I hope if there are techniques hes using that are inhuman (looks it) then hopefully the right authorities will step in. Maybe make him go to some present day courses or work with a more knowledgable vet or just stick with large animal vet med & not the other cases

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  16. He is in a rural area, he runs his practice from what I could tell on the run, from farm to farm. I learned so much last night watching him. It reminded me of the old MASH unit set ups, the use of anesthesia and even some antibiotics could also equal that to a human being, thinking about it, to much of a "so called good thing could equal serious complications, Physical Therapy and Surgical Patients know this all to well" like I do. I am not siding with anyone here, what I am saying is this, my Doctor who is Wonderful, went to study Medicine at University of Florida, all the specialist our son sees, I see on the walls of they're offices more of the same, Veterinarian Medicine Degree. It all ties into the same theory.
    We all have preferences, if you live in a city, you have the ability to get the great health care for your animal(s), unlike our family, we can not afford it, would I take my sweet furry baby Slinky to Doc Pol if I had to, sure would, why not?? In the old days, where there were No Doctors, People would go to the Veterinarians or Root Doctors. Because they knew the caliber of care they would receive, from birthing babies to all points in between.
    I agree I was shocked at the lack of anesthesia, but I get a better understanding as to why and the type of animal. It was noted last night on three of his cases, the two dogs with Porcupine quills a dogs tail, and one other case, as well as the case of the cow that had a dead fetus rotting in her she was given antibiotics. That in turn made the cow not "Green Sealed". for that part, I do not care, the cow was out of her misery, and in the end she did come out good.
    It bothers me that fingers pointed to the vet is not good, lets take a look at the owners, Really... Hound Dogs should be leashed, Rural or Not, if you know that animals in the area could hurt them, and Hounds are notorious for the chase and hunt,, do not let them run. If you see your Farm Animal in distress, and you can Take the animal via Transport safely, do so immediately, do Not wait till the last minute... honestly, would you do that with your children.. I think Not. So, we learned much, it was incredible to see this man in action. I am not here to judge by any means, lest I be judged, but what I am saying is this.. There is always a middle ground somewhere.
    Tabby

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  17. This is the reason vets around the country cringe at being recorded, quoted or interviewed. The criticism from members of their own field! He uses old school techniques, because he is an old veterinarian. Don't act like he is the only old vet practicing this way. Recognized him for the fact he stepped out on a limb and opened his practice to public scrutiny. To a trained ear, one can hear what meds he is dispensing. I bet you wouldn't do that. Bravo Dr. Pol! Bravo!

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    1. You are one intelligent guy and I don't even own an animal because I have seen my idiot relatives spend more money on their animals, then they would for their own families.

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  18. I am not a vet but I have seen vets in my area, I'm sorry he is pretty good. I believe animals should be treated humanely and all but some of you posters sound like you love dogs and cats more than people. I am sorry it really bothers me to see some people treat animals like they were people, they are not. Just look at all the stuff for sale at pet stores that trick us in thinking our pets need them. Do they need cookies that look like human cookies, do they need a fancy sweater?

    While Dr Pol may seem old fashioned, I come away watching the show believing he is a competent and caring vet, for both the animal and their owners.

    I have seen very few good vets in my area, NYC. Take a dog in for shots and they want to run a million other tests. Take a dog in for a potential problem, after two minutes, vet says there's nothing wrong. Take a weight and charge nan examination fee. I don't see anything fancy on the show, just an old man trying to do his best to save as many animals lives as possible and caring about the wallets of their owners. I have NOT found that anywhere else. first thing the receptionist says on the phone each time I call is if this an emergency there will be an extra fee.

    So I believe dr pol makes me want to be a vet more than all those with the fancy equipment.

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  19. I agree that Dr. Pol may not seem practical to most high tech vets but he does deal with the working class American. I believe that when a person is that skilled in his work, he does not need high tech equipment to tell him what is going on. After all those years, I do believe he knows what he is doing. Also, how many of you are going from farm to farm, or making house calls with monitoring machines? He realizes the more equipment, the more expensive things will be. I love all animals and do want them all to get the best care, but the most important thing is the job gets done and the animal is no longer in pain. I know one thing for sure, if the electricity goes out Dr. Pol can still examine your animal. If the electricity went out on all these modern vets, they would run around like a chicken with no head. HOORAY DR. POL!!!

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    1. As one who practices out on farms, sometimes by flashlight or truck headlights, I must say you are completely ignorant of modern large animal medicine.

      My take on the TV show was that it doesn't matter if the power is on or off while Dr. Pol is examining your animal because he won't be able to provide an accurate diagnosis, regardless. Much of what he tells his clients is baloney, but he sincerely believes what he's saying. That's why it's good the Board of Veterinary Medicine put him on probation, and assessed a fine.

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  20. I am currently a vet tech student in NY while working in an animal practice. From working at my practice Dr Pol's ways are definitely outdated, but after taking a large animal class and having to be on a farm for two weeks we all learned how different large animal medicine is. Most of their surgeries are done in the field with minimum sterility in mind since they most places can't accommodate a cow or horse in their OR. Not saying that this is the way everything should be done, but you have to be able to see this from a different perspective because not everything is so cut and dry.

    That being said I just cringed through an episode where he bare handedly rectaled a heifer to then remove her rotting deceased fetus.

    For the most part though, the basics of what i have been learning in my program seem to be the same as to what he preaches. You don't have to be extremely expensive or have the most high tech equipment to be a good veterinarian.

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  21. Not everyone runs a clinic or practice in the same way. Not everyone does everything by the book. People do things wrong. Are you going to come out to a farm with an O2 tank ready? Not all major surgeries need anesthesia. I've had a heart ablation where I was awake the entire time. I felt the entire thing, had no pain medication. I actual enjoy the show. I grew up on a pig farm. I've seen vets work. I've also seen vets charge ridiculous fees like a discipline fee. He should take psi precaution. Not only for his personal safety but for other pts.

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  22. I love the show & Dr Pol.The network should bring in a new Vet that will help and appease the viewers or you can make Dr. Brenda be the one to do some of calls using modern treatments. The AVMA should sit down with NetGeo.

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  23. If you look on the Michigan board site, Dr. Pol has been disciplined this past May - fined and is on probation. "Negligence - incompetance" That about sums it up.

    http://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/lara_dar_042712_388373_7.pdf

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  24. Love Dr. Pol.

    Old School.. He just gets it done.

    Yes it was heartbreaking to hear that the puppy died. If that dog's mother killed it (the girl said "my female") then I think he should have advised her to put down that female, but I'm not a vet.

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  25. I suppose none of you have ever heard of editing?

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  26. Old school in current times = negligence and incompetance. He doesn't get it done, that is the point. Animals are dying, in pain, that don't need to. That puppy very well could have had a good chance, with modern competant veterinary care.

    Yes, I've heard of editing. Sure, something could have been done that we didn't see. But what we ARE seeing is what it is, no editing changes that. And it isn't good.

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  27. I'm glad that some vets are posting on this topic. Although I am not a vet, I was confused by the lack of any sterile procedures, intubation or IV catheteriation of small animals on this show.

    Some comments here in support of Dr. Pols methods claim that it is difficult to use these methods on farm calls with large animals, but that isn't the issue here. Some others are claiming that these methods are 'high tech' or expensive when the fact is that these methods have been around for some time and are relatively cheap to implement. I will also note that I live in a rural area and would not allow any vet to practice these 'old school' methods on any animal.

    Yet, I am most appalled about the quality of care that these animals receive in terms of pain, recovery and survival.

    One question for the vets out there that have seen this show, is the injection he is using on small animals when performing surgical procedures a paralytic or a sedative? If it is a paralytic does the animal feel pai during these procedures??

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  28. I'm not a vet, but I'm pretty sure that is a sedative he's using. I may criticize him, but I can't imagine he'd use a paralytic instead of sedative. Whether or not the pain control is adequate I don't know, but they animals usually look pretty much out. Except for some of the farm animals of course.

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  29. A sarcastic commentary for money grubbing vets fed up with the American public? #1 Don't need or want money grubbing vets. $200 for a $5 product huh? Hmmm....#2 Fed up with the American public? Nice one! Who are you so we can petition the Board and tell them you need to lose your license. And You complain about Dr. Pol? I Looove old fashioned Drs. They care about the American public, and don't money grub!

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  30. Lisa, you do not understand - many things that he appears to not do correctly, wouldn't cost any more to DO correctly. Pain medicine is pennies. Sterile technique is basically free. Vets are suposed to care first of all about animal welfare. The arguments about Dr. Pol are not about money. And btw, I'm a client, not a vet.

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  31. Take a look at some of his clientele, and you can tell they wouldn't know quality animal care if they fell over it. Just saw an episode where a client attempted to castrate a young steer with a rubber band and gangrene had set in. Another lost her "beloved" horse-a member of her family- to encephalitis...she hadn't vaccinated any of her horses in several years. Money-grubbing vets? Seems there is an over abundance of money-grubbing farmers and ranchers looking to cut corners and costs in animal healthcare. If these people can't afford to raise animals correctly, they should find a new line of work.

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    1. I watched a episode of dirtiest job a they used the rubber band castration on a farm.I remember watching a documentary on ranching and the cowboys castrated calves when branding them at the same time.Thats just the way it is done on ranches

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  32. Re. the money-grubbing - I think most people want to get paid for their work - that's why they have jobs. Vets are no different.
    Horrifying as that calf rubber band episode was, I seemed to remember something about this method, and I looked it up. Happened to find a Canadian site, but it was the department of ag or some similar. That is apparently a common way to do it, and has some advantages over other methods, including surgical castration. So while it went horrifically wrong, it appears that the client was perhaps not doing anything unusual or inappropriate, other than the calf perhaps should have been younger, which he admitted.
    I did wonder why none of those horses had been vaccinated - did she decline to do it? Had Dr. Pol recommended it? We have no idea.

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  33. Oh by the way, did anyone catch the comment made by his son in this year's series - something to the effect that he might not be doing things they way vet schools teach now, but newer isn't always better? aaaargh. Well why having advances in veterinary medicine I suppose, or even human medicine?

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  34. And on the last lovely episode Dr. Brenda saw a large dog who had his head cought in a beaver (or something) trap. Poor dog was all swollen and obviously extremely painful - couldn't open it's mouth at all. She did xray it, bones were ok. Well here's one that didn't get steroids anyway - he just got some nsaids. She basically said he'd have "a few days of pain and soreness". Great. No opioids, no tramadol, just some nsaids. Poor dog.
    And by the way, those who defend all the 'old school' medicine - those are very cheap drugs I'm talking about, cheaper than the nsaids. I do think the nsaids are good btw, but imo he need more than that, in addition.

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  35. I have lived in both rural and urban areas, and have had animals of all sizes for 40+ years. I think we all are very thankful for the medical advances in Vet medicine, but like some of the posters here those advances are abused (maybe not intentionally) by the ‘modern’ Vets. However, the same can be said about ‘human’ medicine. In the ‘old days’ you could go to the Dr for a pill when you had a cold, nowadays you have to go through X-Rays and a bunch of tests to get the same pill. Cost old days <$100, nowadays >$1000. One thing Vets have to remember is animals (normally) don’t have insurance to pay for all the ‘new’ medical advances.
    So let’s bring this post back to where most of the posts here are directed – small animals…cats and dogs. I currently live in an area where (with a bit of a drive) I have access to a surgical group that is on par with the Mayo clinic (latest equipment (e.g. hydrotherapy, blood hydrolysis) and therapies (e.g. chemo, etc)), a 24 hour ER, and a local Vet. To walk in the door and say HI to a Vet (no treatment) at the ER costs $350, at the ‘Mayo’ $500, and at the Vet $60. Side note – I don’t go to the ER anymore! I brought a dog in badly injured and bleeding profusely. After spending 45 min in the waiting room to see a Vet (and they sent a maintenance man out twice to mop the blood off the floor) her condition was so visibly dire that it took me and other waiting customers complaining that she was going to bleed out in the waiting room before they told me to go to the ‘Mayo Clinic’ – a clinic I didn’t even know existed at the time - Thank You Modern ER Medicine!
    For most pet owners (cats and dogs) they are a member of our family and we will do anything to make them better. So here’s a true story that has unfolded over the last 6-8 weeks. First dog (State of the Art Medicine) - a Lab that collapsed and I took her to the ‘Mayo’. Over the next 3 weeks she had numerous tests, biopsies, X-Rays, ICU for 5 days just to be released to me with 15 horse-size pills that she needed to take twice daily to build her up for surgery (which would require a CT scan and surgical consultation – an additional $2500). Diagnosis – pneumonia (cured in the ICU) and a liver mass. Age of dog – 15yrs, she died at home within 2 weeks and two more visits to the Mayo. Cost $8000+ (without the consult and CT).
    Second dog (local Vet) – mass removed from rear end (dog diagnosed with Vestibular by the ‘Mayo’ 1 yr ago). Wound refused to heal resulting in additional surgeries. Vet (has common sense of Dr Pol, but half his age – aka a ‘modern’ Vet trained by a Dr Pol) who was honest with me and told me he didn’t have high hopes of the wound ever closing, the dogs condition was declining (aka unable to walk on his own), and problems other than the abscess were at work. Age of dog 14 yrs, cost <$800, and the dog was put down.
    Yes, miracles can be performed by ‘modern’ medicine, and Yes – Vets (both modern and old school) want to do everything they can to treat our sick animals. BUT ‘old school’ Vets know how to build a trusting relationship with their clients and not treat them like a business, and ‘old school’ Vets know how tell their clients both good and bad news, and guide them into making the ‘best’ decision for their animals even though they know their clients hearts will break. Modern medicine is wonderful, but you have to know when to say enough is enough – new is not always better. My modern/’old school’ Vet delivered the news to me with a tear in his eye and his voice cracking like mine. Bless the ‘old school’ Vets, and YES I would become a customer of Dr Pol without reservation if I lived in the area of his practice!

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  36. There are plenty of both old and new vets that have good relationships with their clients. And some of the nicest, kindest, care I've received has been at a vet school. I can also say the same about a small local clinic.
    But the point I think some people are missing is - good, modern, care isn't always expensive. Some of the things he's doing, I believe, are causing these animals unnecessary pain. Or animals to die that could have been saved. For pennies.
    The treatments I'm talking about aren't MRI's, or anything else that costs much.
    Giving fluids to a puppy in shock probably costs around $10.
    Morphine is literally pennies.
    Tramadol (another painkiller) is pennies.
    Using some appropriate flush to rinse out an abscess, rather than peroxide (which has been known for ages to inhibit healing). Plain 'ol (dirt cheap) saline would probably have been better.
    No one here is talking about ultra-modern, expensive treatments. We're talking about basic life-saving treatments, and reasonable pain control. It wouldn't cost any more to do these things - in some cases it might cost less.
    And those of us that love our animals don't want them to suffer, or die, needlessly. From what I've seen on that show, I belive some of those animals likely did.

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    1. I've read lots of articles recommending peroxide to flush wounds initially. They weren't recommended for long term use in wound treatment since it can inhibit healing. I'm sure there are many opinions both ways so it isn't "wrong", implying negligent, to use peroxide for initial flushing.

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  37. There are many things I agree with in this article, I've been a vet tech for over 11 years, worked for specialists with high tech equipment, as well as 1 Dr that practiced similar to Dr pol (although he did use pain meds and fluids, pulse ox, etc) but I was appalled then as well. I do know there are other shows on animal planet that show up to date veterinary medicine. So I know there are people that can afford it and are aware of it, then there are others that don't know any better or can afford better. I agree it's sad and hard to watch, so in that case....change the channel. But others know it's part of life, and the clients of Dr pol are happy. He is old and old school, it exists! Many doctors are this way, and always will be.

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  38. Well they may not stay in practice, Dr. Pol has been disciplined and is on probation. You can practice decent medicine without being high tech. But veterinarians (and human doctors) are responsible for staying current. Old vets aren't held to a lower standard than young vets really.
    For all these people who say they would take their animal to Dr. Pol - would you take your child to a doctor who was on probation, because the licensing board disciplined him for 'Negligance - incompetance'?

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    1. Not only has Dr. Pol been disciplined, so have BOTH of his associates.

      I'm a large animal veterinarian. I practice in a rural community. I carry sterile gloves and IV fluids, among other useful items. My former partner (he's now semi-retired) graduated from vet school within a year of Dr. Pol, and is one of the smartest and most up-to-date veterinarians I know. Older veterinarians are definitely not held to a different standard.

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    2. You are full of horseshit Jenna, no one believes you hippie. Leave Dr. Pol alone.

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  39. Don't leave out the episode where he was called for a horse that couldn't stand up. He just looked at it and decided there was some sort of swelling in the spine or something and gave it anti-inflammitory medication then left it. It died by morning because it had internal bleeding. I'm no vet but if a horse can't stand then something is seriously wrong and a horse that can't stand is at at serious risk of damage to its organs just because it can't stand. They can lay down for short periods of time but not for more then an hour or two at a time. The animals weight puts pressure on its internal organs and the longer it stays down the more damage is done. There's a reason why horses sleep mostly standing up. The animal might have been saved if taken in to the clinic and properly looked at. You can't make a diagnosis on an internal problem by just looking at the animal.

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  40. Oh yes, that horse. With it's head hanging on the ground as it lay there, and leg stuck out at a funny angle. That he moved in the bucket of a loader. It got a shot of steroids too. Steroids fix everything, don'tcha know. I think he said something about torn femoral artery later if I remember correctly? I wonder if it was like that, or happened in the loader?

    I was wondering about the last episode also. Dr. Brenda sees an anorexic vomiting dog that chewed a baseball, xray shows something big and round that shouldn't be there. Barium study doesn't find an obstruction. So she is going to send the dog home with medication for the vomiting. Okaaaay.... but what is the big round thing? Never found out, the dog dropped dead in the clinic that afternoon. Something about diarrhea. Guess it wasn't ready to go home (poor dog).

    The really sad part about all of this, in addition to the poor animals and their owners, is that so much of the public thinks this kind of medicine is ok, and National Geographic is fostering that attitude. That it's "old school" and modern vets are ripping them off. And who even says Dr. Pol is cheap? We have no idea what he charges.

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    1. I'm still crying about the episode where "Blacky" died after having the barium exam. Of what did he die??? I didn't see any fluids being administered to him. He was vomiting, but didn't get diarrhea until after the barium exam. Did he die of dehydration? I think most of us have gotten the call "that no vet wants to make and no pet owner wants to get." My heart breaks for Blacky's owner who never got a chance to say good-bye.

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  41. We don't know what was wrong with that dog. Neither did they apparently. The vet saw a large round thing on xray that didn't belong there, but apparently never figured out what it was. And didn't seem to be making any further efefort to find out what it was.
    Since there was no film of him much after the study, we have no idea if the dog needed fluids, was getting fluids, or if he was even being monitored, since she was intending to send him home.

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  42. Everyone who is praising Dr. Pol for not being a "typical" money grubbing veterinarian doesn't realize that cheapo, slipshod medicine is actually much more profitable than modern, quality medicine. Consider: profit = (cost paid by client) minus (cost of materials/services used)

    For example, if cost paid by client = $100 but materials were only $5, that's a better profit margin than a bill to the client of $250 with cost of materials $175. Corticosteroids and B vitamins are dirt cheap, and so is not using sterile technique, monitoring or diagnostic equipment or trained staff.

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  43. People can always find something to criticize. Good grief! The man has had an enormously successful vet practice for years. I suppose all nay-sayers believe his clients to just be 'dumb farmers' who are all ignorant to sufficient animal care. A curious view considering a farmer's living is based on the health of his/her animals. Leave the man alone. Some of us actually admire the relationship that he has with the animals, their owners, and his community in general.

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    1. This is the problem: most people do not know whether their veterinarian is practicing good or bad medicine. They must rely upon whether their animal gets better or worse, and perhaps more important, whether they think the money they spent was worthwhile. Since most patients get better no matter what the veterinarian does or does not do (fact), people decide whether the veterinarian is good based upon his personality and bedside manner.

      Pol is practicing the medicine he learned when he graduated from veterinary school in the early 1970s. In contrast, one of my closest friends is a veterinarian who also graduated in the early 1970s and has also spent his entire career in large animal medicine. He practices current, 2012 medicine (not in academia, BTW). Similarly, I graduated over ten years ago, and I make an honest attempt to follow my friend's example. Some days it's hard to look up that new diagnostic test or remember to stock that useful pharmaceutical or recall those recently-discovered differentials, but I try. I never want to be like Dr. Pol, and he is not alone, believe me.

      The difference between Dr. Pol and the veterinarians who practice like him is that Pol has a television show. To the public, he is the face of rural veterinary medicine. That's disturbing, and it makes my job, which includes a sizable component of client education, much more difficult.

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    2. Shut up. Dr. Pol is still better than you.

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  44. Is this a joke? At any point did you attempt to allow the good Dr the opportunity to provide any actual facts about his methods of practice? I did not see anything referencing this! I appreciate your passion for animals!! If you really do intend to educate consumers then you may want to provide them with all the info.

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    1. No, this is no joke. The facts have been evaluated by the Michigan state board of veterinary medicine, and Pol has been found negligent & incompetent. You can read more about the specifics of the case they found he handled incompetently here: http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm/Veterinary+news/Dr-Pol-reality-TV-veterinarian-fined-and-placed-on/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/791615?contextCategoryId=378 and there is a link to the actual Michigan professional license disciplinary action sheet in our post here: http://vetsbehavingbadly.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-incredible-disciplinary-action.html Of course the board can act only on specific complaints received in writing - hence acting on this one case, although there are many more examples of incompetence that are obvious to even the lay viewer of the television show. I wish this were not the case. I hate to see a colleague in trouble. We are not gloating over him being punished because we feel superior. We are sad for his patients, sad that National Geographic is presenting his type of practice as the standard of care in veterinary medicine in America, sad for his clients who probably don't know better, the whole thing is sad.

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    2. I am a lay viewer, although probably with more veterinary knowledge than some.
      I can see case after case that the treatment (or lack thereof) horrifies me. Animals that I believe suffered, and/or died that might have been saved.
      The mauled puppy, without fluids or painkillers apparently, inappropriately given steroids, who died.
      The horse, moved in a loader, given steroids, and lay there and died.
      Surgical cases that should have had intubation and gas, that didn't.
      Lack of basic sterility.
      Dog whose head had been stuck in a trap, sent home saying it would spend a few days in pain.
      Dogs loaded into the back of a pickup truck, unconscious.
      Flushing an absceses out with peroxide.
      Unconscious dog carried by its ankles and slung into a cage.
      That's right off the top of my head. If I thought for a while, I could probably think of more.
      And other than intubation and proper anesthesia - to do it right in just about all of those cases would not have cost significantly more.
      Vets do not lightly speak out against a colleage. This is like a whole group of physicians speaking out against another physician. The public should think seriously about how much it takes to get that to happen. It has to be really bad.

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  45. I like Dr. Pol. And, for the most part, his type of medicine. He's straight forward and does the basics, quickly and well. Seems the KISS principle is alive and well in his part of the world.

    I also take into account that tv shows are made showing the most drama possible, in the least amount of time. I wonder how many feet of film left out of the show indicated follow-ups, pain meds etc.? How much conversation was edited out of context in order to increase viewership? Do people really believe that what they see on the show is all that went on?? That the one hour show is shot in just one hour?

    It's not as if he's trying to hide anything. They don't show just the soft and fluffy stories, they show the good and the bad. Looks like most of the animals lived and were healthier for it. (I haven't seen the show regarding the puppy, nor have I seen the footage that wasn't used, so I can't venture an educated opinion. I did, however, see local farmer/ranchers credit him with spearheading herd health regimens in their area.)

    I don't know what kind of G/A he uses, but he does use a reversal agent. So even though the animals appear flat out, those in the know realize how quickly those agents act. If I were one of the quill coonhounds, I'd believe I'd prefer that agent to kick in while I was in my own truck, rather than a vet's office. As for leaving right away, did they do that or was it some nifty editing?

    Since the show has been on, I've never been given the impression that it was about vets in general. Indeed, it seems the opposite, that it's about one vet, one practise and how he does things. No insinuation at all that this is how all vets practise medicine.

    The most modern of vet medicine? Nope. But I feel I'd like to have him in my animal's corner. I'd take somebody who's seems a straight-shooter and knows my animals/family over anybody (whether a vet or -my personal favourite- a lay person "who has some veterinary knowledge"- *shudder*)who can apparently not only examine/diagnose/take a full history but also second-guess a vet, all based on a tv show.

    If you don't like Dr. Pol's type of medicine, then don't use him as your vet, plain and simple. For the record, I've been a licensed vet tech for over 20 years, with all the CE that goes along with it. And frankly, I've seen worse from modern vets (including specialists) than I've seen so far on Dr. Pol's show.

    I guess people can find the bad in anything, if they look hard enough. It's too bad that it's usually the ones wearing the tightest haloes and living in the largest of glass houses that tend to look the hardest.

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    1. Vet tech. OK. You'd like the coonhounds to wake up in the back of a truck, instead of the vet's office? Okaaaaaay.
      True, you don't know what I am - and I'm not a vet. But neither are you. But tell me vet tech, just where am I inaccurate?
      If no one, and generally lay people, second guessed vets, there would be no complaints, and no disciplines. Perhaps you have missed the part where all 3 vets in that practice have been disciplined for, among other things, 'negligence-incompetance'.

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    2. Amen-Dr Pohl is great! He fits the needs of his community. I grew up in a rural area with no vet around for counties. My Dad was the local Ag teacher and as close to a vet that we had, he must have learned from the same book as Dr Pohl. Most farmers were grateful for the "no bells" treatment. When a vet practice finally became available to them they couldn't afford their prices. You can think what you want, but I have an appreciation for his "diagnose it from the trenches" approach--Much like the medicine seen on the battlefield! Even if it isn't modern--it is rudimentary--Those farmers aren't state of the art either but they appreciate him.

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    3. So should children in that community get the same quality of treatment? That rural area somehow deserves less? There is a minimum standard of care that vets (and doctors) are required to practice by, and he doesn't.
      As the vets keep posting, lots of decent standard care wouldn't cost any more, or pennies more. And vets might make more profit from the out of date treatments, than current ones.

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    4. There are also plenty of comments from other vets stating the way he practices is common in rural communities where there are few vets. So these rural vets have to do the best they can to cover as many needs as they can!

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    5. @ T: I didn't say you were inaccurate anywhere in my post. You might want to read it again. Most of my comments were directed at how people take the show at face value, with no thoughts of the editing etc. that went into it. Like the coonhounds: was that the actual time lapse? Or did the owner recover the dogs in the truck until they were awake, and then leave? Seems to me that the dogs were standing as the truck drove away. Recovering them with the owner made sense, as the clinic was busy, and the owner could keep a close eye on them. Of course, I'm giving the owner credit for not being a complete idiot.
      As for his disciplines? Make that singular. The only discipline given him by the Michigan state body in over 41 years of practice in the state of Michigan.
      And here is more info on the discipline given to him and another vet at his practise:

      http://news.vin.com/VINNews.aspx?articleId=24580

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  46. >>Seems the KISS principle is alive and well in his part of the world>>

    Actually, while watching this program, I often think: "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." So much of what Pol says is just plain incorrect and demonstrates a lack of comprehension of the underlying principles of medicine.

    Dr. Pol might have been the first veterinarian in the area willing to work on cattle back in the 1970s, but what he does is light years from what modern large animal veterinarians do. One of my friends owns a topflight dairy practice (35 years' experience) and what she does would be virtually unrecognizable to viewers of this television show.

    If you've seen worse, and sadly, I'm sure you have, that's too bad, but those veterinarians aren't on television, are they?

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  47. So much mad jealousy here it's ridiculous. You are Monday morning quarterbacks making judgement calls from your chair in front of a television. LOL

    All Physicians and Veterinarians are 'practicing' medicine. Not one of you can play God, not even The Incredible Dr. Pol.

    As for the litter of pups that were lost, any dog breeder will tell you that it is a heartbreaking endeavor, and sometimes you can lose an entire litter in a very short amount of time. It happens a lot more often than you think, even under the best of circumstances.

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  48. This is nothing but a bunch of hateful rhetoric from folks who believe that 'old school' is for step n' fetch oldtimers and morons, who refuse to 'get with the program.' Am I right?

    I'm not a vet, but I have been a pet owner. And all you people sit there whining and moaning about how bad Pol is. You're assuming that the Board who levied the fine is beyond scrutiny? That they are never wrong in their assessments? Looks like it to me. Look at almost ANY industry today, from medicine to manufacturing to technology to education...everyone is frantic, yes I said FRANTIC...to get rid of the old ways and make it all new.

    Well...anyone with some humility and wisdom will tell you that the oldtimers knew a thing or two about how things work. Dr. Pol is fine by me.

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    1. If you think that animals don't feel pain, and that is fine for a veterinarian to publicly state that animals don't feel pain, and to do painful procedures on them without giving pain medicine, then you are no friend to animals.

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    2. I saw the episode where he mentioned something along the lines of animals don't feel pain, but you gotta remember that there is a language barrier in place and I could tell what he really meant. He basically meant to say that most animals are stoic and do not show pain the way we weak humans do. And, there was never a time that I saw him do a procedure or treatment that might leave an animal feeling pain, that either pre-treated with analgesics or treated post-treatment or both. Again I go back to the " why didn't they choose my practice" belly aching that leaves you only commenting on what you think might be damaging to his credibility than some of the awesome things I have seen him do. He is also a Humanitarian and gives a lot to the people of his community that would not have brought their pets in for care otherwise. I'll bet your Vets have never done that. Might bite into their Cadillac money.

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  49. Wow, some people have wayy too much time on their hands! For all you vets that are complaining, I'd to to see a camera follow you around and see how perfect you are. Just because he does things differently doesn't mean he's wrong. Seems like his 19,000 clients agree with me. People choose to be his clients. If you don't like him don't take your pet there and don't watch his show. And for the lady with the puppies, if she was so concerned she should've had a second opinion sooner. Vets are not God and they are not going to be right everytime. It's sad to see all of the jealous vets out there who don't have half of his experience or skills. I would choose him anyday over any of you and so would his many, many clients. Again, if you don't like him don't watch his show!

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  50. Dr. Pol is our vet for both our Dairy cows and our family pets. I wouldn't dream of going to another vet. He does things "old school" in an "old school" kind of town. He does his job well and he has compassion for animals and their owners.

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  51. I just think that all of you belly aching Vets out there are just mad that you weren't selected to be on the show because you guys have never done anything to be considered "Incredible". So get off your high horses and keep your stuck up noses in your own businesses and turn the TV OFF if you don't like what's being aired. The rest of us think he's "Incredible" and enjoy watching his show.

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  52. And that is what is so unfortunate - that people like you are thinking that such bad and outdated medicine is incredible. I'm not a vet, I have no stake in this at all, other than than being horrified at watching animals suffer. A friend of mine that is a human nurse watched the show, and she too was appalled at some of the outdated things she saw. Would you take your child to a medical practice where most of the doctors had been disciplined, including for 'negligance-incompetance'? Sure, the show is entertaining - too bad they couldn't be entertaining with good medicine also.

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    1. Wow! How do you know whether you or someone's children have been taken to a Physician who's been disciplined? It's public knowledge if you bother to look for it but I'm sure almost no one does check on those things. I've been to many vets who have made mistakes and I could have complained. If I had, I'm confident the regulatory agency would have found them at fault. So I'm sure almost any vet or physician has made a mistake at one time or another. That's happened to me and I quit going to them! Being as the show is broadcasted on national TV, I would think if he were practicing against regulated veterinary standards, he would be investigated and shut down if found guilty of malpractice!

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    2. Personally, if I was going to a doctor I would look them up. But that's me. There is a difference between making a mistake, and a pattern of just not bothering to practice up to date medicine. He was found guilty of negligence-incompetence, and disciplined. They don't usually lose their license the first time they're found guilty of something.
      Perhaps he is being investigated again, perhaps he will get shut down. It takes time.

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    3. What's up to date medicine? One time I had a young MD tell me I had a kidney infection which turned out to be totally inaccurate! She didn't bother to feel where my pain was located then erroneously relied only on vague test results.The next MD who was much, much older, used good old fashioned palpation technique to properly locate my pain then correctly ordered appropriate lab work to clearly confirm what was going on so I could get proper treatment! So perhaps Dr Pol MAY have been at fault for one incident! Perhaps he's practicing appropriate veterinary care for the local clientele! Perhaps his techniques are a matter of opinion and not a violation of any regulated standard! Perhaps every veterinarian who's ever practiced has made at least one mistake! So perhaps you have your own agenda and have NO IDEA what's going on!

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  53. I wouldn't let anyone in Dr Pols practice touch my dog. What bothers me most is no intubation/monitor breathing and heart rate and poor sterile procedure. No reason for this other than laziness & caring more about how fast they can get things done & seeing as many patients as possible.

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  54. My husband and I have run our own veterinary practice for 28 years. We are in rural Missouri in a town of 1600 people. My husband did large animal work only for 20 years until he was knocked down by a cow and his shoulder ripped out; he now only does horses. I work exclusively on pets. There is a HUGE difference between large and small animal practice. Most of what Dr. Pol does in cattle is pretty much the norm for cattle vets; it is the way most things have been done for decades. You just don't use monitoring equipment, a lot of sterile technique, etc etc because you are out on the farm. There is mud;there usually isn't electricity, and you can be stomped to death. Small animal medicine and surgery is MUCH different. Even a small town pet vet like myself puts anesthetized dogs on oxygen (tube in the trachea),has them on monitoring equipment, gives them IV fluids for almost everything, and extensively uses pain medication. This really is BASIC practice now. Being "an elderly vet" does not give you the right to practice at a lower standard. These basic things are just not expensive; what they do however take is time. Dr. Pol has people standing all over that clinic that could help monitor anesthesia, run IV fluids, keep pets warm, hand feed them, etc etc. Those things make a huge difference in the recovery of pets. I am so sick of being portrayed as some sort of "big city money grubber" because there is either working sloppy like Dr. Pol or being "only in it for the $$$)!There are THOUSANDS of veterinarian and technicians in this country working in small towns both rural and city. We bust our hindends to help animals both big and small. I can't tell you how many late nights I have run into my clinic in my pajamas to check on a sick pet. There is NO reason in this day and age to not keep up with small animal medicine and surgery. You can research on the internet; there are hundreds of textbooks you can buy, there are courses you can take over the internet. There are dozens of veterinary meetings each year attended by thousands of vets/techs trying to learn the new drugs and techniques so they can save animals that used to be "unsavable". I went to a convention 6 weeks ago where 15,000 vets and techs attended. Dr. Pol had to be ordered by his state veterinary board to take continuing education and was fined for malpractice. There is just nothing "incredible" about that.

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  56. Do you really expect me to believe that Dr Pol cut off the top of a dogs legs with anesthesia? I was opened minded of your article until I read that. How in the hell did you ascertain that by watching a TV show. As far as the fine he was given. Where does the irresponsibility of the client come into play. If they were breeding dogs, they should have figured something was wrong and demanded that he see the dog. I am sure Dr Pol would have not told them to bug off and just wait. You only hear the 1/2 of the story, and if they are breeders, they should have known what to do. And if not, they were the incompetent ones. But no one will say that!
    Find me one vet that has not made a misdiagnosis or a human doctor for that matter. More people are killed by doctors in this country than all the murders & car crashes combined. I always look for the experienced doctor or vet, as it has been my experience, that experience counts. If Dr Pol has been in business for 40yrs, then he knows his stuff and I wish he was in my area, as I would be a client of his.

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    1. The board would have heard all sides of the story. And they chose to discipline the vet.
      Just staying in business doesn't mean someone knows their stuff, especially if there isn't competition.
      I'm glad for your animals that you live elsewhere.

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  57. The show is meant to be light-hearted and for the low information person in regards to veterinary medicine. They do not want to hear in depth info about vet. technique and special equipment. The average viewer is interested in seeing Dr Pol interact with the animals. Plain and simple, it's nothing to be overly critical about. It is after all a television show.

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  59. Grow up you back stabbing people. If you lived in the real world you would realize that we all do things different in different situations.

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  60. The guy is 70 years old so of course he's old school! But what does that matter if he doesn't share your "modern" methods as long as what he does work and his clients like and trust him? To me, he is incredible in his own way so don't put people down simply because they don't share your belief.

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    1. If what he did does work, I'd agree with you. But you should look up the complaint against him and see the results - lots of deaths. Practices like his often don't work, that's the problem.

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    2. So you wrote to Michigan's Bureau of Health Professionals to obtain a copy of the detailed report? The disciplinary action report (the link you posted earlier) doesn't give any detail other than the finding of negligence / incompetence. Where did you find documentation of "lots of deaths"? The detail I've read was from online articles about the one complaint from the owner's of the pregnant GSP who lost her litter. I haven't found any details through the state of Michigan's website. If you have obtained official detailed information, maybe you ought to post it so everyone can see?

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    3. No I didn't bother getting the report from the state, not necessary imo. But here is a credible link that quotes a bunch of it, read down a bit. I'd call 10 dead puppies a bunch personally. I'm sure their owner did.
      http://news.vin.com/VINNews.aspx?articleId=24580

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    4. Your comment "lots of deaths" implies there are lots of separate incidents where deaths occurred, not one incident where a litter of 10 puppies died. I would be very upset too. However, we have had numerous German Shorthaired Pointer litters and NEVER had to have a one get a C section. They were all born at home, with no deaths and most litters were bigger than 10! A C section is very rare for that breed! It's very misleading and irresponsible on your part to imply something more that what actually transpired has been happening over and over. I read the above link and one quote from another veterinarian I think sums up Dr Pol's practice very realistically: ["Dr. Sharon Shull, a practitioner in Texas, said: "I watched part of [an] episode last night. Kind of enjoyed it and gotta admit that he must be doing something right, as it was said on the episode that he has over 19,000 clients! Some of us could only wish for a fraction of that number. Regardless, he may be out of date on some things, but his practice is the reality of some areas."] Even the news service in the article you referenced sought the expertise opinion of a Purdue Vet School Veterinarian, Dr Johnson, to review this incident who concluded without necropsy and other pathology reports a definitive judgement wasn't possible HE WAS QUOTED: ["These are all opinions flavored by everybody’s own agenda.”] ALSO: ["Johnson observed that the facts as laid out by the complaint may appear damning, but the document does not present Pol’s rebuttal"] ALSO: [“If what is presented in the complaint is factual, then he was overly relaxed on this one ...”] AND [“(But) if the due date was calculated wrong and the discharge was described wrong by the owners, maybe he did not err.”] If he can't conclude certain negligence other than improper documentation, then how can you and others not involved, be so judgmental? You seem to imply that Dr Pol makes mistakes every day even though the state record only has one incident documented for him and the SAME incident documented for his partner. You weren't there (or were you?) so you don't know all the facts. He was reprimanded, paid his fine, endured his probation and took course as mandated by the state. Why are you attempting to malign his reputation with misrepresentation of the known facts! Do you have some kind of ulterior motive?

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    5. If it was my puppies, I'd have called 10 lots. There is a comment out there from a MSU vet who says his nickname at the vet school was "Dr. Pol Dig a Hole" because "all his patients died". Obviously not all of them, but enough to get the nickname. I can make judgements based on watching lots of episodes, and seeing lots of substandard care. I list the documented discipline, because that is clearly not my opinion, it is a determination made by the state. No, I have no ulterior motive, other than seeing animals get proper and humane care. He is the most public, visible example of the opposite - and in my opinion, does the most harm, because it leads people to think that this is ok, and perpetuates acceptance of such substandard care.

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  61. I have only watched one episode so far. He actively killed one patient, maltreated two others, made three patients worse and the only patient he did help was the one he didn't do anything with (apart from telling the owner the dog was obese).

    He misdiagnoses patients with techniques that aren't suited to make that kind of diagnosis in the first place. He is completely disregards animal suffering (and the existence of pain medication). And when he does mistakenly kill a patient he lies about it and blames the warm weather.

    He is a disgrace to the veterinary profession and I am ashamed that he is portrayed as being a 'dutch vet'.

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  62. I agree with lots of people here saying Dr Pol's medicine is way outdated and could improve a lot in its anesthesia monitoring/analgesia/sterile procedures, etc. That being said, if you're an educated owner, and despite seeing, I'm sure, his show on TV, and knowing the methods he uses should strickly be used in developping countries, you STILL decide to go on and bring your pet there, well I say that's your decision: your problem (or most likely, your pet's problem). If you know that his not so up-to-date methods could OR COULD NOT help your pet and are willing to take that risk because you're looking into the cheapest way possible to try and help your pet, then fine by me.
    But don't lure yourself into the "we've done anything in our power to save him, but nothing else could be done" feeling.

    And please don't try and put it on "the new vets" that would be "money-grabbers", just because they offer a more advanced medicine and are charging for their services, like they should. In the end, it's all a matter of priorities, and what people decide to invest their money on. Pets are not always
    in the top priorities, which is why vets like Dr Pol are still in business. But again, we need different services to accomodate different people.

    Yet, I'm not impressed by them having 19,000 clients, because nobody said they were returning clients...

    Danger is for people who have no clue whatsoever as to what good vet medicine is, and will thrust him no matter what...

    And like others have said here, I'm not sure that show really helps people understand the field of veterinary care and medicine..

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  63. This is a SHOW with TIME LIMITS!!!! The idea is to show as much as they can in a short span of time. I'm sure that protocol is followed or he wouldn't be practicing. NatGeo Wild isn't going to stick out its neck just for the money. I'm also sure that all kinds of animal protection groups are on the set making sure everything is on the up and up. Yes he's an old time vet but he has to keep up with modern medicine practices. That is required of all practicing vets and human physicians.

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    1. They're big business - sure they want money. And NatGeo is not really that vulnerable.
      Yes, it is required to keep up on modern practices. That's why he, and others in his practice, were disciplined for negligence-incompetence.

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  64. All of you bashers out there,do you all realize how much is edited in these programs?
    All you so called PERFECT Vets that are also bashing a fellow practiioner, SHAME on you.
    We do not see all that they do, such as pain injections, the scrubbing of the animals before procedures. If he is so outdated and has such poor sterile technique, in an area the size that he services there would be so many dead animals the communities would have been up in arms YEARS ago.
    Another thing, a comment was made on a blog, he could update his practice for pennies on the dollar? Whose dollar are you talking about? I have news for you all all, do you know that Michigan is a financially strapped state, not just the farmer but the general population? Again, if everything he has been doing there for 42 years would have been in peril long ago, as farmers especially wouldn't have someone coming in and causing their cows and sheep to die. You all stop bashing and get a life. Sometimes the old ways of doing things were better than the new.
    Another note, I talk w/ my Vet a LOT, I have been using him for over 27 years, and I can guarantee you his practice is not state of the art, he himself has said, it our area you cannot spend 40-80 thousand a year to get equipment or say ultrasound equipment, you have to have a great enough need to justify a cause to buy said item. Just like a bank, they require a feasibility study before they give you hundreds of thousands of dollars to build a business. The same rule of thumb applies to Vet medicine. However that said, most of you probably live way beyond your means because you don't really understand the "pennies on a dollar" concept.
    Most of you so called Vets on here, you are charging outrages fees for your services, and you can't even be seen on an emergent basis, much less called at home. So SHUT up.

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    1. I find it fascinating that we're getting a lecture on the business of veterinary medicine from you.  The practice owners at the VBB table are quite aware of the realities of veterinary medicine, and that is why our businesses are structured as they are.  As to the "pennies on the dollar" comment, nobody is asking Dr. Pol to find $56,000 for digital radiography (the figure a rep quoted me the other day).  We are asking him to, for instance, use general anesthesia where it is warranted and purchase sterile gloves from his local distributor.  These things aren't terribly costly.  There is a great deal of sticker shock, though, when a doctor fails to upgrade his practice for 10 or 40 years and then is revealed for practicing the out-of-date medicine that he is.  But as it relates to Dr. Pol, it isn't about Dr. Pol's lack of money to update.  He's rolling in money now with the help of NatGeo.  This is about glorifying yesterday's medicine today.

      His clients are like many these days.  They're satisfied with what they get because it's cheap.  I routinely see patients wallowing in one illness or another and their owners aren't too upset about it because the care they've been receiving to date has been cheap.  What's up with that?

      The extent to which veterinarians are living beyond their means today is the extent to which we acquired student loans.  And now that we're hitched to those for life, there is no extravagant living in our quarters.  And what business is it of yours or anyone else's how we live?

      Getting back to the business lecture, we're charging fees to cover our business costs, pay our taxes, pay off our loans & support our families.  But since you're so smart on this topic, you already knew that.  So, yeah, I guess we only do it for the money.

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  65. I'm wondering, why bother to watch if you don't like what you watch? Nowadays, we are more bitter and fussy about everything. Instead of criticizing, bashing, or judging somebody's work, we better go out and do something good and positive. If necessary, try to save lives as many as he has done. I must admit, I wouldn't be able to do so. I'm too selfish to save lives. However, the world will not change into a better place if we fail to see and to appreciate the goodness in a person. At some point, all we need is just somebody who is genuinely trying to help when nobody else cares. Somebody who comes right away when we call and need helps the most. Somebody who's fully committed and not giving up easily to help us. Living in modern life, using high tech equipments, learning advanced knowledge...does it make us more human? better and smarter than others? happier? Most importantly, does it make us care more for others?
    I live in a developing country where the medical technology is not as advanced as in developed countries, like your country. Maybe I'm not as smart as all of you either. And all the discussion about advanced medical procedures or high tech medical equipments has fascinated me. Fyi, we don't have many vets either. In remote villages, a human doctor sometimes has to act as a vet as well. Are they incompetent? I guess so! Does it matter? Nope. He's just trying to help. And if the poor farmers can't feed or take care the cattle well, does it make them irresponsible and should find a new job? Well, if only everything could be that simple. If we lived in unfortunate situation with limited resources, we can't afford to question level of education, degree, or certification, let alone... to complain about the procedures. But what do I know? I live in a different culture. Or maybe I'm just naive.
    Anyways, the good news is, Dr Pol is back for the new season!! Yay!! Don't miss any episode so we have something to write and to debate again.

    Cheers, have a nice weekend everyone :)

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    1. It's little examples like a patient in shock who could've had a decent chance of survival with a simple bag of fluids (very cheap stuff, simple to use, etc.) that are left to die on their own without help that irritates us. That dying animal cares more about proper perfussion of his vital organs than the love and care he gets from his medieval doctor.

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  66. I just finished watching Dr. Pol's show, and I decided to google his name when I came across blogs discussing his quality of care or lack there of. I am a Master's Level Social Worker not a vet or vet tech, but I love animals. I like Dr. Pol, and I believe he really does care about animals, owners and their well-being. I think he is a knowledgeable vet, but it appears he has grown desensitized over the years as it pertains to the animals in his care. I think we are all guilty of this in one way or another, but when you are a licensed professional, you have an ethical obligation to the people you serve. There have been several times I have watched the show and thought, "Why would Dr. Pol do that without giving that animal some pain medication!" It's obvious, even to a "lay" person, that the procedure is painful. I, as a pet owner, would have asked Dr. Pol to give my animal something for pain. So, as I read through the blogs and comments, I couldn't help but agree with both points of view. I still think Dr. Pol is a good vet, but I don't agree with all his practices. I think Dr. Pol should "look outside the box" and realize that his ways of doing things are not always the best or right way. Oh, I still plan on watching the show

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    1. Has anyone said "I am not going to administer pain meds?" Or could it just be possible that for the sake of time, they edit some of that out? Just sayin'

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  68. City folks are sure funny to listen to. I'm sure ya'll like listening to yourselves and debating purely acedemic issues from the comfort of that couch. Come on out to the barn and let't talk a spell.

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  69. Lipoma are non cancerous tumours made up of fatty tissue. They are found beneath the skin and are soft, moveable and painless, they can vary greatly in size.

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  70. whats really sad is you have to take out a mortgage just to get a minor surgery done on a dogs leg from these high tech vets and really you are paying for all there new equipment that wont ever be used on your pet so when theres a vet that actually is great and don't charge for all this high tech bullcrap and you wont have to worry about feeding yourself for the week someone wants to take him down because he is making them over priced vets look really bad its all about money just like they said there in it for money well mr pol can charge way less to these people and have 5 times of the volume of customers then these high tech vets that only cares about the dollar bill its sick that the USA even allows the vets to charge you thousands of dollars to perform a half hour surgery on a an animal they claim they need all this crap done prior to surgery well guess what it wasn't like that 20 years ago and all our animals didn't die off then wake up people...

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    1. If you cannot afford the expenses of having a pet ..... then DON'T get one! It's THAT SIMPLE!!

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  71. MY QUESTIONS are ..... Not only WHY isn't this very INCOMPETENT "vet" more severely disciplined ..... but ALSO -- HOW did it come about in the FIRST place that NatGeo chose HIM to be featured on a nationally-televised reality program -- with all the THOUSANDS of other much more well-educated, compassionate, and competent rural vets in America to choose from? HOW IS THAT?? I know that THIS VIEWER won't watch ANYTHING on NatGeo anymore as result of their very BAD decision-making!

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    1. Because his son is a TV producer or something, that's why he was chosen.
      Actually, Nat Geo now has another vet show - Dr. Oakley, Yukon Vet. She practices in a MUCH more rural area than he does, nothing fancy, but appears to me to practice excellent medicine, and is also kind and caring with the animals. Nice contrast.

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  72. Not so incredible dr pol As far as I can tell, no one else is so gleefully in the running for a designation that denotes a ... Dr. Jan Pol, AKA “The Incredible Dr. Pol,” as his reality show on National Geographic Wild is billed, is all .... at Hollister Online Shop on October 23, 2013 http://topusachannels.blogspot.com/2013/03/discovery-channel-kids-live.html I watched a few episodes of Pol, and I was horrified.

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  73. I watched the episode Noah's Bark did anyone else have a problem with that fat ass piece of shit bitch that made a like 3 second desicion on killing their dog instead of just paying to save the poor dog's life?? Like wtf how can u just decide to kill the poor puppy in 3 seconds? That fuckin bitch was like "well its an animal" I hope that fat bitch dies I wish I could kill that fatass myself. Like don't be such a selfish bitch and just kill a poor helpless dog ju st cuz u don't wanna pay $ to save them. Shouldnt their life and the fact that their healed and safe and in ur arms be the thing that matters to you? What a heartless fat piece of shit I really hope that bitch dies they deserve it >_>

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    1. Rachel, are you off your MEDS?? or are you just NUTS?? You should be locked up for just talking like you do. Threatening to kill someone and hoping they DIE. WOW, what a physco.

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    1. Um excuse me? What the hell am I jealous of, killing a dog? How stupid are you? Do u know how wrong it is to just kill a helpless puppy when u could at least try to save them? That fat dyke had the option of saving the dog and they chose to be heartless and just kill the poor thing.

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  75. Why the heck is Charles on the show? He is the most annoying person I've ever seen in my life. Who cares about his new dog, his girlfriend or his hobbies anyway? He is now on every single episode! Arrgghhh! The show is supposed to be about the 'INCREDIBLE DR.POL' . Should be renamed the annoying Charles show.

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  76. Back to the original post here. Dr Pol, although I have never met him, may be an old school vet. So I have had two of my "kids" Pekingese at the STATE OF THE ART UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA VETERINARY CLINIC SEVERAL TIMES. With bad results. They died. Once from a botched procedure. And they make you pay, IN ADVANCE, 75% of the lowest cost estimate they can conjure up. While I was there, an elderly lady was crying her eyes out. She didn't have the 75% and they told her the other option was to kill her companion. Fortunately I had room on my VISA card. I paid it for her. If nothing else, it made me feel good. As far as my kids, 5 Pekes and a Coon Hound, they all have medical insurance. But the point here is that I would rather have a caring old school Vet, that does not refuse service to old people than a new Vet with an office full of equipment and a broom stuck up his/her ass. So Dr Emmy, take the broom out of your ass, try having some compassion, and get over your jealousy. Maybe you can BS people who aren't from around here, but not people who know you......remember, "Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear." RichHervieu

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  77. It's a good thing WE "Poor, Stupid and Uneducated" farmers and pet owners can still choose what Vet to call.
    It sure won't be Ass Hats like you people.
    Dr Pol and vets like him are always welcome on our farm and are cherished members of our communities!!!
    Unfortunately for us, he is a rare and vanishing breed in this overly PC world.

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  79. Doc Pol is my vet. There are several in the area and, after some really horrible experiences with the others, I chose him. First, let me state that, while our area isn't a 3rd world country, we're pretty damn close. The county that I live in is adjacent to the county were Pol practices and we are the 2nd poorest county in Michigan. Folks here love their animals and we care for them to the best of our financial ability but many are challenged to keep food on the table some days. I'll give you an example of why I take my Shih Tzu to Dr. Pol. My daughter's Shih Tzu poke himself in the eye. Doc Pol examined him, told us that he could lose the eye if an infection set in, gave us some ointment and told us to come back in a week unless there seemed to be a problem. A week later, the eye was good. Cost? $40. Two years later, my other Shih Tzu poked himself in the eye. For whatever reason (maybe Pol was closed?), I took him to another local vet. They kept him overnight so they could surgically "button" his eye shut. They gave me ointment, told me he could lose his eye if an infection set in and said to bring him back in a week. A week later he had to stay another night to have the "button" removed. His eye was fine. Cost? $600. At the time, that was two weeks pay for me, a single mother. Another, more recent story: I inherited my Father's Shih Tzu when he passed. The poor dog had the worst breath I'd ever smelled and I noticed that he'd lost a tooth. I called that expensive clinic (because they are closer) and was told a teeth cleaning was $600 (what's with the $600 thing?!?). I took the dog to Pol's for his shots and asked the Dr. about the bad breath. He did a quick exam and we set up an appointment. They had to do blood work to insure that my 8 yr old dog could withstand the anesthesia, removed 5 teeth and cleaned the remaining ones. Cost? $130. All of you other Vets can complain about the way some things you've seen on a TV show are done but I can promise you that there are a damn sight more pets that have been sterilized in our area because Dr. Pol keeps the cost affordable and I've seen that he cares about the animals first hand but he also cares about the people who love them. Whenever there has been anything really seriously wrong, he has laid out the options, one always being to take them to another clinic more able to provide higher end care, and allows us decide what we can afford to do. My little guy, Gussie, died two years ago after being hit by a car. When we got him to the clinic, the Dr. who cared for him said that they weren't capable of 24 hr care and his best chance for survival would be in a hospital that could provide that. I asked where the closest one was and he told me that it was 1 1/2 hours away. I didn't think he would survive the trip, to be honest, and I couldn't afford a several thousand dollar vet bill. I also don't think, had he survived the brain injury, that he would have been anywhere near normal. They made my baby comfortable and I was able to spend some time with him. He passed during the night. I don't regret taking him to Pol's. No Vet around here could have done any more for him than they did but the others sure would have charge me plenty for it. Gussie's final bill at Doc Pol's was $0. Doc Pol is my vet and I'm damn glad to have him.

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