Leak under the Kitchen Sink

By Jana Radeask a vet a question online, second vet opinion, is my dog sick, symptoms of a sick dog

You find a small puddle under your kitchen sink and because you’re quite sure you didn’t spill anything you call a plumber.

The plumber comes and examines it carefully. “It seems to be a minor leak, might stop on it’s own, why don’t you keep an eye on it for couple weeks and see what happens,” he says.

You pay the plumber and watch it for couple of weeks, wiping up puddles.

Drip. Drip. Drip.

It does not stop, it seems to be getting worse. You call the plumber again.

Why would you let your vet get away with something you wouldn’t tolerate from your plumber?  It’s your pet’s health that is in stake.

He takes a look at it and informs you that you indeed have a leaking pipe. “It’s an old building,” he says, “something like that is to be expected.”

Yes, you know that you’re living in an old building. But you don’t want to spend your days wiping up under your sink.

“Hm, why don’t you put a container underneath it, that should prevent damage from the leak. Call me in couple weeks if this doesn’t help.”

how to tell if my dog is sick, should i take my dog to the vet, online vet advice

You keep emptying the container you put underneath it. At first every other day, then daily, then several times a day. You call the plumber again.

He evaluates the situation once again and suggests a larger container.

This time you protest that this is not a solution.

“Hm,” he scratches his chin, “ok, why don’t you try running less water, that should result in less leaking.”

how to tell if my dog is sick, dog skin issues, dog itching, dog scratchingYou try that. You have dirty dishes piling up on your counter and now a bucket under the sink that keeps filling up.

You call the plumber once again. “This solution is not working,” you say, I can’t do what I need to do and I still have a leak!”

The plumber is now annoyed with your poor cooperation. “The only other thing you can do is shutting off the main. That will definitely stop the leak.”

At which point would you look for a different plumber? After the first visit? The second?

Why would you let your vet get away with something you wouldn’t tolerate from your plumber?


It’s your pet’s health that is at stake.

Jana, a graphic designer by profession, never aspired to learning about dog health issues until she met Jasmine. Unfortunately, she received a crash course in the subject due to Jasmine’s many problems and has since become an advocate for other pet owners and their four-legged friends. On her blog, Dawg Business, Jana shares her experiences and the lessons she has learned with others. She started the blog hoping to motivate owners to educate themselves. She shares this message with all dog owners: At the end, your dog’s health is up to you!

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December 3, 2010 at 16:47

Thanks so much to Jana for writing this blog post. It is a wonderful point, delivered in an entertaining and easy to relate-to way. On a side note, Jana was the first person to offer us to guest post on her site, and we appreciate her continual support of VetLIVE! Don’t miss her blog, Dawg Business!

December 3, 2010 at 17:56

Thank you for publishing my article! :-) Hopefully it will get the message across!

December 6, 2010 at 09:20

I think it is important for the owner and the veterinarian to have a frank discussion about the symptoms and a differential diagnosis list as to what problems might be causing these symptoms. Then a diagnositc plan can be formulated. Once a diagnosis is obtained, a treatment plan can be formulated. The key is communication so that the each side knows how the other wants to proceed. The key is information and two way communication.

December 10, 2010 at 16:08

I completely agree with you. But that is where we hit the strongest wall. Vets ignoring what we were trying to tell them and dismissing symptoms. One doesn’t get very far from there.

December 11, 2010 at 16:19

Absolutely communication on both ends is essential. I think vets and owners fall short sometimes though. And I am a strong supporter of second opinions; sometimes it’s just not a good fit, be it if the vet is missing the boat or if personality wise there is a conflict. Thanks for commenting Dr. Niesenbaum–nice to have a vet reading!

December 11, 2010 at 16:47

Oh, I’d be happy to put up with poor bedside manners from a competent vet! :-)

Most frustrating is when you’re told it’s nothing when you KNOW it’s SOMETHING.

December 7, 2010 at 19:58

My beautiful sweet cocker spaniel suffered due to exactly this type of vet. By the time I found another vet her symptoms had become so complex that nobody could figure it out, and her necropsy showed at least two treatable conditions. Everyone I know “loves” their vet but unless they’ve had a sick pet they don’t really know if their vet is competent. I’m still not sure of my new vet’s competence, but she won’t blow off my concerns at least.

December 7, 2010 at 20:48

I am SO happy to hear you took the plunge and found a new vet! Cheers to you!

On the other hand, I am very sorry to hear your recent cocker had neglected medical conditions.

Many vets are not doing a good job; many are, but as with all professions, there is variety in quality and motive.

I wish you the best of luck with your new vet, and if you ever need a second opinion, we are here 24/7.

December 8, 2010 at 09:26

Thank you. I thought he just didn’t care about cocker spaniels until a friend of mine told me how his dog’s congestive heart failure was misdiagnosed by this same vet. Dogs don’t “just cough” for no reason. He has a new vet now, too.

December 8, 2010 at 10:34

Outrageous! I am SICKENED that this happens! I once filled in at a hospital when they were short on vets, and I diagnosed heart failure (this was also a cocker spaniel). The owner was pretty upset understandably. She had been seeing the same vet the dog’s entire life.

I informed the vet of the situation, and she had the client come back in when she was there. She told the lady the dog had no heart problem! OUTRAGEOUS! We had taken x-rays that PROVED it; it was a very black/white situation!

Can you believe a vet did this?!?! It frustrates me as a vet beyond belief! This is why second opinions are so important. This is one of our missions with the services we offer.

Thanks for commenting–great dialogue!

December 7, 2010 at 23:05

Doglover, yes, that’s was exactly my experience and my point. So sorry to hear that though. That’s why I started blogging, trying to help open people’s eyes.

December 8, 2010 at 09:28

Thank you for being outspoken about vet care. Our pets depend on us to make good decisions for them.

December 8, 2010 at 15:07

Would you be willing to share your story on my blog?