• Report: #253201
Complaint Review:

Banfield Vet

  • Submitted: Fri, June 08, 2007
  • Updated: Sun, July 12, 2009

  • Reported By:woonsocket Rhode Island
Banfield Vet
1385 South Washington St. North Attleboro, Massachusetts U.S.A.

Banfield Vet abusing and killing innocent animals,rude service by unqualified unlicensed people North Attleboro Massachusetts

*Consumer Suggestion: Shop for quality not price

*Author of original report: sigrid of north carolina is an idiot

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: I am glad your pet is okay

*UPDATE Employee: You need to open your eyes and ears

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Hurried Procedures and Improperly Trained Staff

*Author of original report: you people commenting are idiots!

*Consumer Comment: So The complaint was not formal and yes we are aware that dentist and dr. get half from blue shield

*Consumer Suggestion: Refusing a second opinion???

*Author of original report: Banfield vet kills animals

*Consumer Comment: vaccine reactions and what consumers do not realize

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My wife took our dog in on June 7th to get the free office visits offered on Thursdays between 3 and 5pm and the Vet told my wife the dog needs new shampoo,food,some shots and in her opinion a surgical procedure for over $1500 so my wife took the advice and completely discarded it because the Vet was very unknowledgable and rude.

Th shots and services are all priced on average $10 more than other Vets so the visit is not really free just figured into the services.The Vet recommended the distemper shot and said it was required as is the rabies shot.My wife then said ok to the shot but only the shot and the new shampoo as the dog does not have fleas but is always itching due to dry skin.

So after the shot is administered the vet tells my wife of the possible alergic reactions. The Vet sends us home and the dog is breaking out in a rash,itching and having trouble breathing.

We call the Vet and explain the symptoms and they tell us to rush the dog in before her throat closes up and she dies,they need to give her a shot to counteract the distemper shot. The original distemper shot they recommended was $26 and when I get the dog to the Vet they tell me the counter shot which is benadryl will be $64.02.

I tell them I do not have $64.02 and that they did this to my dog and she is barely breathing,give her the shot.
They tell me to pay the $64.02 or take the dog back home and cross my fingers and say a prayer because they do not think she will make the night.

I Paid the $64.02 as the dog is 4 pounds and less than a year old and the sweetest little puppy but then I call the 800 company number and get the run around and Had to rush the animal to a 24 hour animal hospital at 2 in the morning for the same symptoms,rash and trouble breathing and the emergency visit was very expensive.

I looked up Banfield on the internet and they have a really bad reputation for abusing and killing animals they treat and over charging for all the services.
Just got back from another local Vet who said the Banfield vets are the worst and the dog does not need the $1500 operation and is healthy and growing fine and is on excellent food.

BEWARE OF BANFIELD:they are overpriced,rude and most of all very unqualified to treat animals.

woonsocket, Rhode Island

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/08/2007 11:05 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/banfield-vet/north-attleboro-massachusetts-02760/banfield-vet-abusing-and-killing-innocent-animalsrude-service-by-unqualified-unlicensed-253201. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Suggestion

Shop for quality not price

AUTHOR: Pyricon - (U.S.A.)

1. Your opening paragraph says a great deal? "My wife took our dog in on June 7th to get the free office visits offered on Thursdays between 3 and 5pm and the Vet told my wife the dog needs new shampoo,food,some shots and in her opinion a surgical procedure for over $1500 so my wife took the advice and completely discarded it because the Vet was very unknowledgable and rude."

a. If the Vet was "very unknowledgable and rude" why get anything there? You are paying for the skills of the Vet not a 'shot'. This is not a "quickie oil change" service.

b. If you cannot afford the cost of care, don't get a pet. Wellness Plans and Pet Insurance help, but not if you cannot afford the simple maintenance costs of a living being who can suffer from neglect.

c. What was this expensive surgical procedure? What is the training of your wife that supports her decision to "completely discard the advice"?

2. Vaccines have to be approved by the FDA. The incidence of allergic responses to the vaccination has to be low to be approved. Your dog was just one of the few that unfortunately has an over-reactive immune system.

3. "So after the shot is administered the vet tells my wife of the possible alergic (sic) reactions." So, you were warned. Then when you called in, the Vet's staff told of the risk and directed you to come in. That is also proper as the risks of an anaphylactic reaction can be fatal. Do you know of anyone who carries an epi-pen in case they are stung by a bee? Same thing. It appears that the sole basis for your complaint is that you were charged for a service given because your specific dog had a reaction. It is unfortunate, but the reaction is the dog's fault, not the Vet's. It is unfortunate that the dog has an immune system problem. Do you also expect your physician to pay for your medical problems?

4. Your abusive comments toward other posters only shows your level of anger. Car engines do not seize after going 1 mile simply because the engine oil was changed from 10W40 to a 20 weight. There was another problem which the owner either missed or ignored. The use of a cheap oil change service instead of a mechanic turned out to be a costly one. A kid changing oil will not catch a major engine problem that a mechanic might. The other poster you attacked was correct. There is no malpractice here, just a cheap dog owner.

5. Banfield is a nationwide corporation. All of its offices are not the same. Your attack on the corporation, rather than the individual location or vet, is just more unreasonable misdirected anger. You report title, which exaggerates and frankly slanders the clinic, is unjustified. Suggesting that the corporation has a policy of neglect or such is simply unsupportable and slanderous.

6. The price of emergency services vary from clinic to clinic. Emergency clinics charge hundreds for a visit. Simply because you went on the "cheap hours" does not mean that everything will be cheap. It costs money to pay for staff and a hospital. Similarly, each clinic prices its services to cover operating costs in their own way. Also, the type of vaccination also affects cost. Few vets give just a "distemper" vaccination, instead giving one of the combination vaccines instead. The cost of a DHLPP-C is about $10 more than a DHLP vaccination. It does not surprise me that you were charged for the reaction treatment, considering that you went to the "free" clinic hours.

7. "The dog does not have fleas, but is always itching due to dry skin." Dogs do not normally have "dry skin". Fleas are everywhere. Ignoring problems will not help the dog. Stop self=diagnosing", you are not qualified to do so.

8. The use of Benadryl to stop a reaction is normally sufficient. Apparently, your dog has more severe problems. Just make certain that you ALWAYS have the dog pre-medicated for vaccinations in the future. This condition will not go away, but will get progressively worse with each exposure.

9. NO honest, responsible Vet will slander another. There may be a basis for a difference of opinion about a diagnosis, but I doubt the Vet claimed Banfield was "the worst".

Stop shopping price and instead ask people you know and trust who they use and trust. If one vet or the staff does not work out for you, don't abuse the practice, just move to another.

Just remember, you get what you pay for. You ask for cheap and you will get cheap.
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#2 Author of original report

sigrid of north carolina is an idiot

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

learn to read you idiot.
I stated I went in and the vet told me my dog needed these shots and I was ok with that and asked about reactions and she told me she gives these shots everyday and the dog will not have a reaction.

maybe the woman was trying to make a sale or just be reassuring but she made a promise that didn't pan out.

now I managed a picture frame gallery for over 5 years and when I framed something for someone and they didn't like the choice of mats I assured them would look ok and told them to go with I did the right thing and changed the mats.

I didn't charge them or let their loved ones die for my false statements of wrong judgement.

also I don't think some little teenage girl who was trained thru 6 hours of video cassette should be allowed to give me such advice,I thought even though she is young she works for a vet a must be trained and would not promise such a thing unless she was sure.

I don't know where you get the crazy idea I was upset or had an attitude or whatever you said .
I am open minded and believe you catch more bees with honey and treat people with respect (the way I would like them to treat me)
so follow some advice yourself and don't jump to conclusions.

I put all Banfield people in that group because I talked to management and corp. and they were just as stupid and uncaring and thought it was ok for this untrained teen to make false promises as long as she got the sale and they out right told me that they give bonuses and such on how many people you sign up for the yearly plan.

the first and formost thing they train is for employees to sell the plan and worry about quality and care later.
just lie and get the customer to sign the paper.
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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

I am glad your pet is okay

AUTHOR: Sigrid - (U.S.A.)

I want you to know that when you received a receipt, and a huge stack of paperwork from Banfield; there was a physical exam printout, and pages that discussed each vaccine, what it protects against, and signs to look for in case of a vaccine reaction!

I want you to know that watching a pet die from distemper and parvovirus is much worse and more expensive than giving the vaccine or treating any vaccine reaction. You should also never take a small breed dog for vaccines close to the end of the day because it is well known that they can have reactions and should be closely monitored throughout the day!

I want you to know that the fact that your pet always itching is a sign of allergy and not "dry skin". Your dog should have already been on benadryl, medicated shampoo, and good flea medications such as Advantage.

I want you to know that characterizing a national corporation and lumping all veterinarians in Banfield as abusive, unknowledgeable, and the worst sounds like ignorance. There are many many caring and extremely intelligent and knowledgeable veterinarians in Banfield....I know many of them personally!

I am glad to hear that your puppy is okay! I thank God your "unknowledgeable" Banfield vet did finally convince you to give your puppy its first parvo shot, a shot that is usually given at 6-8 weeks of age. I hope you have your pet's allergy explored further with your new local vet who is of course more qualified, even though he went to the same school as many other Banfield vets, in the same time frame, and took the same courses....

Lastly I hope you realize that when you say something like "I took advice and completely discarded it" you sound like you have an attitude and you sound very ignorant. It sounds like you weren't interested in listening even before the visit began. Someone recommends something to help you, and you act like you cannot even listen, it is noticeable and does not make the other person feel appreciated or feel like they want to continue to help you. It almost sounds like you walked in first with an attitude, with the vet (who is a human being too) picked up on it, and felt very uncomfortable and your experience feel apart from there. I've dealt with people like that and they make me very uncomfortable and then I respond with attitude back.

Many people that walk in during wellness hours trying to save a buck or two to just get their pet a rabies and the bare minimum because it's too expensive to take care of your pet the right way because veterinarians charge too much....having a pet is a choice and a responsibility. I wish I could make every person out there who has a pet realize that taking care of another life is not a passing fancy, not something you do when you don't have the financial means, and just like having a child, isn't something that everybody should do. So many other people take the time to research, get their pet the shots, have their pets spayed and neutered, and spend the money and time to make sure their pet is well taken care of. Too many others unfortunately just get the rabies and let the poor thing lay in the yard all day itching from fleas.

I hope one day you learn not to categorize all people so negatively. Banfield is a corporation, but populated by individuals, human beings and most of them are very wonderful caring people who love pets. They also, just as you do, have to survive and be paid. Some of them have personal concerns, others are burnt out from trying to help pet owners who "completely discard" their opinions. If I receive bad service from Tracey at WalMart....I don't blame every WalMart! If Tracey was rude to me that day, well I don't know Tracey, maybe her mother died 4 weeks ago...And I'm sure every service you charge for at your job is reasonable and that you like to give away services free of charge, because not getting paid will feed your children well. It always amazes me how people will complain about spending money on a pet they had a choice to get, but will spend on overpriced goods such as movies, books, Starbuck's coffee.....

Try adjusting your attitude...it may make a huge difference in the service you receive in the future. Sure your new vet is all buddy buddy because you probably went in there all smiling and had your "woe is me" story and listened to everything they said because you had just had a big scare....wait until you "completely discard" that opinion and see what happens.
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#4 UPDATE Employee

You need to open your eyes and ears

AUTHOR: Andy - (U.S.A.)

Please, before responding to a claim...read it. I am an employed as a Banfield Pet Nurse, and have been for 3 years. I love my job, the people I work with, and the atmosphere within the hospital. First I would like to note that no one goes through that much schooling and spends that much money, time, and energy to murder animals. Don't be ridiculous. Becoming a veterinarian is very hard, and although there are some (just as in any business) that can give a bad reputation, not all "Banfield" vets are incompetent. The staffing is usually minimal, and they do train pretty much anyone. BUT, they DO NOT throw you into a situation that your knowledge base cannot support at that time.

There is a 3 MONTH trial basis and a MULTITUDE of tests that you need to pass both written and practical with a 100% in order to stay employed. As for vaccines, every vet and nurse will go over the reactions that can occur. It is pretty simple...we give services that you pay for. Just like Jewel, Target...You cannot go into a Jewel and expect them to give you food without money, much like you cannot go into a Banfield and say my pet is sick please care for it for free. Although I do understand that vaccine reactions are a sticky subject, but we are not responsible. YOUR pet reacted, so it's YOUR responsibility to cover your pet's needs. Many other pets received the very same vaccine and did not react. Vaccines are injected into the body, any pretty much anything you do to the body has risks, and we ALL know that.

But, do people who are allergic to peanuts sue the company? No. The product is not bad. Distemper any many other vaccines should be required by law because of the severity of the diseases they protect against. After working for this long, I must admit, ignorant people, like many of the ones posted on this site, are aggravating. Kennel Cough is a virus much like the common cold or flu. It protects against the most severe and common strains of the virus. You can still contract kennel cough even though you are vaccinated. Nothing on this earth reads as 100% effective. Despite that, my favorite answer from clients is "my dog never goes out, he's not at risk"...You're here, aren't you? If you bring your dog into pets mart, petco, grooming, parks, even in your own backyard you are putting your pet at risk to contract intestinal parasites, viruses, ticks, fleas (which can be inside your house as well), along with many other diseases that can affect your dog or cat. If you would read the handouts printed EVERY TIME with your invoice, maybe you would have realized that you are informed, just too ignorant to see or hear what we are telling you.
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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Hurried Procedures and Improperly Trained Staff

AUTHOR: Ex-employee - (U.S.A.)

As an ex-employee of Banfield Pet Hospital, I know that allergic reactions to vaccinations are not all that uncommon. However, the staff at Banfield in North Attelboro most definitely should have notified the customer of possible allergic reactions and symptoms BEFORE administering any vaccinations. The reality is that Banfield staff will always recommend every possible vaccination whether needed or not. A distemper vaccination is not required by law.

The job of the Pet Nurses (vet techs) and veterinarians at Banfield is to SELL as many products and services as possible. Their job is also to treat as many pets as possible during the course of one day. This is made very clear to employees in their on-line training modules. If a pet owner calls Banfield with a question or concern about their pet, they're always told to "come in today." Banfield wants to get the owner to bring the pet in, allow the Pet Nurse to introduce the Wellness Plans during the course of the examination, and recommend various procedures and products.

Sales of Wellness Plans tops the list of their priorities. If a Pet Nurse discusses the Wellness Plans during the course of a patient visit and the pet owner decides to purchase a plan, the Pet Nurse gets a bonus on their paycheck for having sold the plan.

Again, SELLING is the priority at Banfield-- not treatment, not dealing with emergency situations, not spending time with the pet owner. Most of the dealings with the pet owner are done by the Pet Nurses so that the veterinarian's time is freed up to do surgical procedures. In theory, there's nothing wrong with that approach.

The problem at Banfield is that many of the Pet Nurses are not adequately trained. Banfield hires people off the street with absolutely no previous medical or veterinary experience. They give a new Pet Nurse approximately 2 weeks to get up and running as a veterinary technician. This is ludicrous since "real" vet techs generally go through 2 years of training to become certified Vet Techs. Banfield doesn't hire certified Vet Techs because they don't pay enough to attract such people. I personally found their training methods to be totally inadequate. How can you expect someone to learn a fairly complex laboratory procedure from reading an online module? Medical treatment of any sort requires HANDS ON practice, over and over again. The person in charge of training me didn't have time to spend on the training, was resentful because of it, and when she actually tried to train me, I felt it was more "hazing" than actual training.

The smiling, helpful face you see when Banfield employees are trying to sell you a Wellness Plan or some other expensive and perhaps unnecessary service is very different from what you'd see if you were back in the hospital behind closed doors. I was often taken aback by the nasty comments about specific pet owners made by Banfield staff and the sometimes rough verbal and physical treatment of the animals left in their care. You might be led to think you're saving money by taking your pet to Banfield, but the reality is their pricing for certain items is inflated, much higher than you'd pay elsewhere. Would I take my pet to Banfield? The answer is most definitely NO.
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#6 Author of original report

you people commenting are idiots!

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

to the few idiots posting comments that the vet was ok telling the victim the dog would not have a reaction:

if you brought your car to jiffy lube and they told you they were out of 10w40 motor oil which you always put in your car but they have 5w30 synthetic oil which will be fine in your car,you trust the PROFFESIONAL and say ok and a mile down the road your engine SEIZES!

you are telling me you would not sue Jiffy Lube for giving you false advice?

you all LIE!

by making the comment that the vet did promising the puppy would definately be ok he should have taken responsibility and given the second shot.


if I took my mother to the hospital and they refused to help her until we paid up front while she laid there and died in front of all of us I would sue and call every news station.

its just wrong and very bad/unproffesional business.

SUE THESE IDIOTS. I'll never take an animal there.

do a google search on this outfit and read the horror stories.

this guy is right this vet sucks and most of the VETS are no more than students learning and they also don't tell you that when you walk in.
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#7 Consumer Comment

So The complaint was not formal and yes we are aware that dentist and dr. get half from blue shield

AUTHOR: Michelle - (U.S.A.)

we are well aware of our medical problems with doctors and blue cross and other insurance. Sooo who should you contact? This lady may not be college grad but sounds like the drs bedside manner was in question and his associates. We know that when a dr charges 2,0000.00 they only get around 1,000.00 so? I pay premiums? so the fda runs these meds up that are not even necessary so do please tell us dr? what are we to do about what insurance co. do with a vet or dr billing?
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#8 Consumer Suggestion

Refusing a second opinion???

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

I am browsing around Ripoff Report and stumbled upon your response to the vet who tried to offer A FREE SECOND OPINION. What the heck? Why look that gift horse in the mouth (especially from a vet)?

Look, your situation was horrible, I will admit. But you have to understand that there are factors at work that you may not understand and the American healthcare system is not free. The vet performed a service and is being reimbursed for the cost of the vaccines. They cannot guarantee to you beyond the shadow of a doubt that any anatomy will have the exact same reaction as another, and your claim that he did doesn't matter; he can say there's nothing to worry about and that's in his opinion, but you believed him and made the decision to trust him, he didn't twist your arm. Allergic reactions are impossible to predict, especially in puppies. You really don't even know what part of the dilutant was the issue, so you just know that your puppy will probably not get that vaccine until you are sure and risk the puppy contracting distempur or whatever disease it was preventing. You need to also think about the fact that you run the risk of allergy in other vaccines from other sources, not just Banfield. So you're not done with this situation.

Guess what: saying that one doctor will waive care for an unpredictable reaction to a vaccine doesn't mean that applies to all doctors, or even one other. The correct term for claiming B should be a certain way because A is that way is a fallacy of negative premise (doctor A waived a fee for allergic reaction, and the waiver solved the problem, so doctor B will waive the fee to solve the problem). That was your son's doctor's decision, and whether that made you feel better or not it came out of his pocket. Your doctor for your son didn't cause the reaction, the vaccine did, but the vet probably had enough overhead where he wasn't going to break himself to cover care afterwards, or was an activist and considered that a good deed against vaccines (which is rare but possible in today's medical profession).

You live in a society where medical professionals are forced to make less money just to ensure everyone gets the same care, where doctors are paid better on volume than quality care. That bleeds over to vets who are now taking insurance payments and forced to bend to the same scrutiny as human doctors. And guess what else... the vets were paid hansomely for decades without question, and only now, with health care issues abundant, do consumers want to force vets to give away their profession free of charge. Don't expect it to happen, as most vets are private practices, even national ones.

It's frustrating to people who know a lot about how the medical industry operates on a business stance when people who you wouldn't let diagnose anyone else try to diagnose themselves and call themselves experts of the situation. I don't mean to sound like I'm making a personal attack, but you must understand that through rebuting the rebuttal submitted by this vet you basically denied a second opinion, and a reasonable one at that.

Other things in your story tell more about why you are smearing Banfield: you never mention the doctor by name, you say in the beginning you completely disregarded the medical advice of a professional, and everything you have a problem with is connected to your emotional interpretation of the situation (i.e. preferring to word the situation "your pet was dying and they didn't care," rather than "your pet had an allergic reaction and they refused service without payment"). And filing a complaint with the state board of vet medicine is like trying to pass a bill through congress... expect it to go nowhere unless it's valid and high-profile. Unfortunately for you, this is neither.

I only hope I have at least helped you let go of the situation and move on. The pet is healthy now and that's all that matters. If anything, you learned about your pet's unique situation and know to look out for it in the future.

But think about it: if you get a bee sting and take Benedryl to counteract the allergic reaction, do you sue the bee? He didn't know you were allergic; he just knew he needed to sting you. It wasn't his fault. He was just doing what he was trained to do: the sting, not the reaction.
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#9 Author of original report

Banfield vet kills animals

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

this is to the gentleman who tried to give us some input.
I do appreciate you trying to help and understand what you are saying but I asked the vet if this shot was safe since the puppy was only 3 to 4 pounds and she said absolutley.......nothing to worry about at all.
Then as far as the comparisson to a kid maybe having a reaction.
My 2 year old son has had reactions and the pediatrician never played hard ball with me at the front counter while my son sat and died in the waiting room.
This vet that assured me the shot was 100% safe for my puppy argued with my that I either pay the extra money or take the puppy home and let her die.
If my doctor or my sons doctor refused treatment like that while we were dying in front of them I or my wife would sue for millions.

Unfortunately the 1000's of terror stories on the internet and BBB and rip off reports are not and cannot all be misunderstandings.

This vet should not be allowed to treat animals as they are to stupid and uncaring.

I hope my complaint with the Ma. vet licensing board gets the attention it deserves.

thank you for your input
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#10 Consumer Comment

vaccine reactions and what consumers do not realize

AUTHOR: Tim - (U.S.A.)

I am a veterinarian with some information on what you discussed. While you make it seem that Banfield is liable for the vaccine reaction your pet suffered, they are not. In fact, if your child had an anaphlyactic episode from a MMR vaccine, you and your insurance would be billed for any aftercare. It is no different in veterinary medicine. A vaccine was administered in good faith and under the highest standard of care, provided your pet was examined and determined healthy. We cannot predict which animal/pet will react nor can we assume that liability. And, you will (and should) be expected to pay for any aftercare should your pet react. Your pet was not necessarily reacting to the vaccine but the adjuvants in the diluent.

Believe it or not, the same vaccine reaction rate occurs in all species-humans, primates, canines, etc..

From here on out, I would recommend pre-treating your pet prior to vaccinating.

Perhaps they could have explained this to you before vaccinating? Perhaps they could have been nicer to you in explaining why they are not liable for any vaccine reaction? Unless there was gross negligence, there is no liability.

Another example: In human medicine, if your sinus infection does not get better with one medication, do you demand the next round of medication for free? Do you demand a free office visit? No.

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