one veterinarian story you may (or may not) find helpful
March 12, 2020
If you’re moving your entire family to Mexico, this will likely also include your pets. At some point during your life in Mexico, you will need a veterinarian. While I did not arrive with pets, I did acquire dogs afterward. Dogs I still have a decade later. During that time, we’ve had a few (very few) incidences that have required medical treatment.
If you’re wondering what vets are like in Mexico, my honest answer truly is I’m not sure. I say that even though I’ve used them over the years. I will share my most memorable story with you and let you decide for yourself…if you can.
Once during a dog walk sniffing session, one of them was poked in the eye with something small, likely a tiny stick or hardened blade of grass. It was enough to puncture a small vessel at the bottom of her eye. This of course, bled. Unfortunately for her, it bled for three days. For me, it was time to call a vet.
I hit up a popular page on social media and called one of the vets recommended by other expats. The vet was prompt in returning my call and setting up a home visit for noon the next day.
Noon (the next day) came and went without any sign or call from her. Around 1:00 p.m. I sent an “are you coming” message. She replied she was. That was all. She did arrive, but three hours late and never apologized, only said someone else called her with an emergency. I was livid, not only for her tardiness, but lack of explanation in the message as well as the attitude I got when she finally did arrive.
She made it clear that she was doing me a favor and her time was of more value than mine. Setting my “lividness” aside (since this was for my dog), I said nothing while she unpacked her kit, checked out the tiny eye cut, suggested a blood test (to see why it wouldn’t stop bleeding) and offered to message the results later that day.
To that, she was true. She emailed the lab results in their entirety with a prescription for the dog. I filled the prescription and followed her directions to a T, which was 2 pills a day for 3 days. After several days (and the completion of her recommended prescription), my dog’s eye was still bleeding. I sent a photo and informed her of the updated situation.
Her reply was “I can do an operation to manually tie the vessel, blah, blah, blah….the cost will be 3,000 peso.” Before I replied, I decided to do my own research into her prescription method. The truth was, I was still partially steaming from her initial visit and for reasons unknown (gut), just didn’t fully trust her.
Long story short, since the meds for the dog were purchased at a regular (human) drug store, I was able to easily look them up. Not only did I learn what they were and what they did, I also learned they needed to be taken for a minimum of 6 days to be effective. She had prescribed them for only 3 days.
Since I still had my dog’s prescription in hand (dated only 3 days before), I was able to go back to the drug store and buy more of the exact same meds. Following the advice of a respectable medical website, my dog’s eye was healed within that week. That was nearly 4 years ago.
The total cost for the medication was 120 peso, of which I used only half the blister of pills.
I never did tell her that I looked up the meds and followed someone else’s advice, but it was an experience I never forgot. I honestly do not know if she intentionally mis-prescribed the length of time the meds were supposed to be taken to drum up a bit of business during a slow season, or if it was an honest mistake (making her an inadequate vet).