A Veterinarian who ‘accidentally’ euthanased the wrong animal due to a paperwork mix-up should bear full responsibility:
“24-year-old son Jesse brought the pets to the vet one at a time, dropping Lady off first.
He filled out some basic paperwork before returning home with the cat carrier to collect Little Bit.
But when Mr Conlon returned with the second cat and asked if he could take Lady home, the vet asked him “You want the bodies?”
“At first he thought it was some cruel joke,” Ms Conlon told the Worcester Telegram.
But the vet told him he had signed the paperwork to have the cat put down.”
Euthanasia is not just another ‘service’ offered by a Vet clinic. When an owner brings an animal to me to be euthanased, my first question is – what’s the reason for that decision? Sometimes the reason is obvious. If it’s not, I make it my business to understand what caused the owner to take this drastic, irreversible decision. Sometimes there is an alternative, even if the owner doesn’t realise that.
As Veterinarians, we always compel the owner to sign a written consent for euthanasia procedure (and other procedures) but the simple reality is, a piece of paper will non (and should not) exempt you if you don’t use your head.