PETS MRSA UPDATE – DECEMBER
News came this month of another dog infected with MRSA during a cruciate ligament repair carried out at Medivet, Hendon, in August. The dog, 2 years old, ruptured a cruciate ligament and then developed a severe MRSA infection following surgery. As in Bella’s case, the infection went undetected for a number of months and it seems that it was only the fact that the dog was young and healthy that prevented it from becoming seriously ill sooner. Although the dog has not died, it has required major surgery to correct the effects of the infection and will never recover its previous fitness.
News also came of a cat treated at a Medivet practice in South London where the wound management was as poor as at Hendon. An abscess was treated by squeezing the wound by hand because the vet said he didn’t have time to do more. This is yet another example of Medivet’s failure to establish any kind of wound management practice. It is a sad fact that the cat died, but perhaps that’s all we can expect from the care Medivet give.
In December we began to consider whether there should be a group action against Medivet. Whilst Medivet continues to allow pets to become infected from the contamination on their premises they cannot claim to give any importance to the lives of the animals they treat.
The MP for Hendon, Andrew Dismore, has supported us by contacting the RCVS and persuading them to reopen the case concerning Bella’s care. A further complaint has been submitted to the RCVS Nursing Department about the behaviour and actions of a nurse at Medivet who refused to treat Bella whilst she was dying for fear of becoming infected herself.
The website is now receiving emails from outside the UK. It seems that the issue of MRSA and pets is touching the lives of many people from around the world, and has resonance with many of their experiences. In addition, we have made contact with senior figures at the RCVS and DEFRA in order to contribute to the development of veterinary practice in the UK. Our aim is not simply to be antagonistic, but to help shape veterinary services and regulation for the future.
Dogs Today printed two excellent articles in their November issue. One featured an extensive account of Bella’s treatment and the other explored MRSA and veterinary practices from an owner’s point of view. We are grateful for the time and effort that went into these two articles. A transcript of Jill’s interview on LBC with Nick Ferrari is now also on the website. Our Dogs also printed an excellent article on Bella’s treatment that outlined the issues we are concerned with and promoting. We will continue to look for new research articles as well as changes to the law governing veterinary practice.
Today (December 22nd) is Bella’s birthday. Normally, I’d be running around the living room with her, watching her open her presents and play with her new toys, but instead her ashes sit in a box, and I hold Medivet totally responsible. Please send a thought and prayer out to Bella, as well as all of those other animals that have contracted mrsa and other serious infections due to Veterinary negligence.