Fort Lauderdale, FL
Dr. Susan Kelleher,
Broward Avian and Exotic Animal Hospital
I sit here in disbelief as to what occurred today with Cookie. As I have been reviewing today's events, I simply cannot believe the negligence that occurred at your hospital today. Cookie was clearly in pain for a long period of time. Eventually, after a full day of dealing with her pain without pain medication(except for the initial post op meds that were given 24 hours before), her little body went into shock and she died within 10 minutes of our return home. When we asked the technician during discharge why Cookie was trembling, she said that she had been doing that on and off throughout the day but that Cookie was "fine." She was clearly not fine!!! She was going into shock and NO ONE at the hospital seemed concerned at all. Dr. Diaz didn't know that trembling in a rabbit is NOT normal? Your interns and techs don't know that trembling in a rabbit is not normal? You are supposed to be experts in rabbit care and this, even as a nurse with NO rabbit medical experience, seems obvious to me. We then asked for pain medication for Cookie because we know that rabbits don't handle pain very well and I was horrified that it wasn't part of the discharge treatment plan. We were finally told to just use the TINY bit of leftover Metacam that we had at home from another doctor, IF she needed it. If she needed it????? She was a post op rabbit who went through a very hard surgery(as you stated on the phone). She should have been on prophylactic medication throughout the day to prevent bunny pain, shock and eventual death. She did not die of pneumonia, she died of shock from severe untreated pain. This could have been prevented and I am horrified that I put our little Cookie in the hands of such unconcerned and negligent staff members. You should know that rabbits need pain medication after surgery and it wasn't even on the discharge prescription list. I expected so much more of you and your staff. Cookie made it through the surgery fine...she just needed proper care post op and she didn't get it. I am sick over this because I didn't listen to the horrible reviews that I read online about you and your team. Instead, I trusted you to keep Cookie comfortable and free of pain. Cookie was our sweet little girl and I had faith in you to take proper care of her, just as I would have if you had a child in my NICU. Now, I must live with the guilt of taking her to Broward Avian and Exotic for treatment. And, I will make sure that no one I know will make the same mistake.