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This Family Thought They Euthanized Their Dog — Until They Found Her at a Shelter

Discussion in 'Other Dogs in the News' started by Michele, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. Michele

    Michele Chi Super Dog Staff Member Super Moderator

    This Family Thought They Euthanized Their Dog — Until They Found Her at a Shelter
    Months after thinking Zoey was put the sleep, the family is now reunited with their pet.

    A family from Utah recently got the surprise of a lifetime when they randomly discovered that their dead boxer was very much alive.

    Earlier this year, the Coates family made the difficult decision to have their ill dog, Zoey, euthanized at the vet after a large mass was discovered on her side and she started having seizures, KVTB reports. Heartbroken, her owner, Tawny Coates, who didn't think Zoey would get better, decided to put her to sleep, and she asked her father to take the dog to the vet's office for the procedure. The Coateses believed she was dead, until six months later, when Tawny was shocked to come across a photo of her dog on a boxer rescue group's Facebook page.

    "I see the Boxer Town rescue page and I'm like, 'That looks like my dog,'" Coates told KVTB. "Then I thought, 'I'm crazy,' but I click on it anyway and zoom in and say, 'No, that's my dog!'"

    At first, it seemed unreal to Tawny, since she had received documents from the veterinarian confirming Zoey's death. The documents included a $215 receipt for euthanasia, cremation and the dog's medical record, plus a sympathy card from the staff at the clinic.
    "It breaks my heart because I don't understand why somebody would do this to my family," Tawny added.

    Dr. Mary Smart, who was the vet that saw Zoey at the Bayview Animal Hospital, shared her side of the story with KVTB. She said she spoke with Tawny's father, Larry, when he came in and explained that Zoey didn't have to be euthanized. But, according to Dr. Smart, Larry insisted the dog be put to sleep. For their part, the Coates family is claiming that this conversation between Dr. Smart and Larry is a "complete falsehood."

    "I screwed up," Dr. Smart told KVTB. "I should have called the family. Had I any inkling that they might at all be interested in having the dog back, I would have for sure called. But after my conversation with Mr. Coates, it just seemed very obvious to me that they didn't want the dog."

    Instead, Dr. Smart decided to take Zoey to a rescue group without contacting the family. She used the money given for the pet boxer's cremation to surgically remove the tumor on Zoey's back. A picture of Zoey in the exam room appeared on the rescue group's Facebook page later that day.

    "If I had followed procedure, if I had followed protocol, if I had done what Mr. Coates asked me, they wouldn't have their dog," the vet added. "Their dog would have been euthanized and this family would be without their dog."

    The Coates family is now happy to have Zoey back in their household. Utah's Veterinary Board told KVTB that they might look into Dr. Smart's case, but there are no official complaints filed against her at the moment.

  2. TWadeJ

    TWadeJ Big Dog

    Sounds like the owners obtained a dog that they could not afford to provide proper treatment for. The vet, realizing the dog could be saved, treated the dog pro bono. I do not believe Zoey should have been returned to the original owners - they abandoned her and asked that she be KILLED.
    Madeleinemom and Michele like this.
  3. Michele

    Michele Chi Super Dog Staff Member Super Moderator

    I agree with you. What happens if Zoey gets sick again? Will they do the same thing?
    Madeleinemom and TWadeJ like this.
  4. Derek3

    Derek3 Puppy

    Sounds like they didn't even have her checked out at all by the vet.
  5. Nat Ursula

    Nat Ursula Good Dog

    That all seems really messed up. First, why did they send their father to put the dog down? Nobody really knows what was said because the actual owner was not even present. Second, why did the clinic provide a receipt for Euthanasia. They should have called the family and told them what they were thinking about doing with the dog.
  6. Nat Ursula

    Nat Ursula Good Dog

    The Vet used the money for the cremation to save the dog! That is wrong. She should have called them back for sure!!!
  7. Novy

    Novy Little Dog Premium Member

    That's exactly what went through my head reading this. I am a bit appalled that the rescue let them have the dog back. I don't necessarily agree with how the vet did what she did, but these people are unworthy dog owners.
    TWadeJ likes this.
  8. TWadeJ

    TWadeJ Big Dog

    HUH??? HUGE assumption there. Guaranty the actual cost to save the dog GREATLY exceeded the $200 euthanasia bill. The family just suck. Vet's heart was in thr right place.
  9. Derek3

    Derek3 Puppy

    I believe the article said the vet used the fees paid to remove the tumor. Whether it was enough really doesn't matter I'm sure it wasn't. I don't think she should have wrote the receipt for the procedure if she wasn't gonna do it. The whole thing is just really weird.
  10. TWadeJ

    TWadeJ Big Dog

    No - the vet didn't act perfect but he saved the dog the owners wanted killed. Not even a close call in my book.
  11. Derek3

    Derek3 Puppy

    I agree with that, doesn't sound like the owners even had the tumor checked out. The vet should have given what she did as a option to surrender the dog. I don't think the family should have got the dog back.
    TWadeJ likes this.
  12. Mister

    Mister Little Dog

    I happen to disagree, no one here knows the family or the circumstances that led to them making the decision to pts their dog. Had something similar happen to myself with my old girl, who went downhill fast. Vet couldn't put his finger on the issue so to stop her (& my family's) suffering anymore, I finally booked her in to be pts, which was at the vets urging. Just so happened that a new vet had the appointment and he recognised what was wrong and how to treat her.
  13. Nat Ursula

    Nat Ursula Good Dog

    I can't say the owners wanted the dog to be killed. I think they believed the dog was suffering and had something that was not curable.

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