What happened to Stempy?
had a problem with bladder stones. This is a condition that needs to be
monitored and managed. There is much more to managing this condition
than just a diet change. (Read this at VeterinaryPartner.com
to learn about Stempy's condition.)
Stempy was already on a prescription diet from his previous vet due to
a previous problem with stones. This was dealt with by his prior vet
nonsurgically. We changed vets in the Fall of 2003 because we never saw
the same vet twice at our old clinic. We wanted a vet who would get to
know our dogs. It was then that we made the worst decision of our lives
in our choice of a new vet.
Ann Thomas - Rodeo Drive Veterinary Hospital (aka Rodeo Dr. Vet Rodeo Dr
Veterinary Hospital Canine & Cat Corral , Rodeo Drive Animal )
- was a solo practitioner close to home. We had started buying
Stempy’s prescription diet from Dr. Thomas in September 2003.
Since Dr. Thomas had never seen Stempy, she required us to provide his
records from his previous veterinarian in order to dispense his
prescription diet. (*-Note that
records from Dr. Thomas, she claims that his previous records
contained no mention of his bladder stone history. If that is the case,
then what in the world was she doing dispensing a prescription diet to
Stempy without ever seeing him? Isn't that a failure to establish a
vet/patient relationship?) Dr. Thomas sold us Stempy’s
prescription diet several times before doctor and patient ever met.
met Dr. Thomas (aka
Ann K Thomas DVM Ann Thomas DVM Ann K. Thomas DVM Ann Thomas,
DVM Ann K. Thomas, DVM Ann K Thomas, DVM Dr. Ann K. Thomas, DVM
) , of
Rodeo Drive Veterinary Hospital (aka
Dr. Vet Rodeo Dr Veterinary Hospital Canine & Cat Corral
Rodeo Drive Animal ),
for the first time under adverse circumstances. In
November of 2003, Stempy had a urethral obstruction (Dr. Thomas and the
Texas Vet Board need to read and reread and STUDY this link on urethral obstruction
link on canine retrograde urohydropropulsion: a standard of care
caused by a bladder stone blocking his urethra. This is a medical
Of course, all we knew at the time is that Stempy
go pee and he was very uncomfortable. Dr. Thomas was able to wash the
obstruction back to his bladder. As she should, she took radiographs to
see the stone, and she did a urinalysis. Based on the urinalysis, she
changed his diet. She sent Stempy home wearing a catheter to wait a few
days for a cystotomy to be performed. We informed Dr. Thomas of a few
seizure-like episodes Stempy had experienced in his past because we
were worried it would cause problems with his anesthesia. Dr. Thomas
responded to this information by saying, “Oh
Thomas denies this conversation ever occurred – we remember
vividly) Stempy had his cystotomy and recovered well from surgery.
Based on lab results, Dr. Thomas again changed Stempy’s diet.
Stempy had one additional urinalysis at one post surgical follow up
appointment that contradicted the lab results and her again changing
his diet. She paid no attention and should have changed his diet again,
but did not...she left him on a diet not even formulated for bladder
stones and had him on this wrong diet for the remainder of his life.
our extensive research after Stempy’s death (also see Consider
page of this website),
we learned that Dr. Thomas did not follow proper protocol starting with
this very first surgery. Dr. Thomas failed to take post surgical
radiographs after the cystotomy to verify removal of all stones. Dr.
Thomas failed to recommend quarterly urinalyses to monitor his urine.
This is a MUST for bladder stone patients as many patients form new
stones in the future. Dr. Thomas failed to recommend twice yearly
radiographs. This is a MUST with the goal being to catch new stones
forming while they are small enough to be removed non-surgically.
for yourself - many examples /recommendations from veterinary
professionals prove Dr. Thomas did not follow normal protocol: click here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here)
were several opportunities to recommend a urinalysis or radiograph to
us to monitor Stempy’s condition. Dr. Thomas never
recommended anything. (See Timeline
page of this website.)
March of 2005, Stempy again had a urethral obstruction. We were not
sure that is what it was at the time. Dr. Thomas failed to take
radiographs to ensure her diagnosis. She again washed the stone back to
the bladder to relieve the obstruction. A cystotomy was scheduled for
the following week and Stempy was sent home wearing a catheter again.
When we went to pick up Stempy post surgery, somehow the stone had
magically disappeared, so no cystotomy was performed. We were never
shown radiographs to back up Dr. Thomas’ claim. No future
monitoring was recommended or performed.
September 2005, Stempy again had a urethral obstruction that unblocked
itself just prior to going to see Dr. Thomas. Despite his prior
history, Dr. Thomas failed to take radiographs and failed to diagnose
bladder stones, even though she was told he was obstructed and had been
for a day until just prior to coming in. She said he just had elevated
sperm in his urine and sent him home. This event right here
FAILURE TO DIAGNOSE and is BELOW the standard of care ESPECIALLY with
his PRIOR HISTORY of stones WITH THIS VET!
please tell us, WHY wouldn't you take an x-ray when you have just been
told that he had been blocked for a full day AND that WE suspected
stones again? Stempy had already had TWO prior episodes WITH
This is a MAJOR FAILURE on her part. She must have had an aversion to
her x-ray machine - was it outdated? Looking back on his care, we
believe she purposely avoided using her x-ray machine multiple times -
when any other vet would have AT LEAST recommended an x-ray! VIOLATION?
We believe so. How could the Texas Vet Board just dismiss this case?.
TWO WEEKS LATER, Stempy again experienced a urethral obstruction from
most likely the SAME STONE. FROM MOST LIKELY THE SAME STONE THAT FIRST
OBSTRUCTED HIM BACK IN MARCH 2005! (Calcium Oxalate stones do
dissolve or just disappear - MAJOR FAILURE BY DR. THOMAS -
INEXCUSABLE!) She AGAIN failed to take radiographs to
confirm diagnosis, location, and amount. She FAILED to properly wash
the stone back to the bladder and tried jamming the catheter in to push
the stone back to the bladder. She stated in his records that she was
unable to collect a urine specimen. She sent Stempy home wearing a
catheter and scheduled a cystotomy for the coming week.
would she PASS a catheter and NOT be able to obtain a urine specimen?
In fact, how did she relieve the distended bladder caused by the
obstruction and yet NOT be able to obtain a urine specimen?
now know, she had LODGED the catheter to the stone, so much so that she
told us the she was unable to remove the catheter. So this begs the
question: How did she relieve the distended bladder? There was no
cystocentesis done. Did she damage his
urethra with the very forceful - and unsuccessful - catheterization?
The FAILURE to x-ray on this day is OUTRAGEOUS. Yet, the Texas Vet
Board looks the other way.
Thomas ONLY had permission to perform a cystotomy - nothing else. She
did NOT perform a cystotomy. She had lodged the catheter to the stone
with the forceful catheterization she had performed. She was unable to
remove the catheter. She told us that Stempy, himself, removed the
catheter, although this is not what she wrote in his records.She
performed an unauthorized procedure which she said was a perineal
urethrostomy. This is not the procedure she performed, as admitted by
the board. SO SHE DOESN'T EVEN KNOW WHAT SURGERY SHE
WAS SHE JUST MAKING STUFF UP AS SHE WENT ALONG? Her own vet tech stated
she had NEVER performed that type of surgery before. She cut our little
boy from his anus to his scrotum - a NINE cm incision - and NO NEW
permanent or temporary opening was made - as would be expected with a
urethrotomy or a urethrostomy. Remember - we had ONLY authorized a
cystotomy. THAT'S IT. NOTHING ELSE. As previously mentioned, three days
before this unauthorized surgery, Dr. Thomas had failed to wash the
stone back to the bladder and had instead lodged the catheter to the
stone. She would have known this if she would have taken a radiograph
three days earlier when he was brought in. Instead, Stempy was either
still obstructed for those three days or she had damaged his urethra
and/or bladder when she attempted the forceful
catheterization. Read this link on urethral obstruction
link on canine retrograde urohydropropulsion: a standard of care again.
Instead of referring us to a specialist, Dr. Thomas tried to fix her
own screwup. If Stempy was in an emergency situation the day
surgery, then SHE is the one who put him there with her FAILURES three
days earlier. INEXCUSABLE. Are these not violations? COME ON!!
was in extreme pain post surgery. We took him back to her EVERY DAY
post surgery. Stempy was not eating and was only dribbling urine. She
never properly examined him. She just kept changing his pain medicine.
Then she gave us a tranquilizer with no pain killing abilities
(Acepromazine) and led us to believe it was yet another pain killer. This tranquilizer lowers the seizure
threshold and is not recommended for brachycephalic breeds.
days post surgery, Dr. Thomas’ clinic DENIED care to Stempy
his condition was deteriorating. The clinic stated that
would be IN PAIN for 2 or 3 more days and then he would be fine and NOT
to bring him in - YET they had just taken him completely OFF of
painkillers! How INHUMANE is THAT? Violation? Evidently not in Texas.
very next morning, three days post surgery….Stempy passed
He was found unconscious and lifeless on his pillow. We rushed him to
this vet to no avail.
is our contention that Stempy passed away because of that unauthorized
“surgery” that Dr. Thomas had NEVER performed
would have NEVER have been needed had Dr. Thomas taken radiographs as
needed and properly diagnosed and treated his condition. There is NO
DOUBT in our minds that Dr. Thomas is 100% responsible for
Stempy’s preventable death. Her attitude and
properly care for him those 3 days after his unauthorized surgery - to
the point that the clinic DENIED Stempy care the night before he died -
is deeply disturbing. Did she WANT Stempy to die?
She butchered our little boy!
& Cindy Munson
all the various pages of this website for detailed information of the