Suing vet practice over amputation for Sooty

Amputee Sooty with James Townsend, whose partner is suing a veterinary practice.
Amputee Sooty with James Townsend, whose partner is suing a veterinary practice.
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THE owner of a puppy which had to have a leg amputated is suing a veterinary practice.

Medivet Group Ltd, whose Long Sutton branch dealt with poodle Sooty, has admitted that a delay in acting upon X-rays led to him having to have his front left leg removed.

James Townsend and Toy Poodle Sooty who lost a front leg'Photo:  SG260612-224TWwww.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto

James Townsend and Toy Poodle Sooty who lost a front leg'Photo: SG260612-224TWwww.spaldingtoday.co.uk/buyaphoto

But the firm is in dispute with 18-month-old Sooty’s owner, Avril Rayner, about the size of settlement.

Miss Rayner, of Foul Anchor, is claiming £3,866.76, which includes specialist costs, ten hydrotherapy sessions, loss of income and £500 for loss of amenity to the dog.

Yet The Veterinary Defence Society Ltd, which insures Medivet, has offered only £850 and a refund of £676.21 in treatment fees.

Miss Rayner and her partner James Townsend, of Station Road, Long Sutton, are angry that the firm is not willing to settle higher.

And so the two parties are heading for the small claims court in Boston next week.

The couple have paid almost £3,000 to pay for treatment after Sooty broke the leg falling down stairs when he was five months old.

At one point Medivet referred the dog to a specialist.

Mr Townsend said: “He decided to keep Sooty overnight. But when we got home we received a call saying the situation was so serious we only had two options – to have the dog put down or have the leg ampulated.

“It’s heartbreaking. Sooty couldn’t do anything a normal puppy could do – he couldn’t run around the garden because he fell over and we couldn’t take him for long walks.”

The break happened in January 2011 and the amputation was made several weeks later.

A legal document, signed by lead veterinary surgeon Tünde Kiss, says: “It is admitted that the delay in sending the X-rays....and consequent delay in referring the dog to an orthopaedic specialist until 14th March 2011 amounted to a breach of duty. It is further admitted that this breach of duty led to the amputation of dog’s front left leg.”