Anonymous asked in PetsDogs · 1 month ago

if my perfectly healthy puppy dies in surgery at the vet can I sue?


This hasn't happen to me, i'm asking in the event it does happen. During a spay.

18 Answers

  • 1 month ago

    No--because surgery of ANY kind contains inherent risks to the animal. ALL VETS will have you sign a release before surgery that explains this. And you must sign, or they will not do the work needed. You can't sue a vet for problems encountered during surgery or because of it---unless you can absolutely PROVE neglect or mistreatment. Malpractice does happen, but it's rare among vets--and it's even more rare during standard, neutering procedures. 

    And unless you have a medical degree yourself, you probably won't prove malpractice. 

  • 1 month ago

    Sure.  It will cost you a bundle of money but if another vet believes they were negligent or careless and you can find a lawyer to take your case, go ahead.  Start by reporting the vet to their licensing board.

    Source(s): Certified Paralegal, with 25+ years' experience.
  • 1 month ago

    Why would  a PERFECTLY HEALTHY puppy be needin surgery  do ya reckon? 

  • 1 month ago

    • "if my perfectly healthy puppy dies in surgery at the vet can I sue?"

    💥1: Which nation do you live in? If Australia or the Soviet or the USA: Which STATE within that nation?

    As you didn't check whether you had started with a capital letter, I suspect that you are in the USA.

    To an outsider, it appears that the US Constitution gives every citizen of the USA (well, maybe only those of them who believe that there IS a divine God...) the divine right to sue anybody and anything, regardless of what the alleged crime or offence or sin was, and whether they have any evidence to support their belief that "somebody done done me wrong":

    Youtube thumbnail

    Most lawyers there will - if they assess that the complainer can, win or lose, PAY the lawyer's fee - agree to represent the complainant.

    Here are some more questions for YOU to answer:

    💥2: What surgery was a "perfectly healthy puppy" receiving? And at what puppy AGE did YOU deem it necessary?

    💥3: Did you STUDY the Consent Form before signing it?

    💥4: Did you have a vet at a DIFFERENT clinic conduct an autopsy then provide a certificate stating what the cause of death was? If so: What WAS the actual Cause of Death recorded on that independent vet's certificate? Does THAT constitute "negligence" in your part of the world?

    💥5: If it does: Can you afford the cost of both a lawyer to represent you in Court, and the fee of the vet (who wrote the Cause of Death autopsy certificate) to spend a day in Court to explain that to the magistrate or judge? There is probably also a fee to lodge the intention to sue (magistrates & judges and Court Clerks expect to be paid). Will your friends want a fee to testify in Court for you about the pup's health leading up to the surgery?

    💥6: What witnesses can you produce to testify to the pup's healthiness in the days before the fatal surgery?

    💥7: How much will you be awarded if you WIN the case? Will that pay the fees of your lawyer plus the vet who testifies in Court on your behalf? Plus maybe the fees of friends who testify in Court as to your pup's health before the surgery was done?

    💥8: How much DID the pup cost you? Was it bought as (1) a potential show winner & producer of top quality pups, (2) a potential winner in training competitions, (3) a potential guardian, or herding dog, or tracking dog, or (4) a pet-only companion?

    No need to tell us the answers.

    I'm pretty sure that your answers to my 1, 2, 3 and 5 will convince you that you WON'T win the case.

    Even if it doesn't, I'm pretty sure that just checking with a lawyer, and with the vet who performed the autopsy & wrote the Cause of Death Certificate, and with your friends, as to what their likely fees would be, will convince you that their combined fees will exceed the cost of whatever money you hope to be awarded. It will certainly exceed the cost of purchasing a BETTER pup than the one you started with.

    So, once you've done that thinking, all that remains is to decide which of us was the most help in making up your mind, then awarding that Answerer the "Favorite Answer" points. (Me, I hope!)

    🤓🤢👺UPDATE for [Mist]👺🤢🤓:

    Tough titties, kid. Maybe YOU should turn the volumn down - or learn HOW to turn the volume down!

    Unless you are the Asker, the song wasn't FOR you. I personally love the music of Ella, Louis, and many others from the sto about the start of the 1960s era. However, it was that song's TITLE that was the message I wanted to give.

    Kreaky Kiwi - first pup in 1950, GSD trainer & breeder as of Easter 1968

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  • 1 month ago

    I am sure you signed something that says not as there are risks to any surgery.

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Yes, you CAN sue for negligence if the necropsy indicates negligence.  Why did a healthy puppy have surgery?

    My dog died during a tooth cleaning.  He was relatively young, had no problems, had a heart attack.  As upset as I was there was no negligence.

    Dogs are property, like a chair.  Value is what the dog was worth on the "open market."  Judge Judy awards damages, but she's an arbitrator, not a Judge.

  • 1 month ago

    Other than a spay or neuter..  Why would a "perfectly healthy" puppy need surgery?

    You "can" sue anyone for anything..  Whether or not you'd win is another matter.

    Surgery has risks...  So you wouldnt win simply because the puppy died.   Youd have to proove that the vet was somehow negligent, and the negligence is what led to the puppy's death.

  • keerok
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    First, a perfectly healthy pup does not require surgery. Second, before the actual surgery, you will be required to sign a disclaimer freeing the vet from such responsibility.

  • 1 month ago

    Going under anesthesia is always risky.  Some dogs are like some people & have fatal reactions to the anesthesia.  It was something in your pup that couldn't take the anesthesia.  IT was not the Vets intention.  It was something wrong with your pup.  You cannot sue over that, it was not the Vets fault this pup has the reaction.  This happens, I don't know the percentages but it is not rare.

    I don't think you have grounds for a lawsuit.  Some over the counter dewormers are deadly to some dogs, too.  I am sorry this has happened to you but it did & it is not the Vets fault.

  • *****
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    You can sue for anything you want. Would you win? Only if you could prove the vet was negligent. Surgical complications do happen, even when everything is done right.

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