The best of the worst pet health advice vet techs have ever heard

“I know my puppy doesn’t have worms because his breath doesn’t smell like worms.”

Reprinted with permission from Smart Flow Sheet.

Educating clients on pet health is one of the most important things veterinary professionals do on a daily basis. But, truth be told, people get pet health from the most unprofessional sources. These are the true stories of vet techs and their not so accurate conversations with pet owners about their health.

“Pepto kills the parvovirus so just give him that.” (We’ve also heard of bleach and charcoal options too.)

— Parker in Texas

“Feed them whole cloves of garlic to kill fleas and worms.” (And apparently any vampires.)

— Shannon in Pennsylvania

Client: “My dog/cat doesn’t go outside, so he/she won’t get heartworms.”
Me: “Where does your dog go to the bathroom?”
Client: “Outside.”

— Alicia in North Carolina

“Kerosene kills ear mites.” (It probably does, but not so sure you should actually put it in their ears!)

— Juliana 

“Lepto vaccines kill ALL French Bulldogs.” (We better pay better attention those inserts.)

— Ashley in Ohio

“Cats with two different color eyes are always blind.”

— also from Ashley in Ohio

“Beer for storm anxiety and bleach in the water dish to keep it from growing things.”

— Wendy in Virginia

“You get rid of mange with dirty/burnt motor oil.”

— Amber in South Carolina

“Light a match and hold it close to the rectum to make the dog poop.” Same guy asked if his dog that had died 6 months prior would have fully decomposed because if not, he was going to retrieve it and give it a bath… he didn’t want it to get dirty.

— Samantha in Virginia

“Coconut oil helps with dilated cardiomyopathy.”

— Kristin in Pennsylvania

“Large breed dog food … for a pug … because they are the largest of the small breeds.” (That actually seems pretty logical, right?)

— Christy in Illinois

“I know my puppy doesn’t have worms because his breath doesn’t smell like worms.”

— Shannon in Pennsylvania

Client: “I don’t need the kennel cough vaccine, I don’t board my dog.”
Me: “Miss, do you take your tiny dog places with you?”
Client: “Yes my baby never leaves my side.”
(facepalm)

— Amber in Oklahoma

“The stars have to be perfectly aligned and the dog needs to be outside all the time, in the heat, like in the south, to get heartworm.” What a client said to me when I told her that we have several heartworm positive dogs here (in the Midwest) and her pet needs to be on prevention.

— Katie 

“My cat doesn’t go outside so he/she doesn’t need a rabies vaccine.”

— Angela in Wisconsin

“My dog doesn’t have fleas because we live in a gated community.” (That must be some high-tech gate!)

— Terri in Texas

“Baking soda and vinegar are great for home euthanasia.” (Oh lord, please no.)

— Kristen in Ohio

“Diatomaceous earth causes tiny cuts on fleas, then the cuts get infected, and all the fleas die simultaneously.”

— Heather in Alberta

I had a client who told me she put honey on her dog’s carbuncles around his butt to heal them. (Needless to say, they didn’t heal)

—Louise in Michigan

Had a client with a dystocia say: “You don’t need to take X-rays; she’s having 4 pups because that’s how many nipples are swollen.” (While she’s holding one newborn.)

— Megan in Ohio

“No, I don’t need flea/tick preventive, we have a fenced-in yard.” (Does your fence keep the fleas and ticks out? Where is this magic fence, and how can I get one?)

— Josephine

A dog presented with spotty alopecia and itching: “The breeder said they were allergic to the limestone on their property.”

— Kris in Alaska

While all of these pet health tips seem very informative, they are not only hysterical, but some of them are downright scary. Keep educating your clients, fellow vet techs, and let’s hope maybe one day we will not need to redirect so many lost pet owners.

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