My 3 year old house cat Julius has a severe ear
hematoma. He has had it for about a week. It was not red, nor did it seem to have any pus/etc but it did have a needle size hole (maybe our other cat hit him with a sharp claw?).
We had have been out of town and came for several days and now the ear has a bloody discharge so we went to vet.
I did some online research while waiting and it said cat hematomas are more rare than dog etc and often caused by shaking their head due to some kind of ear infection
(i now realize he has been doing this past couple of months).
It indicated it could be a typical bacterial infection (he has had an eye infection in the past) or possibly caused by ear mites.
It also indicated it would need to be professionally drained and/or require surgery to eliminate the possibility of reswelling.
However, when I took my cat to the doctor, the vet walked in and without looking at my car immediately said
"Must do surgery."
I asked about determining the Cause of the hematoma and the vet proceeded to talk to me like I was an idiot and said there was no way he could determine the cause ... I asked "can't you look in his ear? Take a swab? Do a culture? Check for ear mites or other sources of infection? Look to see the Cause otherwise it might happen to his other ear or my other animals. Also, if we identify the Cause and find its treatable he may not need surgery, he may just need antibiotics and to have the ear drained. I understand surgery May be needed but it May Not and no need to put him through that much less the expense."
(FYI I had just seen a vet do a culture which identified ear mites on YouTube so I know it's possible).
He kept saying Surgery Surgery Surgery and left us with the nurse.
I explained my concerns to the nurse who left to relay my concerns and they the vet came back to say that After the surgery, for an additional fee, he could do a test on the ear to determine the source of the infection ... ?
I had already paid the office visit and needed to get Julius his rabies vaccine (a renewal for his license) so asked if we could get his vaccine today and do surgery tomorrow (I gave the excuse he had been eating all day but really I wanted a second opinion).
The nurse said no problem but then the vet came in to say he couldn't do the vaccine before the surgery as there may be complications.
He says we needed to come in for surgery tomorrow then several weeks after he was healed we could come back for a vaccine.
I called several other vets but they were closed/closing.
I understand Julius May need this surgery but without looking I think it's premature and feels like money-grubbing reflex instead of legitimate concern for my cat.