PhotoPets are almost like members of the family for most people, and when they get sick, the concern is deep and real. Thats why many pet owners get very upset when they don't feel their pet got the best medical care.

"My daughter took her cat to Banfield Pet Hospital because she was throwing up all the time and losing weight,” Cheryl, of Burien, Wash., told ConsumerAffairs.com. “They ran a lot of blood work and said there was nothing wrong with her. She gradually got worse over the next year and a half. I took her to another vet and she was diagnosed with a cancerous growth on her kidney, causing her to be so sick. They said it was inoperable and she had to be put down. If Banfield had diagnosed her properly in the first place, her life may have been able to be saved.”

Cheryl also doesn't understand why her vet bill was $1,100 for two visits, when the hospital was unable to help her pet.

Where there's smoke...

D., of Hazlet, N.J., is the latest consumer to contact us about what she sees as a potential fire hazard in her Cuisinart coffee maker.

“My Cuisinart DCC1100 started smoking and smelling like an electrical fire,” D. said.” I unplugged it and put it outside. I called Cuisinart to see if there was a recall they said no, but it was still under warranty, so they would send me a new one. Now I am reading all these other complaints. There is a problem with this coffee maker.”

D. did the right thing when she contacted the company about the problem. Now, she needs to take the additional step and inform the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Taking nothing for granted

There's nothing simple about health care these days. Anthony, of San Diego, Calif., has an Aetna health insurance policy that he says is supposed to cover 100 percent all “routine” physical exams.

“Now I have received a bill from the lab facility stating that I owe money on two procedures performed, Anthony told ConsumerAffairs.com. ”After speaking with Aetna, they are stating that it is my responsibility to verify all procedures and lab work done to see whether they consider it 'routine' or not, and if they will cover it. It appears Aetna is now picking and choosing whatever procedures they want to cover in order to reduce their costs.”

Health insurance companies do, indeed, change their policies from time to time, and though it seems like a bother, the prudent thing is to check with your insurance company before each procedure to find out what is and is not covered. Beyond that, Anthony should check into the process for appealing a denial of claims. If his policy does, in fact, cover the procedure, perhaps he can have the denial reversed.

Won't take no for an answer

Lee, of Colorado Springs, Colo., got a telemarketer call from Mortgage Investors Corporation saying they could provide competitive terms on a mortgage refi. Thinking she had nothing to lose, she agreed to a meeting with a sales representative in her home. Big mistake, she now says.

“This was only supposed to take about 20 to 30 minutes of our time,” Lee said. “This pushy sales person stayed for over three hours trying to get us to sign a document. “We said no, not interested. We like what we have currently better. He called his supervisor to talk to my husband still we said no. Since this meeting from this company we continue to be called every day, three times a day. I;m sick of the calls and I told them how I felt about their tactics and to stop calling. It stopped for 2 weeks and now started again I feel very harassed and angry over this. I have blocked the numbers and they still find a way to call!

Here's a tip: if you allow a sales person into your home to make a sales presentation, they almost have to make a sale in order to keep their job. In-home pitches are almost always a bad idea. In Lee's case, she needs to report what she feels is harassment to Colorado Attorney General John Suther's office.


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