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Veterinarian Mac Dudley, whose customers accused him of hurting their pets during botched procedures at his Brooklyn Center animal hospital, said Thursday he may retire after strict limits were put on his practice by the state Board of Veterinary Medicine.
Dudley, who has sterilized more than 5,000 pets in his 34-year career, was recently forbidden from practicing unless he passes a 100-question test demonstrating his knowledge of diseases and medical conditions, according to a ruling made public this week.
Dudley can't operate on animals again unless he passes three surgical courses at the University of Minnesota's College of Veterinary Medicine. If he passes the test and completes the course work, he must still work under the supervision of a board-approved veterinarian for at least two years. The board said Dudley must prove that he can conduct himself in "a fit and competent manner."
Dudley and his brother, William Dudley, operated the Brooklyn Pet Hospital. The board revoked William Dudley's veterinary license in 2007 after at least 17 complaints about his work.
"Right now, I'm weighing my options," Mac Dudley said. "I'm 63. It might not be worth it for me to take a year of school for only two or three years of practice."
That would be fine with Loni Delmonico, who said her dogs screamed last year when Mac Dudley starting closing a wound without applying an anesthetic.
The board imposed the new limitations after Dudley failed to demonstrate surgical competence in March while performing four sterilization procedures in front of a board-approved veterinarian. Dudley was faulted for nine errors, including not properly monitoring patients with tubes in their throats, using an inappropriate surgical technique and not using the right amount of anesthesia.
He discounted the report as a "personal opinion" and insisted that he does not deserve discipline. Regarding the complaints against him, he said, "The only problem I had was one incision that opened up."
The board initially sanctioned Dudley for stitching the wounds on Delmonico's dogs without first applying an anesthetic. He also used the same unsterilized rectal thermometer, needle and suture material on both dogs.