Feb/March 2018 Leeloo became poorly. At first the vet thought pancreatitis but soon realised there was a neurological/spinal issue, when she started struggling to walk and jump.
I was given an emergency appointment at the Animal Health Trust in Newmarket, (AHT) as she was in considerable pain, our vet believing that this could be a vertebrae impingement and we needed an MRI to be sure.
Pretty quickly the neuro specialist said this actually had nothing to do with her spine and he suspected swelling in her brain, she was blind in one eye by this point, couldn’t move her neck without yelping and disintegrating quickly. She was rushed off and I spent the rest of the day there waiting for news. My mother-in-law had been with me trying to keep my spirits up and my husband Stace arrived in the afternoon.
The MRI showed extensive swelling and the surgeon wanted to do a spinal tap to see if the swelling was due to poisoning or an autoimmune condition. But this was an incredibly risking due to the swelling and we were told it could kill her. But treatment would be very different for either prognosis, so we had to know.
Longest 30 mins of my life.
When she came round, we were allowed to see her before going home for the night. It was nearly midnight by now but she howled when I left, completely broke me.
Both Stace and I went back the following day and we were given the bad news that she had legions on her brain that would never heal, she may never get vision back in her eye but… it could have been a lot worse. We would have to wait for her spinal tap results to coming back from Paris, France but the specialist believed she had an autoimmune condition called Necrotizing Meningoencephalitis (NME) or more commonly known, Granulomatous Meningoencephalomyelitis (GME) which came with a prognosis at best of 2 years. I was devastated, not only that she had this condition (she was only 3) but the treatment to get her into remission was hit and miss at best and could take a toll on her small body.
But she was fighting, therefore I was going to fight as well.
After a week of IV chemo and strong prescription steroids and my visiting her everyday, I finally got to take her home.
Operation save Leeloo had begun…