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Leo has FIP

My beautiful baby Leo was diagnosed with wet FIP on 12.23.19. He has had so many problems from allergies, hematoma, itching, and scratching etc. He is the sweetest guy ever and we decided to do treatment with a drug called GS. We give him daily sub q injections for 84 days. He did not eat for 9 days, a feeding tube was placed and within hours of his first dose he was eating, drinking and playing. Anyways, does anyone else have a Savannah with extreme health problems!!!??? I’m starting to think and realize my breeder was NOT a reputable breeder. I have another Savannah from them as well who is VERY VERY skittish and not the personality of a savannah. I was told that if he is like that, that they did not socialize him well. I just tried to attach his records from
November- current but the file is too big.

Brigitte Cowell

Staff member
I'm so sorry to hear about the FIP (you don't mention how it was diagnosed) but I hope he does as well as Luna the Savannah did, she was one of the very first kittens treated with GS! Her owner has a blog for her but also a FB page,, if you are interested.

As to extreme health problems, yes and no. My F5 Zari has/had a mysterious immune condition. She's had two bouts where her blood marrow disappears and she has extreme anemia. The first time she was 18 months old and actually had a hematocrit of 3 (my vet says a cat shouldn't be alive) and it took 3 transfusions and antibiotics and steroids and anything else they could think of to stabilize her. Weirdly, the ELISA test for FeLV was positive and all the vets that my vet consulted (I love my vet) insisted she had to have FeLV. The IFA confirmatory test was negative, but they couldn't get a bone marrow sample (as there was nothing in her bone marrow scarily). My vet agreed with me that this didn't "fit" as she was three generations of my breeding and my cats obviously are indoor only. In any case we started chemotherapy assuming it was at the very least leukemia... but eventually as she recovered, so did my enquiring mind. My vet suggested that we send her records to a "second opinion", a vet oncologist he had worked with in the past and so we did. The report was amazingly detailed with research papers referenced and that oncologist was positive that Zari was NOT FeLV positive nor did she have leukemia. I transferred her care to the internal medicine specialist vet I had great history with (who was on vacation when Zari collapsed) and from there Zari recovered to be almost completely weaned off both steroids and cyclosporine (another immune suppressant)...we were able to spay her in that interim...but she had a relapse a year later out of the blue. After transfusions, with just steroids and cyclosporine we got her back and she's been stable now for four years. We've ruled out every known immune disorder, so obviously it's something not commonly seen in cats (or owners simply don't fight as hard, I refused to accept the FeLV diagnosis). So Zari has had an extreme health issue, but now she's a slightly chubby girl who will be 8 years old in May <3

You are correct that skittish is not a personality trait associated with Savannahs, they tend to be very social and interactive. Of course, there are always individual personalities, and sometimes undiagnosed health issues that can unsettle a cat and make them behave differently... so I don't want to jump in and assume that the issue was a lack of socialization by the breeder. Did you visit the breeder before getting your kittens, or how did you select your babies?

It would be lovely if you added some pics of Leo and your other Savannah too!


Staff member
I'm very sorry to hear about Leo having FIP but excited to hear that he is responding to the GS. I hope you will keep us posted on his progress!