Main fundraiser photo

Gandalf bladder surgery at Cambridge to survive.

Donation protected
Every aspect and fact within this fundraiser can be evidenced and is true.

UPDATE: 31st May 2023

Post OP care.

Today, the vet at Cambridge said we need to buy Gandalf post surgery dog suits.

Gandalf cannot wear bellybands for the time being, but needs to be wearing post surgery dog suits as the benefits are second to non. They will help him heal in comfort and give him support and to prevent wound licking, plus accidentally pulling out the bladder tube thus creating an emergency.
Whilst wearing the bodysuit, he won't have any restrictions and can move freely whilst his surgical sites heal both in his bladder and external abdomen. He will be allowed to wear a pad (as his penis may dribble) which will fit snuggly in the dog suit.

In 6-8 weeks he will be going back to have another surgery and a permanent shorter tube put in place.
There will be a separate quote for this second part of his lifesaving surgery.

UPDATE: 30th May 2023.

Gandalf is booked for his surgery tomorrow 31st at Cambridge Veterinary Hospital.
The quote for this first initial phase, was Consultations with Specialists, for all the investigations, MRI scans, Ultrasound scans, bloods, exrays and biopsies, plus sedation and general anesthetic, was between £3,500 and £4,000.
With all the wonderful donations and fundraising we achieved this.

He now is booked for lifesaving bladder surgery and the quote is between £3,500 and £4,500. Which includes, a general anaesthetic, overnight stay, bloods, fluids, bladder biopsies, a Cystostomy, exrays etc.

UPDATE: 22nd May 2023.

I've been interviewed by Peterborough Evening Telegraph today.

UPDATE: 19th May 2023.
Gandalf has started steroids today, along with another course of antibiotics. This was instructed by his Neurology Specialist Bruno. At Cambridge Veterinary Hospital which will take him towards his planned surgery date 31st May 2022.

UPDATE: 12th May 2023.

This week Gandalf started another 2 weeks of antibiotics after which he will have steroids and another 2 weeks of antibiotics leading up to surgery on 31st May as instructed by his Specialist. Please keep donating to ensure that the surgery will carry on. .

UPDATE: 5th May 2023.

Scheduled admission for surgery Wednesday 31st May at 10.30


The Neurology Specialist rang last night as all discussions have been had and results reported on and are back.

His bladder wall and urethra are thickened. He has cystitis.
He believes he's had this urine issue as a baby, so it's caused an overdistended bladder and permanent damage.
If treated as a baby, he wouldn't have this today. He has no strength in his bladder. A non functioning bladder.
He's discussed with everyone, and now it comes under medical soft tissue. This is where Dr Laura Owen comes in. Neurology will still be involved. Plus Medical and soft tissue.

They can give him back function to his bladder by addressing the bladder itself and not the spinal chord which they've discussed at length and they couldn't take the chance with his spine in case he wouldnt get up again afterwards so they've ruled that out.

The bladder:

It's called a Cystostomy.

The soft tissue surgeon will put in a tube from his bladder out of his abdo wall. A stoma.
The 1st tube is longer to see how he responds, and then about 6 weeks they will put in a shorter long-term tube, which will need replacing every
1-1/2 years.
His penis will still drain pee, but the tube will empty it completely and prevent frequent nasty infections happening. He still will get a uti because of the tube but not as often or as painful. No where near like he is doing.

The professor and team believe and are credible that he has a thickened bladder wall that the infections are hiding within. Acting like a shelter of nest to shield the infection from the antibiotics so as soon as the course is finished it grows virulent and back we go again.

Whilst he's having the tube, they will take a biopsy of his bladder wall to confirm this and see the amount of infection living within it.

Leading up to surgery:

They want him to have a more aggressive, longer course of marbocyl he's on now.
Which will temporary fix the UTI, then after a week to stop onsior for 2 days then he's going to be put on steroids to deflame his tissues, bladder urethra, etc.
This goes on for a month. Then he goes back to Cambridge for the surgery.

I'm to increase the bladder med to a half x3 a day.

The cost for both tubes, general and biopsies will be £3-4,000, plus aftercare if needed.
He will need this amount on top of what we've raised.

UPDATE: 27th April 2023.

Ive got an update from today.

He's got 4 main problems, so far.

He's got spina bifida.

He's got fluid in his spinal chord compressing it.

He's got a pocket of fluid on his spinal chord in his back with a pocket above his chord and a fluid distention in his neck on his chord.

Plus his bladder isn't emptying.

At the moment there's no ectopic however, it's not definite, this could change once scans are reported on.

The Specialist is awaiting the report of the few hundred MRI scans plus he's going to chat to one of the top Neurology professors in the Country, about the surgical option on his back as well as all other options.

Plus chat to a specialist in Brighton about putting in an implant to empty his bladder. To see if he fits the criteria and if it would be beneficial in this case.

I've got medication to fire up the nerves in his bladder to ( the theory is) to help him pee normally. Low dose first. To empty his bladder so no infection or to reduce infection rate.
He's to continue with cisapride and with chappie but to add bran into his meals. Then to adjust cisapride. accordingly.

Once the radiologist has reported the scans and The Neurology Specialist has discussed with the Proffessor about plan going forward we will know more about his future.

UPDATE: 26 April 2023

Bruno, the Specialist Neurologist at Cambridge VeterinaryHospital looking after Gandalf, just rang.

The scanner was working so as Gandalf was starved, they went ahead and did the MRI and all the rest. They've only just finished.

He said Gandalfs condition is very complicated

He said there's 100's of images that the specialist radiographer needs to put together to come to a conclusion.

Looking at them, he can see 3 problems that stand out.
However, he wants to get all confirmations first before committing but was happy to tell me what he's seeing.

1. He has a meningocele malformation in his lower back and neck. There are gaping holes between 2 vertebrae in both neck and lower back, with nerves that are not connecting, hence causing incontinence and gait abnormalities.

2. An accumulation of spinal fluid running inside the spinal column from tail to neck. Compressing the spinal chord.

3. A pocket of fluid in one area above the spinal column.

There is no ectopic ureter. The bladder is brilliant.
The urine culture shows no infection, puss, or blood.

He's going to speak to the top specialist in this field along with the report from the radiologist about the MRI to find out the plan going forward and what they can do.
Whether Surgery, maybe???.

There are also medications that can help the bladder in cases like these.
The idea is to make him pee normally and to stop infections. So, whether a combination of surgery and medication or just the medication.

The Specialist Bruno says he's on call tomorrow, but ideally, he wants to see us in person and discuss results and findings and to confirm a diagnosis.

Gandalf is sleepy. He's got through well. No issues there.

I asked if Gandalf can be saved, he said we are hoping???

Update: 25th April 2023.

Gandalf went to Cambridge Veterinary Hospital today. He saw a Neurology Specialist. He had a thorough examination and discussions with a Medical Specialist.
He has been admitted today, to have a general anaesthetic tomorrow with a view to having an MRI on his neck and lower back, plus ultrasound, a cystocentesis, taking urine direct from the bladder, blood work and fluid taken from his spine. The MRI together with the ultrasound to check for any abnormalities of his bladder to confirm or rule out ectopic ureter, plus any issues with his spine.
Please please keep donating. We still have a longway to go with his investigations and treatment.

Update: 11th April 2023.

Gandalf saw the vet yesterday. He's been given Marbocyl antibiotics and paracetamol. The vet said he needs to be seen urgently by a specialist, and should have been seen in January at the latest, and if he has an ectopic ureter theres an 80-90 % chance of a success rate. She also said, this is the last lot of antibiotics he can have without a referal because hes had them now for 6 months on and off, the infection will come back as the problem is being masked and not investigated.

After the course, I'm to take him back to the vet to be euthanized if not seen by a Specialist. She said " time is running out for him"

Please, please share and donate if you can.

Updated: 9th April 2023.

Gandalf has just come down with another urine infection. Hes had to see an emergency vet due to out of hours. Also hes lost weight. He was 22.8kg now 18.5 kg. I know times are difficult but please share and donate if you can.

Hi my name is Sharlene. 11 months ago I became a Forever Foster to a Bulldog named Buster. He was dumped on the street in China as a baby, left to fend for himself. Unwanted and scared. He was captured by barbaric Meat Men for slaughter for food. Trapped in a tiny cage. He endured cruelty.
24 hours from slaughter he was rescued.
He was poorly. Fighting a severe skin disease and starvation. Once stable he went into a foster in China for rehabilitation. He developed severe leg ulcers on his hocks. Deep and large due to the fact of lying in his own urine and faeces. He had 2 blood transfusions. Once stable it was decided he would come to the UK. He left China and travelled to Italy into quarentine. Left again in a cage. Many days and nights. Finally he was flown to England. He arrived in pain, crumpled and disorientated.
A vet check. He was 10.4kg. Had lost half of his body weight. His deep leg ulcers were a concern. His fur overall was yellow due to being caged in urine and faeces.

It was only 2 days later I became his Forever Foster Parent. Buster became Gandalf the White.

I nursed him day and night. Bathed daily, creamed his hocks, he was both faecally and urine incontinent. I put on him pads and belly bands, that the rescue provided for him. He was so traumatised, both mentally and physically.
The rescue are supporting his medical needs, and have been for 11 months, but its just masking the problem and not finding the true cause of the issue.
Im in need of help raising the money for the course of recommended specialist treatment, hence why I've taken it upon myself to set up the gofund.
The delay in specialist treatment and a failure to have him referred sooner has caused a great deal of stress and pain. 6 months of antibiotics and now resistance.
Hes faecally incontinent but recently had a blockage overflow which had to be surgically removed under general anesthetic. Hes been put on cisapride to help with his motility function to prevent anymore blockages.

Since October last year he has been getting reoccurring urine infections. Identified as proteus mirabilis. Hes had 3 courses of synulox antibiotics which at 2 week intervals keeps returning. He has now developed a resistance to Synulox. He's had urine cultures but the bacteria is persistent. Hes Just finished 2 courses of myocarb antibiotic. He is now on his 3rd course of myocarb. Antibiotic and paracetamol.

The vet has insisted he needs another urine culture taken direct from the bladder a cystocentesis under sedation. He also may have an ectopic ureter which could be causing the persistent reoccurring urine infections, which if proven, can be cured by surgery.

The vet said he must be refferred to a specialist. He will be given an MRI or CT scan with contrast. Assessed for a neurological disorder or an ectopic ureter. The tests will be carried out which includes his faecal incontinence.

If he doesn't have this urgent help his prognosis is poor. Euthanasia.

He has come a long way in the 11 months with me. I adore him. My heart breaks for him. He survived being dumped on the street in China, the meat market, illness, quarantine, travelling thousands of miles. We have both travelled this 11 month journey together.
We, both Gandalf and myself are asking for your help to help this poor boy, through no fault of his own, to live. He wants to live.
This is a vets outline of what he needs
• repeat urine Culture and Sensitivity test whilst he is still on antibiotics to confirm clearance of UTI. The urine sample will need to be collected under sedation/general anaesthetic via cystocentrsis.
It is very important to note his overall condition and welfare remain major concerns:
• his recurring UTI has not been investigated, which was advised back in October 2022. Our current working diagnosis is that an ectopic ureter is the underlying issue, causing ongoing incontinence and hence predispose him to recurring UTI. This needs to be investigated and corrected otherwise another episode of UTI will happen in no time. His UTI's are already developing antibiotic resistance so this investigation cannot be delayed any further
• The underlying cause of his mega-colon is not being looked into.There could be a neurological issue underpinning his constipation.
• important to note urinary incontinence can be caused by ectopic ureter, neurological disease, or both
Moving forward he will need to be referred to a multi-disciplinary hospital, with internal medicine and neurology specialities.

He is likely needing a contrast CT scan, but if his prognosis is guarded, then euthanasia.

Please can you kindly donate to help him.


  • Ric Brooks
    • £20 
    • 1 yr
  • Ric Brooks
    • £35 
    • 1 yr
  • Soraia Gordo
    • £10 
    • 1 yr
  • pauline gallagher
    • £5 
    • 1 yr
  • Suzanne Tomlinson
    • £35 
    • 1 yr

Organizer and beneficiary

Sharlene Hull
Philip Weiss

Your easy, powerful, and trusted home for help

  • Easy

    Donate quickly and easily

  • Powerful

    Send help right to the people and causes you care about

  • Trusted

    Your donation is protected by the GoFundMe Giving Guarantee