Summer-Rose Mackay, 11, with her pet caboodle Ruby, 6.
Summer-Rose Mackay, 11, with her pet caboodle Ruby, 6.

FLOOD AFTERMATH: Girl with heart condition could lose pet

THE floodwaters' aftermath cruelly put Summer-Rose Mackay's companion pet on death row.

Ruby the caboodle is to be put down Monday after catching a tetanus infection caused by a migrating grass seed splinter.

But little Summer-Rose is suffering too.

The 11-year-old girl from Myrtle Creek near Rappville has a rare heart condition requiring urgent surgery.

Where people normally have two electrical nodes in their heart to regulate rhythm, Ruby has three, causing her heart to beat up to 180-beats minute. 

Her mother Nicola Mackay, 49, said Lady Cilento Hospital surgeons hope to burn one of the electrical nodes out.

"We're just cruising on the hope that nothing bad goes wrong," Mrs Mackay said.

"Her heart could have a bleed, she might need a pace maker - surgeons are supposed to tell you a 100 things that could go wrong.

"It's all frightening for mother and child."

Summer-Rose Mackay pictured with her sister, Harmony, 13.
Summer-Rose Mackay pictured with her sister, Harmony, 13.

Summer-Rose first began to show symptoms two years ago, intermittently turning pale, losing focus, and suffering shortness of breath.

Ruby became a closer companion dog during this devastating time.

"The girls push her around in prams, cuddle her and sleep with her, she's practically there on every adventure," said Mrs Mackay.

"Summer-Rose has been throwing up with worry that mummy may have to put Ruby down, so it's affecting her."

Ruby the six-year-old caboodle is due to be put down tomorrow.
Ruby the six-year-old caboodle is due to be put down tomorrow.

Due to the impending costs associated with Summer-Rose's surgery in Brisbane, Mrs Mackay can't afford Ruby's $1500 - $4000 treatment.

"(Nicola) is a single mum with a mortgage, she does everything on her own, she's an amazing super woman, and she really can't afford this," said Mrs Mackay's friend, Amanda Floyd.

Donate directly to the vet or contact Amanda Floyd for information: 0421 564 360. 

Daily Telegraph reported this week Health Minister Brad Hazard said there was "a high level of concern" about people contracting tetanus and other bacteria during the flood clean-up.



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