A dog owner whose pet collapses and needs CPR every time it gets excited has launched a £25,000 appeal so her pooch can have innovative, life-saving heart surgery – by Japanese surgeons.
Desperate Samantha Hosker, 36, is terrified she will lose Rocco, after she found out he will need a special operation that is only available in the Orient.
Her beloved dog’s condition is so bad that he cannot even go on walks or he will get too excited and suddenly collapse with heart failure.
But she “has faith” in animal lovers who will sympathise and help her raise the huge funds to save the seven-year-old Jack-Russell and Chihuahua cross.
The freelance hairstylist and make-up artist said: “He is a beautiful dog with a beautiful temperament.
“He is very placid but energetic when meeting people.
“Rocco is just the kindest, loveliest dog – he is like my child.
“I never ask for help with money but I have faith there are good people out there – it’s not the money, it’s finding the right people.”
Samantha, originally from Sidmouth, Devon, but now living in Ascot, Berks, was first alerted to Rocco’s condition in April when he was taken for a check-up and vets discovered an irregular heartbeat.
“I had given him some food and I thought he was choking,” said Samantha.
“I waited to see if he would cough it up and he just collapses and his heart stopped.
“I had to think quickly and did CPR – I was breathing into his mouth.”
Rocco sprung back to life but collapsed on a further two occasions – prompting Samantha to repeat the CPR.
After taking him to the vets again, Samantha was told Rocco’s mitral heart valve was leaking and could only be fixed with a special operation in Japan.
If the complicated procedure – involving ten specialists – goes ahead, the dog will be able to live out his life expectancy of 16 years.
Rocco is currently on medication but there are signs he is getting weaker and Samantha is desperate to get the help he needs.
“It’s about finding the right people,” she said.
“Even if it’s the tiniest amount – I’m not going to give up until enough people find out and want to help.
“I would give up all my material possessions for Rocco.
“An animal life is still a life,” she added.
Visit gofundme.com/2rrvwuj4 to help Samantha’s cause.