Animal Orthotic and Prosthetic Stories

At Specialized Pet Solutions, we want to help restore mobility, one pet at a time. Our furry friends that need an orthotic or prosthetic deserve to run and play again, especially after not being able to do so for so long. We love seeing the joy in both pets and owners when an animal is able to move as they once did, or when they’re no longer hindered by a missing limb or deformity that has affected them their entire life.

With knee braces, stifle braces, and more for dogs, cats, horses, goats, and more, we can provide the right fit for your animal. We’ve worked with countless people to find the ideal product for their pet, and there’s no need we can’t meet. We love hearing the stories of how these animals have had their lives improved by the application of an orthotic or prosthetic. Keep reading to learn more!

Dog and Cat Prosthesis and Orthotics

Dogs and cats are the most common household pets in the world. If you have a canine or feline companion that needs an adaptive device such as a knee brace, hock brace, or prosthetic leg, you want to find the right fit.

There are several great stories of dogs and cats having their lives improved by assistive devices. We’ve talked about Cassidy the Dog and Oscar the Cat before, but there are countless other stories of dogs and cats whose lives changed after getting the right device.

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Edward the Pug: Edward was born with three legs and a stump, and after a rather rough start to life, he was one of the first animals to be fitted with a prosthetic leg. He had a peg-leg and harness that was designed by Martin Kaufmann, an animal prosthetics expert who was based in America.

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Dymka the Cat: Dymka was found on the side of the road in Siberia, and had to have her legs amputated due to frostbite. Veterinarians and scientists from Russia’s Tomsk Polytechnic Institute 3D-printed four titanium legs that were implanted into Dymka’s leg bones, helping her to walk again. She can run and use the stairs, and has bonded with Rhyzik, the first cat to have four titanium prosthetic legs.

Horse and Goat Adaptive Devices

People around the world have horses and goats as pets and livestock. Ranchers use horses for moving cattle and other purposes, and goats can be used for everything from milk to weed control. In the past, if a horse were to break its leg or suffer an injury, there was often no other choice than to put it down. However, stories like that of Riley the Mare have shown that a horse, along with other farm animals, can survive with the right prosthetic device.

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Valentino the Goat: Valentino lives at the Serenity Animal Farm in Clanton, Alabama. After he broke his front left leg and it became infected, a veterinarian had to amputate it. Valentino was fitted with a temporary prosthetic, but it didn’t provide the necessary stability and mobility. Adam Williams, the prosthetist, created a new leg for Valentino composed of carbon fiber, titanium, and stainless steel. Now Valentino is able to be as normal of a goat as he can be!

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Bet on a Star: Bet on a Star is a horse that suffered a waterborne disease and infection after standing in water for days as a result of Hurricane Irma in 2017. His barn in Florida was destroyed by the hurricane, and the disease forced doctors to have to amputate his foot just above the hoof. Also known as “81” (being the 81st foal of his sire), Bet on a Star was fitted with a prosthetic leg designed by Dr. Ted Vlahos. 81 now has a new life as a therapy horse!

Adaptive Options for Air and Sea Creatures

While many land animals, such as dogs, horses, and more, have been helped by braces and prosthetics, air and sea creatures also need help from time to time. We featured Beauty the Bald Eagle and Fuji the Dolphin on another page, both of which suffered life-threatening conditions, but were given new life through adaptive devices. Other land and sea animals have been saved through the use of prosthetics, and we know you’ll love reading some of these stories.

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Bagpipes the Penguin: Bagpipes injured his left foot in 2007 when it became caught in a fishing net in the South Pacific Ocean. Wildlife veterinarians amputated the foot, and Bagpipes lived for several years with just one foot. As a Little Blue Penguin, Bagpipes wasn’t easy to fit for a prosthetic, as the species can be aggressive, but doctors were able to measure and fit him with a plastic foot that allows him to swim. The foot also has rubber that provides grip while Bagpipes is walking on land.

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Pete the Parrot: Pete had an encounter in 2016 with a fox that left him missing his left foot. His owners rushed him to Penn Vet near Philadelphia for treatment, where Pete had the rest of his left leg amputated below the knee. Doctors were able to design a custom prosthetic for Pete to give him the best chance at a normal life. Parrots can live well into their 60s, and Pete’s new leg could provide him with the opportunity to live a normal lifespan. 

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Goody the Sea Turtle: Goody lost one of her flippers after becoming entangled in fishing gear. After being rescued by scientists at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Goody now has a prosthetic flipper that allows her to swim and maneuver normally. While Goody will likely never return to the sea, she does have a better quality of life and has given doctors hope that other turtles can benefit from the same type of prosthetic devices.

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Mister Stubbs the Alligator: Since alligators are both land and water creatures, they rely on their legs and tails to walk and swim. Mister Stubbs was injured as part of an illegal animal-trafficking network, and lost his entire tail. Thanks to 3D printing, Mister Stubbs was fitted with a new tail that allowed him to walk, swim, and float like normal.

Choosing The Right Devices for Your Animals

Whether you need braces for an injury to one of your animals, or a pet has lost a leg, our team is here to help you choose the right adaptive devices. Each animal is unique, which is why all of our orthotic and prosthetic products are cast to the specific animal’s body. We’ll send you a casting kit with everything you need, and you can work with your vet to take the cast and send it back to us for manufacturing. Once your animal’s device is finished, we’ll ship it to you right away.

We know that it’s not easy to watch an animal suffering as they deal with a deformity or injury, which is why we’re dedicated to helping restore mobility to your pet as soon as possible. We want them to have a long, happy life, free from pain for them and uncertainty for you as their owner. Our products range from stifle, hock, and tarsus braces for dogs to large prosthetics for horses and other animals.

If you have any questions about our adaptive devices and how they can help your animal, please feel free to contact us right away. Our team is always here to help however we can. Be sure to check out our Gallery to see some of the animals we have helped!

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