Man’s best release! Three-legged dog can enjoy walks again with the help of new prosthetic leg
A three-legged dog has been given a new life thanks to a prosthetic leg.
Miniature Schnauzer Freddie, who is ten years old, competed in agility competitions before his career ended when vets discovered a tumor in his forefoot.
His owner Bob Boyle, 70, from Cambridgeshire, was warned that Freddie could die unless the talented dog’s leg was amputated.
Freddie then went under the knife at Davies Veterinary Specialists, owned by Linnaeus, in Hitchin, Hertfordshire, in December in what was one of the first operations of its kind in the UK.
Just weeks after his procedure, Freddie was back on all fours with his new high-tech leg.
Miniature Schnauzer Freddie with his new prosthetic limb
Before vets discovered a tumor in his forefoot, 10-year-old Freddie competed in agility competitions
The prosthesis is strapped around the elbow joint of Freddie’s leg, allowing him to jump around as he did before surgery.
Heart-warming videos show Freddie playing football and walking again while undergoing intensive physiotherapy sessions.
When asked about his Miniature Schnauzer, Mr Boyle said: ‘At first we thought Freddie had bumped his paw or had a grass seed lodged in it.
“When we heard what was going on we were incredibly shocked and concerned as Freddie is very social and confident with other dogs and people so we were concerned about the effect this would have on him.
“But after the successful surgery and after only four to five weeks of using the prosthesis, he was walking, trotting and running around on his walks.”
Fitting the prosthetic limb over a partial amputation meant keeping Freddie’s four limbs for function rather than being a tripawd, which is the term for a three-legged dog or cat.
Diane Messum, Head of Physiotherapy at Davies, said: ‘Freddie has been the perfect patient from day one.
Freddie is undergoing rehabilitation at Davies Veterinary Specialists in Hitchin, owned by Linnaeus
“While many dogs will live fulfilled lives on three limbs, it is not without the body going through numerous biomechanical changes in order to walk and run on their own.
“After several discussions with Freddie’s oncologist Luca Schiavo, soft tissue surgeon Alberto Sesana and his owners, the surgery was very carefully planned and successfully completed.
“The surgical wound needed time to heal before Freddie came back for the casting of his limb, which would be made into the prosthesis, for which he remained completely still.
Freddie may not have liked it when the prosthesis was initially fitted or removed, but after much reassurance and treats, he now associates it with a limb that can give him the freedom to explore with his sister Gertie.
“He has learned to walk and trot again like he walked before his amputation and his skills now even include football.”