This special feline is one of the few animals in the world to receive prosthetic limbs.
Meet Vincent, an incredibly special feline who, despite having no hind legs, is now able to walk.
The handsome tabby cat is one of the few animals in the world to have received prosthetic legs. But, judging from the video above, he’s faring quite well with his new hardware.
The short-haired feline was gifted metal legs by surgeon Dr. Mary Sarah Bergh, an associated professor of Veterinary Clinical Sciences. In the video, he is three years old.
According to ABC News, Vincent’s good luck in life really began when he was adopted by Cindy Jones, an employee with Story Country Animal Shelter.
She relayed to the press:
“He was surrendered to the shelter by a lady who was camping in a local campground. … He was missing his hind legs from the mid-tibia down and when the lady brought him in, you could tell she was pretty worried.”
Cindy and the veterinarians are unsure if he was born with the defect or if it was the result of an accident.
It was Jones’ daughter, a veterinary student, who suggested they take Vincent to Iowa State University to undergo surgery and receive prosthetic legs.
Said Dr. Bergh:
“It’s the first one we’ve ever done and they’ve been very few people in the world that’ve tried to do something like this.”
Luckily, their efforts were successful. Now, Vincent’s case will be used as a reference for similar deformities in animals.
“I think this does open the door for us to be able to help other animals that have similar problems,” Dr. Bergh told 3DPrint.com. “And even what we’ve learned just through Vincent’s one case, we’ve actually refined the technique and the implants, so the next cases we do moving forward will be even more successful.”
Within days of the initial surgery, Vincent was walking with the prosthetic limbs which were donated by BioMedtrix, a veterinary orthopedics company. A follow-up surgery had to be repeated to install longer legs but, according to his caretaker, he’s now a “super happy cat.”
“He runs around. He plays with my dog, Oliver. He lays in a bed. He grooms. He’s just … a great guy,” she added. “In most shelters he would’ve been euthanized. He wouldn’t have had a future.”
Dr. Bergh was inspired to participate in the groundbreaking surgery to show people that there are many things that can be done to help animals.
People don’t have to assume there’s no hope,” she says.
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