Life

Disabled Kitten Receives 3D-Printed Wheelchair To Walk Once Again

Cassidy lost his back legs shortly after birth and was near death when rescued. Thanks to a number of kind volunteers, he is now healthy and can freely move around.


Technology is a wonderful thing. Earlier this September, an adorable kitten named Cassidy was found close to death and starving near a Canadian forest. After nine weeks of barely surviving on his own, he was taken into care by the non-profit cat sanctuary Tiny Kittens. 

Sadly, when he was rescued, Cassidy weighed less than half a kilogram (one pound)! The sanctuary was doubtful whether or not he would survive, let alone walk again. According to IFLScience, it is believed his mother ‘accidentally’ chewed off his legs shortly after birth when trying to remove his umbilical cord (massive fail). Due to the wounds, he then developed an E. coli infection that his depleted body was not strong enough to fight.

“I put a call out on Facebook to see if anybody might help us with some kind of sling or maybe even a wheelchair,” Founder of Tiny Kittens, Shelley Roche, told Global News. 

That’s when two inspired 17-year-old high school students, Josh Messmer and Isaiah Walker, decided to design and 3D-print a wheelchair for the kitten at their school.

After the project was completed and Cassidy was fit into the device, he was noted to be much happier. “Having the freedom to move is something he’s never had before,” said Roche.

Credit: Tiny Kittens/YouTube screenshot

Credit: Tiny Kittens/YouTube screenshot

The non-profit Tiny Kittens is run entirely by volunteers and provides sanctuary for homeless and abandoned cats. The organization also assists research projects on feral cats and cat overpopulation and uses social media to educate the public on responsible pet ownership (as well as flood the internet with more cute cat pictures).

This is only one instance 3D printing has been used to rehabilitate wounded animals. Earlier this year TrueActivist shared news of an eagle whose beak was shot off. Thanks to the wits of a designer and a dentist, she received a new beak and can now eat like a normal bird. However, one might argue that a tiny wheelchair for a disabled kitten is the cutest application of 3D-printing ever.

If you’re inspired, check out Cassidy’s progress through a live webcam and help Tiny Kittens continue their amazing work by donating here.

What are your thoughts? Comment below and share this positive news!


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