3D Printing Helps Handicapped Rescue Dog Run For The First Time Using Prosthetics

Thanks to the science of 3D printing, a rescue dog learned to run for the first time using prosthetic legs. The video above shows off one of the many uses of the expanding technology — in this case — for the creation of artificial limbs, citing a report from WFAA.

Tara Anderson, the director of CJP Product Management, 3D Printing, came across Derby several months ago. She heard about the animal’s plight through a rescue group. Through a contact with the agency, she combed through photos of the dog and drew near to the handicapped animal when she heard its story. Moved to tears by the dog’s situation, she agreed to help the pooch live a better quality of life.

Derby was born with deformed front limbs. They were not fully formed, which prevented the dog from having full range of motion.

In the beginning, Anderson and her team outfitted the dog with a cart that allowed the energetic animal to get around without hobbling. However, the device limited Derby’s movement and didn’t allow it to play with other dogs due to the bulk of the apparatus.

She then teamed up with an animal orthopedic doctor to develop a prosthetic device that was based on a dog’s fluid range of motion and its anatomy. The end-game was to give the dog an ability to run around for the first time — and it worked.

Anderson and her team created limbs that mimicked the “Running Man,” but were flexible enough with a round base that the dog didn’t run the risk of digging his limbs into the soil. Using several specialized 3D printers, the team was able to create artificial limbs for the dog, who is now running around for the first time like a puppy.

Today, Derby runs three miles daily, thanks to the marvels of 3D printing. Its owners are having a hard time keeping pace with the vibrant animal. Check out the video above and share your thoughts about the intervention.

[Image via: ABC7 News]