How do you make a dog wheelchair?
Most people would not even know where to start when it comes to asking that particular question. That is probably why so many owners of disabled pets simply resort to purchasing a pre-made wheelchair.
However, one 22-year-old man in California apparently decided to take a different route by turning a dog wheelchair into a DIY project as a gift for his girlfriend’s dog Benny.
Man makes wheelchair for girlfriend’s paralyzed dog
— UPI.com (@UPI) February 18, 2016
UPI reports that James Stewart Paniagua built a dog wheelchair for Briana Ibarra’s disabled dog, who recently lost the use of his back legs, out of PVC Pipes.
The mere thought of taking on this type of project without any prior experience doing so more than likely earned James Paniagua a considerable amount of Brownie points with the Ibarra family. What’s more, he was apparently able to pull it off, providing them with a much-needed sense of financial relief, especially considering the thousands of dollars that they were facing due to the dog’s condition.
“Benny started acting very weird and skittish. The following morning he woke up dragging his hind legs. This scared everyone and my girlfriend’s mom ended up taking him to the animal hospital. They informed her that the surgery would cost beyond $8,000.”
According to the report, James Paniagua did a little research and discovered that a brand new dog wheelchair would cost a minimum of $1,000 in addition to any other related medical expenses to help Benny. Therefore, he decided to take the necessary steps to learn how to build one by himself.
Where did James get his training when it came to creating a dog wheelchair for the first time? Google searches!
“I started off by Google searching ‘dog do-it-yourself wheelchair.’ I said, ‘you know, that looks simple enough and you only need a couple pieces to it so why not? Let’s try it out.'”
Spending no more than $40, James Paniagua was able to get all of the materials and supplies, including PVC pipes, that he needed to build the dog wheelchair for his girlfriend’s 3-year-old Pomeranian.
“I had…trouble finding wheels and ended up just buying a $20 scooter from Wal-Mart and salvaging the wheels. $5 on Velcro straps, less than $5 on nuts and bolts and close to $8 on PVC pipes, joints and PVC cement.”
As seen in the video footage, Benny is able to use the dog wheelchair to move himself around with very little difficulty, a clear indication that James’ first major attempt at creating a dog wheelchair out of PVC piping was a huge success.
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) February 18, 2016
According to CBS Los Angeles, Benny is currently able to use the wheelchair to move forward and only needs assistance when he gets stuck.
“[Benny] looks a little more mobile and has a different attitude when in there as opposed to when he’s just dragging along. These dogs, they’re animals, but at the same time, they’re a part of the family.”
According to the Best Friends Animal Society, a dog wheelchair for disabled dogs is an essential tool, especially when it comes to the dog’s physical condition and overall fitness.
In addition to staying in shape, allowing disabled dogs to travel in wheelchairs will also help them to keep their weight down, a required necessity since their “working limbs must remain strong and healthy.” A dog wheelchair can also reportedly help to control such annoying behaviors as excessive whining and barking since the dog is no longer bored and able to move about and exercise freely with that vehicular tool literally by their side.
[Image via Dollar Photo Club]