UNITED KINGDOM – A total of two cats have been given a brand new lease of life in what is thought to be a surgery first for Europe aside from Britain.
Black-and-white Pooh was given two new paws after he lost his legs following an accident at just one year old.
He is now able to walk and play normally, all thanks to a veterinary surgeon giving him two artificial legs.
The leg implants are both custom-made and “peg” the ankle to the foot just like the way deer antler bone grows through skin.
Pooh and the other amputee cat, whose name is Steven, are both in search of new homes.
They can balance as usual on all four paws and are both in great health after their recovery from their respective accidents.
Back in 2010, a similar $62,000 surgery was performed on Oscar the cat over in England.
His owners were referred by a vet on to Dr. Noel Fitzpatrick, who is a Surrey-based neuro-orthopaedic surgeon.
The procedure to give him new legs took a whopping three hours. During it, the surgical team needed to drill the pegs into one of Oscar’s ankle bones on each leg.
They then coated the prosthetics with hydroxyapatite which encourages bone cells to grow onto the metal.
The skin then grows over an “umbrella” at the very end to prevent potentially fatal infection, and the peg protrudes through the bone and skin, which then allows the custom-built paws to be attached.
It seems as though this surgery is now being mimicked in other countries around the world — perhaps in the future – it may even become more affordable and readily available, so cats who get hit by cars no longer have to limp or drag a set of wheels behind them.