Last updated on Jan 22nd, 2015 at 06:30 am
Derby was born with underdeveloped front legs, and was left in a shelter in Hillsborough, New Hampshire. When Sherry Portanova adopted him, she vowed to help find a way for Derby to run. Although they managed to build a wheeled harness for him, his movement was very limited and he wasn’t able to play with other dogs, or run with his owners.
His movement was very limited and he wasn’t able to play with other dogs, or run with his owners.
Sherry contacted Tara Anderson, a director at 3D Systems which specialises in 3-D printing, and the team put their creative skills to the test designing some prosthetic limbs for him.
Incredibly emotional to see him run
According to his owner, “”It was incredible and emotional the first time we saw him run on his new legs. Incredible because it was his very first time on them and emotional because he was so excited to be running.”
Derby now takes daily runs with his family, who are continually working on improving the prosthetics design.
Sherry said that they originally designed the legs so that they were low to the ground. “We started this way to give him a chance to get used to his new legs. But with 3D printing it’s easy to iterate design, so he is being fitted with progressively longer legs until he reaches his optimal height. Work is ongoing and we are about to 3D print the 4th version of his prosthetics.”