3D printed prothetics

3D Printing Helps our Pets and Friends

3d printed prosthetics

For Cleopatra, a leopard tortoise, getting new digs is a no-brainer. Susceptible to infection because of “peaking” or “pyramiding” of her shell, Canyon Critters Reptile Rescue knew they needed to act fast to keep her alive. Thanks to Colorado Technical University student and US Air Force veteran Roger Henry, Cleopatra got a new lease on life with a prosthetic shell that took hundreds of hours to design.

Fed a diet high in protein, tortoises often develop the condition known as “peaking” or “pyramiding.” It’s because reptile owners seldom know how much to feed their new pets. Tortoises are herbivores. They require a specific way of handling and feeding.

Shells serve an important role in a tortoise’s life. They’re connected to the animal’s skeleton and suffer injuries like any other body part. Cartoons have us believing something different, but that isn’t the case. Shells serve as armor protecting the internal organs. If they get damaged, the skeleton gets damaged, too.


3D printing also benefitted the following animals:

1. Buttercup the Duck

Born without a foot, she got a prosthetic one when a company 3D printed a mold out of silicone. Thanks to the mold, Trooper, another duck, got a new leg.

2. Turboroo the Chihuahua

Without front legs, it’s impossible to run or play the way most dogs do. Turboroo captured the heart of a veterinarian who started a crowdfunding campaign to get the little guy a cart. Through donations, Turboroo got custom rollerblade-style wheels to help him get around. Turboroo even has his own YouTube Channel.

3D printing solves a number of problems for humans and the animal kingdom. 3D printed prosthetic limbs give men, women, and children the opportunity to live life happy and carefree. It looks like Cleopatra is also going to benefit from her new “home.” She won’t need to worry about infection any longer.