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AK: Dog caught in trap gets prosthetic limbs

November 11, 2009

Up and running, the 'bionic' hound who chewed his limbs off to get out of a hunting trap

Tearing across the park, Andre the mongrel looks just like any other dog.

But a closer look at the Alsation-Rottweiler mix reveals that his ability to walk - let alone run - is something of a miracle.

That's because Andre only has two legs - after he was forced to chew off his limbs when he became ensnared in an illegal hunting trap.

I've got the ball! Andre charges over a park with two natural legs and two prosthetic limbs

Weighing just under three stone, Andrew was found close to death on an Alaskan roadside last year.

Bleeding severely from wounds when he was rescued by the Alaska Dog and Puppy Rescue group (ADPR), he was nursed back to health and now enjoys a full life thanks to ingenious prosthetic limbs.

Amy Kauffmann, who runs the Orthopets animal prosthetic limb company in Colorado, said the charity approached her to fit him with two false limbs just below the elbow of his front and rear left legs.

'I had been in contact with the ADPR group since Andre's accident in early 2008," said Ms Kauffmann, 31, who runs OrthoPets animal prosthetic limb company in Denver, Colorado.

'They sounded me out about fitting Andre with a pair of prosthetic limbs and we were only too happy to help. They are specially designed with a silicon cushion to enable Andre a larger amount of comfort.'

'We were happy to work with ADPR and the American Human Association to foot the 2,800 medical bill for him.

'He is a beautiful dog, reacts well to children and so far everything is going according to plan."

Now living with a friend of a former colleague of Amy's, Andre has become an unlikely symbol for anti-trapping campaigners in the US.

'Andre was caught in a totally gruesome wolverine trap in Alaska,' explains Amy.

"Animal rights campaigners are always keen to use Andre as an example of what these kind of traps can do.

"The fact that he chewed off his own legs just to get free says a lot about the character of the dog.

"It is great to see him so fresh and happy." Happy on his new legs, Andre
returns to see Amy and her husband Martin at OrthoPets once every few weeks for a check up.

Andre has become an unlikely symbol for anti-trapping campaigners in the US.
after he was caught in a trap aimed at catching wolverines (pictured)

Martin Kaufmann with Andre. He founded Orthopets, in Denver, Colorado, with his wife Amy

"We treat two to six animals a month here in Denver from all over the globe," said Amy.
"Me and my husband set up OrthoPets in 2003 so we could professionally work with and indulge our love of animals.

"Pets should get the same kind of care as a normal person, there is no reason why they shouldn't have another chance.'.

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