You wouldn’t know Teddy was different if you couldn’t hear the telltale clicking.
The Boston Terrier puppy is a rescue dog who came to the Boston Terrier Rescue of NC, a nonprofit in Durham, as a 10-week-old puppy missing his front paws and parts of his back paws.
But thanks to the rescue and N.C. College of Veterinary Medicine & Veterinary Hospital, he has a new family and a new start.
Teddy came to the rescue about a year ago, and no one quite knew how he ended up missing his paws. But they knew he needed help.
Teddy was seen by veterinarians soon after coming to the rescue but not much could be done for him until he finished growing up. So when he turned 1, he went back and was cast for prosthetics.
Teddy was even used as a model during a class for veterinarians at the college so they could learn from his case to help other dogs.
Now Teddy clicks when he walks on the sidewalk. The black prosthetics blend in with his coat so it’s hard to tell he’s any different from other dogs. It remains to be seen if he’ll need prosthetics for his back paws.
But his new family will be with him every step of the way.
Barbara Bradley and her husband, who live in Wake Forest, are fosters for the Durham rescue, taking in dogs that need a temporary home until they can be adopted. She was contacted to be Teddy’s temporary foster, but the first time she saw him she knew “he wouldn’t be going to any other foster home!”
“He was just the cutest little thing and so pitiful with just stubs for front legs and not much more on the back,” Bradley said.
Bradley took Teddy to the the college for his first evaluation and has been with him every step of the way. Now that he’s been fitted for prosthetics on his front paws, Bradley said they’re going to wait and see if he needs them on his back paws, too.
Teddy’s back paws still have the large pads but he’s missing his back toes. His front paws are completely missing. Now that he’s grown up, his adult weight causes more pressure on his stubs so Bradley said they’re going to keep an eye on him and make sure they do what’s best.
“We’re hoping he will do fine without prosthetics for (his back feet),” she said.
Teddy’s prosthetics were made by Bio-Tech Prosthetics & Orthotics which usually works on humans, but helps animals, too.
Bradley said she and her husband decided to give Teddy a permanent home because they wanted to make sure he got all the care he needed.
“By that time we had absolutely fallen in love with him,” she said. “He’s a typical dog and gets around on his stubs pretty well, but of course can’t go for walks like a regular dog on a sidewalk.”
Teddy even goes to day camp once a week and plays just like all the other dogs, Bradley said.
“I don’t think he knows there’s anything different about him, but now that he has his new feet, he can go for walks and has such a good time.”
Abbie Bennett: 919-836-5768; @AbbieRBennett