Where do you even get a dog prosthetic? Lucky for us we had two wonderful coincidences happen around the same time when we were starting to think of options for Phillip. My mother-in-law, Christie, picked up a flyer about dog prosthetics when she was at an event during the summer and my coworker Sarah saw the same dog prosthetic place online and told me to check them out. The fact that we had two people telling us to check out this place was a good sign in our book. The name of this wonderful place is called Orthopets.
Orthopets is right here in Denver so that was one huge plus and really convenient. I checked out their website and looked around online to see how other people were talking about them, and finally, when Phillip was one month away from turning one I decided to reach out to them and do an initial consultation. This first appointment was great. I met with Dr. Patrice Mich. She immediately picked up on Phillip’s personality and was sweet talking him through the entire appointment. It really made the experience enjoyable for Phillip and a lot less scary for him as she moved him around and measured his legs. He even had some x-rays taken of his lower half to see how his bones and muscles were developing.
They found three big things from those x-rays. One, Phillip is a pretty unique case having a partial leg in the back and the options they had for him were very slim. They said if we had brought Phillip in even two years ago they’d have to turn us away at providing any viable option for him, because the one device they had in mind for him was so new to their facility. Two, after looking over the x-ray it was pretty apparent that although Phillip was managing to get around alright on his own now, the way his bones and muscles were developing would cause major issues later on his life. His knee cap on his good leg in the back had started to form out at an angle in order to compensate for his back half. And the final thing they discovered was that his partial leg was severely underdeveloped in both the bone mass and muscle mass. This meant that whatever work we had ahead of us would be a lot of hard work on Phillip’s part because he’d have to build up a lot of strength in that partial leg in order to really get the most out of a prosthetic device. Phillip would have to learn how to walk again using 4 legs instead of 3 and really teach his brain to rely on using his left side.