One dog owner’s determination gave a new lease on life for his double-amputee pooch thanks to a special doggy wheelchair that allows his pet to move around.
The inspiring story of Pigpen the golden retriever will bring a tear to your eyes as you can see in the video below how much his life has changed, thanks to the wheelchair:
Video credit: Rumble
At only eight months old, Pigpen had both his front legs amputated because of their deformity. He had to push his body along the ground to move and he was nicknamed “Street Sweeper.”
Now, the 14-month-old Pigpen has special wheels that take the place of his front legs so now he can move around unimpeded and play with other dogs.
Chad DuBose, 34, Pigpen’s owner, estimates that he has spent $20,000 on the dog’s treatments.
He said: “It was worth it though – he’s so happy. If I could bottle that kind of happiness and sell it then I’d be a billionaire.”
One of 11 puppies born on November 14, 2018, in Savannah, Georgia, Pigpen showed signs that something was wrong with him four days later.
“We initially thought he was just going to be the runt of the litter, but as he continued to grow there was a noticeable developmental difference between him and his siblings,” DuBose said.
“He couldn’t use his front legs, he just used to slide along the ground like a street sweeper.
“He’d get super dirty all the time but he didn’t care, he was having a great time.
“My fiancée named him Pigpen after the keyboardist from the Grateful Dead [American rock band].
“But the name gathered new meaning because he was so dirty all the time.
“He’s a very messy eater too.”
Upon the advice of a veterinarian, both of Pigpen’s front legs were amputated in two separate operations.
DuBose, a charter captain, recalled, “A lot of thoughts crossed my mind.
“We were worried about what his quality of life would be like after the amputations.
“But after talking to the vet, we decided that if Pigpen could fight the fight then we could too.
“As long as he is comfortable and not in pain we said we would do everything we can to keep him alive.”
Both Pigpen’s front legs were removed in July 2019 and started physical therapy in December 2019 at the Fetch Canine Rehab facility in Savannah.
“He recovered more quickly than anyone expected him to,” said DuBose.
“He seemed a lot happier. His front legs were weighing him down and becoming very deformed.”
Pigpen also got his first professionally-made wheelchair which gave him unprecedented mobility and independence.
“We experimented with several prototypes while he was a puppy but we had to wait until he was fully developed to get the final model,” said DuBose.
Pigpen is now able to fully play with his friend Hank, a white golden retriever in the neighborhood.
“They have a great time rolling around together.”
In all, DuBose pegs the total cost of Pigpen’s treatments at over $20,000.
“We held a fundraiser and the vet was so kind, he gave us the operations for half price,” he said.
“But we’ve paid about $10,000 out of our own pocket, so you’re looking at a $10,000 dog right there.
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