Six-legged dog Ariel has operation in UK to remove extra limbs, Latest World News - The New Paper

Six-legged dog Ariel has operation in UK to remove extra limbs

The six-legged puppy that made headlines after she was found dumped in a supermarket carpark in Pembrokeshire, Wales, has had surgery to remove her extra limbs.

Well-wishers around the world raised about £15,000 (S$25,550) for Ariel – a spaniel – to have the surgery, reported the BBC.

Though there were fears that one of her four working limbs might have to be amputated, surgeon Aaron Lutchman managed to save them all.

Speaking to the BBC, Mr Lutchman said: “She’s doing really well, she’s bounced back, and she’s a happy little dog, and we’re hoping she’s going to go on to lead a fabulous little life.

“She’s got her own little character and even though she’s had a tough start in life she really has done well to come through this as she has… if we can do what we can to help then that’s just absolutely brilliant.”

Mr Mikey Lawlor, founder and manager of the animal rescue that took her in, said that the vet who assessed Ariel when she was first discovered also found she had an extra vulva.

The 42-year-old head of Greenacres Rescue added that a CT scan revealed she had only one kidney, which complicated the medical treatment required.

He told BBC: “And, due to having two hip joints on one side, Ariel’s pelvis never formed properly.

“As a result her normal back right leg had virtually no muscle tone, so there was a possibility that might have had to come off too.

“Thankfully that wasn’t the case, as it has shown signs of having strengthened a lot in recent months.”

Ariel takes her name from Disney’s Little Mermaid, as her partially fused extra hind legs resembled a mermaid’s tail.

She was operated on at Langford Vets Small Animal Referral Hospital in Somerset on Jan 18.

“There were two procedures which lasted about two hours, but both went fine,” said Mr Lawlor.

“The next day she was up, walking around and eating and drinking.

“Now we just need to keep our fingers crossed she doesn’t get any infections, but she really is in the best hands.”

Langford Vets’ hospital director Vicki Black added: “Ariel was a complicated little dog whose care required close collaboration across a number of our specialist teams, including orthopaedics, soft tissue surgery, anaesthesia and radiology.

“As part of the University of Bristol we are a centre committed to career-long learning and are proud to innovate and treat pets like Ariel.

“We are delighted such a lovely animal has recovered well from her surgery.”

Like the Disney tale, Ariel is set for a fairytale ending. She has been returned to her foster family in west Wales after recovery in hospital.

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