Tortured, shot at, or left to die, these brave pups each got a new lease on life with the help of artificial limbs

When Naki'o was a puppy, he was found, along with his litter mates and dead mother, abandoned in a foreclosed home in Nebraska. Naki'o was literally frozen into a puddle on the floor, and had to have all four of his paws and part of his tail amputated as a result. A Colorado Springs veterinary assistant named Christine Pace got wind of the dog's woeful story and was so taken that she adopted the severely handicapped puppy. At first, Naki'o was able get around on his stumps, but as he grew, his weight limited his activity. Pace raised enough money to get him outfitted with prosthetic limbs for his back legs, which suffered the worse damage. Seeing that the playful pup managed so well on his bionic paws, Martin and Amy Kaufman of Orthopets created a pair of front-leg prosthesis as well. (You can watch a short documentary on his inspirational little life — but beware: You will cry.) (REUTERS/Rick Wilking)

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Tags: animal cruelty, artificial limbs, dogs, pets, prosthetics

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