'Wonky' donkey gets new foot for Christmas
An abandoned donkey missing one of his feet is walking again thanks to a human prosthetic leg donated from the UK.
Hector the donkey was dumped outside an animal welfare centre in Luxor, Egypt, and had not walked for four months.
His new foot was made using spare parts of a prosthetic leg donated to Legs4Africa, a Leicestershire-based charity.
It usually donates prosthetics to human amputees in Africa, but Hector is the first animal to be helped.
Tom Williams, the charity's founder, said it was "fantastic to see Hector walking for Christmas".
A donkey in Hector's condition would usually be left to die, or killed humanely.
However, Hector appeared to be happy despite being lame, so Animal Welfare of Luxor (AWOL) decided to help him.
Georgie Hollis, a wound specialist with a background in biomechanics, built the new foot after AWOL contacted equine medicine expert Prof Derek Knottenbelt OBE.
"He's a friend of mine and he's a bit of a legend really, or a leg-end," said Miss Hollis.
"He sent me an email saying 'Georgie, we must be able to do something for this donkey'."
Miss Hollis suspects Hector lost his foot after being tethered by his leg, cutting off the circulation.
"We are trying to save him from being a wonky donkey, which would be the end of it for him really," said Miss Hollis.
"Hector is just one of a lot of donkeys that need lots of help. There are more donkeys used around the world for transport than there are cars."
AWOL fitted the new foot, but Miss Hollis will visit Hector herself in a month or so to fit him with a permanent foot.
"I will cast his leg and make him one that's more permanent, breathable, lightweight and sporty," she said.
- The charity collects old prosthetic limbs from hospitals and individuals from around the UK
- They would otherwise be thrown away, as they cannot be reused due to medical waste laws under EU regulations
- The legs are reconditioned and modified in Africa before being paired with their new owners
- Throughout the year, the charity has collected 1,000 limbs that will be shipped to the Banjul Hospital in The Gambia if £2,000 can be raised