Specialist high chair gives starving labrador hope
A dog who cannot eat due to a rare disorder has been given hope by a specialist chair built by volunteers.
Buck, a 17-month-old labrador, is half the average size and weight for his age due to megaoesophagus, which means he struggles to swallow food.
A specialist support, known as a Bailey chair, was not available until next year - too late for poor Buck.
But after a Nottinghamshire charity appealed for help, a vet and a designer built a bespoke chair within days.
Buck weighed only 17kg (37.4lbs) when he was taken in by Mansfield-based charity, Team Edward - Labrador Rescue.
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Founder Wendy Hopewell said: "We were really shocked. The previous owner said they were really struggling to feed him but when I saw him I thought 'wow, I've never seen a labrador that thin before'.
"We often get them overweight but I found his condition really heart-breaking."
Bailey chairs work by holding a dog upright, allowing gravity to help food move into the stomach.
When Ms Hopewell discovered none were available for more than a month, she took to social media for help.
Emma Drinkall, from Nottingham's Vet School, and partner Nick Rowan, a senior lecturer at De Montfort University in product design and engineering, stepped forward.
Mr Rowan said: "I've experience in disability design but have never worked with animals.
"When we were cutting the wood I had to double check the measurements we were given because I couldn't believe he could be that thin.
"I'm thrilled we could help and thrilled it fits so well and he seems so chilled in it."