No, Boogie is not dressing up as a Mummy for Halloween this year. This is a photo of him getting his body “cast” for Bionic Pets and Dive Design so they can build him a custom wheelchair! This is no ordinary wheelchair either, it is built using state of the art 3D printing technology and will be truly “custom” made for our little guy.
Over the last 6 months or more Boogie has been having trouble walking, running, and standing. If you have been following us for a while, you’ll remember that in the first couple of years, Boogie had two FHO surgeries on his hips. While he bounced back quickly from the first one, the second one set him back a bit. Despite our rehab efforts (including the purchase of a wheelchair), he couldn’t regain the strength he once had.
As he’s gotten older, his hind legs and hips are getting weaker. This is a natural part of aging for animals, but with Boogie it adds another layer of challenge to his existing neurological disability and luxating patellas. It’s clearly not comfortable for him to walk on his own, and it poses a risk to further injury – his knees, back, and head being more vulnerable as a result.
But doesn’t Boogie already have a wheelchair?
Yes, we have three actually! But none of them work for Boogie and can cause him harm if he continues use. Prior to finding Bionic Pets and Dive Design, we tried two “custom” wheelchair companies who assured us they could build a featherweight wheelchair for a 2-pound dog. Unfortunately, both chairs arrived made of heavy metal parts, and weighed 4+ pounds. Boogie could barely move in them, and when he did it looked painful, unfortunately the companies didn’t offer any solution for us. But there was a silver lining in those purchases. When Buster came along and needed a chair, we were able to utilize those “custom” chairs until he grew out of them and we had to upgrade him to his “truck” he uses now.
Finding Bionic Pets & Dive Design
A few months ago we began researching (again) to find Boogie a mobility device and we found Bionic Pets on Instagram. After pouring over their Instagram feed, I made a call to get information in the hopes that they could help Boogie. It was during this phone call that I learned about their design and building process and was able to ask if they could do the impossible: build a chair that weighed less than Boogie. Ideally, a chair that weighed one pound or less. I knew this was a BIG order for a TINY dog.
Needless to say, they found a solution, and we committed to the investment for Boogie. They sent us the casting kit and we were able to “cast” Boogie’s body at home and send it back to them. From there, they use their cutting-edge technology to design and build a mobility device that is truly built for Boogie’s body and unique movement challenges. We are very excited for Boogie to be back up and “boogie-ing” around. It takes 4-6 weeks to build, so we must wait a bit, but it will be worth it to give Boogie the freedom of mobility again. Stay tuned for updates.