A tiger is being given a prosthetic paw in the first operation of its kind.
Professor Peter Giannoudis – from the University of Leeds – has helped Indian experts with a preliminary operation on a seven-year-old big cat called Sahebrao maimed by a poacher’s trap.
Now, in a world-first, the tiger will be fitted with an artificial paw in around a month after being rescued from a trap in Gondmohadi village in Chandrapur District back in 2012.
The wound later developed gangrene, which meant part of his injured front left was amputated.
Since that time, he has been in captivity at Nagpur’s Gorewada Zoo’s Wildlife Rescue Centre.
Surgeon Sushrut Babhulkar – who adopted the animal three years ago – told the Indian Express newspaper: “I wish to see him walk normally, like a human being getting a prosthetic leg, for the rest of his life.”
according to the Telegraph, tiger numbers in India are rebounding after years of decline, the Indian government said earlier this year, rising 30 percent since 2014. Traps still pose a threat however and many of those caught face a slow, painful death from infection.