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Veterinarian creates artificial prosthetic limbs for landmine-injured elephants

Elephant in Thailand

Wild elephant in Thailand. Photo: R. M. Calamar.

Dr. Chloe Buiting, who is known on social media as Jungle Doctor, has nearly 166,000 followers on her Instagram profile, which has made her work as a veterinarian increasingly recognised. Many have applauded the help she has been providing to elephants in Thailand since 2018, for which she has even created a specialised prosthetic limbs.

These prostheses are necessary because many of these animals are often injured by landmines on the Thai-Myanmar border.

Her story begins three years ago, when the doctor decided to follow the Friends of the Asian Elephant (FAE) veterinary team in Chiang Mai, Thailand, a group that has been providing free care to elephants since 1993.

During this time, together with this group of veterinarians, they created, among others, the above-mentioned prosthesis for elephants.

“With the help of prostheses, elephants can learn to walk again and live a full life that would otherwise have been impossible. My time with them is an experience I will never forget,” she said.

She also provided more information on the use and treatment provided by these prostheses, as the elephants do not have to wear them 24 hours a day, as they are usually removed at night.

On the process she also explained that “to fit them, the leg is first coated with talcum powder before a protective sock is applied. The padded prosthesis is then fitted, adjusted and tightened with a ratchet system.”

-Thailand News