Not long ago, a Chihuahua on Indianapolis, born without his front legs, was taken in by a local Veterinary technician, Ashely Looper, who outfitted the tiny puppy with a makeshift cart. After a news team paid the vets a visit, Turbo’s story made international news with donations flooding the hospital, reaching well into the thousands of dollars. And, upon seeing the cart, a San Diego mechanical engineer began designing the dog a cart that was tailored just for him.
Mark Deadrick, president of high performance fab shop 3dyn, crafted the cart in CAD, telling NBC WPTV News, “We have capabilities to make just about anything, but we lean toward things that we find interesting. Usually that’s something that either flies, has wheels and goes fast. TurboRoo meets that requirement (sans the fast part I suppose) and I thought I’d spend a small amount of time coming up with an interim solution.”
Unable to enlist an autoparts manufacturer in the area to scan the puppy, Deadrick eyeballed a photo of TurboRoo to create something that would fit, he explains “I just did some thumbnail measurements from photos and spent about 20 minutes designing a cart, hit print on one of our 3D printers and let it run for 4 hours. I figured some inline wheels would have the least amount of resistance and would be easily obtained, so a trip to the sporting goods store was probably the most time consuming part.”
The 3D printed cart will serve TurboRoo – named for the snail from the recent DreamWorks flick and the fact that he looks like a kangaroo – until he grows older, at which point, Looper will be able to outfit the Chihuahua with something bigger, purchased with the $3,500 funds sent into her office at The Downtown Veterinarian. If you’d like to follow the cute little fella, he’s all over social media. Check him out on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. For the recent WPTV coverage of Turbo, watch the segment below: