70-Pound Disabled Tortoise on the Move Again Thanks to His Large Custom Wheelchair
Rescue tortoise George Bailey started moving comfortably with his new wheelchair from Walkin' Pets right after trying the mobility tool on.
George Bailey the Sulcata tortoise has something to "shell-ebrate."
The 11-year-old tortoise recently received a wheelchair from Walkin' Pets, a pet mobility company based out of New Hampshire, and is walking on all four legs for the first time in his life.
Before getting his new wheels, Georgie Bailey was rescued by Jaime Loebener from an exotic animal facility in Knoxville, Tennessee. Born with a metabolic bone disease that prevented his back legs from fully developing, the tortoise had spent his life dragging himself around.
"He uses his front legs to pull his way around slowly and clumsily. The bigger he's gotten, the more difficult this has been for him. He currently weighs close to 70 lbs. but may grow to weigh over 200 lbs," Loebener told Walkin' Pets, according to a release from the company.
Aware that Sulcata tortoises can live up to 100 years and that George Bailey will only get bigger over time, Loebener looked into how she could get her pet tortoise more mobile. After seeing how Walkin' Pets helped a smaller tortoise, Loebener reached out to the company about her larger task.
Walkin' Pets was happy to take on the challenge and eventually created an adjustable wheelchair large enough and sturdy enough to get George Bailey walking comfortably.
The tortoise took to the new tool right away and experienced his first steps in his new wheelchair moments after trying it for the first time. Now, George Bailey has more control over his movements and isn't stuck dragging his back body across the ground.
Loebener told Walkin' Pets she thinks George Bailey's progress is "amazing" and that it is a delight to see the animal "move himself around."
This story originally appeared on people.com