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Dog Gets First Chance To Walk On All Fours

BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) - A former shelter dog that's missing a foot is now learning to walk on all fours again.

"Brownie" tried on his new custom-made prosthetic paw on Tuesday. He lives with a family of four in Westminster and now he's on new footing that may take some getting used to.

Everybody dotes on the friendly 3-year-old dog. They're excited about his future because he's had a difficult past. Brownie came to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley in April from an overcrowded shelter in Kansas. He's active and playful even though he's missing his left back foot.

"The sending shelter didn't know if he maybe lost it due to frostbite or maybe he was born that way; just not sure what happened to him," Kim Sporrer with the Humane Society said.

Now, for the first time, the German shorthair pointer got the chance to feel what it's like to walk on all fours. Brownie was fitted for an artificial paw on May 10 -- just two days after he was adopted by Giovanni Stabile and his family. Two weeks later, back at the prosthetic clinic Orthopets, Brownie stood level for the first time.

Brownie will need time and practice to adjust. It's a typical start toward a better future.

"It will help him better with keeping his hips in line," Stabile said.

"He's going to be able to run more normally and have a much better quality of life with less chronic pain in the long run," Dr. Patsy Mich with OrthoPets said.

Orthopets may put a tread taken from bicycle tires on the bottom of the artificial paw. That will help with plans to take Brownie hiking and even mountain climbing.

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