Medical technology has helped give millions of people a new lease on life after tragic accidents or events leave them maimed and injured. This technology has lasting effects on the animal kingdom as well. Humans undeniably leave a negative impact in a lot of environments, so it's nice to see us doing some good for those that can't help themselves.
Which leads me to Vitoria, a goose who surely would have died without the courageous help a team in Brazil.
She was found near the side of a road with her beak severely broken. Vets couldn't say for sure what happened to her prior to her arrival, but speculate that she was mauled by wild dogs. She was brought to sanctuary, dangerously underweight as her mangled beak left her unable to eat. They contacted Cicero Moraes, a 3D graphic designer, to try something unprecedented.
He used his skills to design a brand new prosthetic beak for Vitoria. Prosthetic are frequently used after amputations for humans, and less commonly for animals, but a prosthetic beak for a goose had never been tried before.
It took 15 days of measuring, designing and creating to finally get the top and bottom beak fitting properly. In the meantime Vitoria was fitted with a temporary beak which enabled her to eat again.
Even with advancements in technology, it's not easy to fit a goose with a fake beak. It took 3 long surgeries to attach the prosthesis, and Vitoria almost died when she caught pneumonia after one such surgery.
Months after rescue Vitoria is eating, drinking and honking like normal, living her life in the Brazillian countryside, where she's being monitored and tended by a research worker.
The success of the beak opens the doors for more treatment of abused animals and may even help further human research.
See Vitoria in action for yourself and get more on the story: