From lifelike figurines of your cat or dog to prosthetic limbs for animals in need, 3D printing is creating brighter futures for animals and owners

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Here’s a look at some ways 3D printing is being used when it comes to our furry friends:

  1. Lifelike recreations: Some companies are now offering 3D printing of models of pets.

GravityB, a Calgary-based studio, for example, creates figurines from images captured in a scanning booth called “The Coppy Machine.” The machine was actually inspired in part by a dog named Coppy (Copernicus), who was the model for the company’s first successful 3D print. Copernicus has, sadly, since passed away, but, as part of Coppy’s posthumous legacy, figurines are called “Coppies.”

Coppy (Copernicus). Used with permission from website.

Dogs and cat Coppies start at around $150. Coppies of people (including families) can be created too, as can figurines of a person with their pet.

3D view of dog Coppy or figurine from GravityB. Photo used with permission from website.
Sample of dog with lifelike 3d figurine. Photo used with permission from website.
A pup admires his likeness, which is a miniature replica right down to his green collar. Photo used with permission from website.

2) Prosthetics:

One big benefit of 3D prosthethics is the cost. As explained in the following video, a regular prosthetic leg would cost $1500, but the one used for a rescued puppy was only $50.

The video, from the dodo, also shows other examples of dogs receiving prosthethics, noting that another benefit of prosthethics is comfort. Sometimes a cart with doggie wheelchair might be too hard on an animal’s spine, but the prosthethics are more natural and customizable to the size and shape of the animal.

Dogs are not the only animals that benefit from 3D printed prosthethics. In 2015, Sprocket, a kitty living in Scotland, who had a bout of bad luck, being hit by both a car and soon after attacked by a dog, received a 3D printed orthotic to help with mobility and hopefully prevent amputation of a damaged leg.

And, turtles have received new shells via the printing process. One example can be seen in this video from Denver 7.

3) Pet products: According to 3DPRINT.COM, pet products, including toys, hamster wheels, dog bones, scoopers, brushes and bird perches, are all capable of being produced using a 3D printer.

“Even apparel such as dog shoes and ‘cat armor’ can be perfectly tailored to your pet’s size and shape in order to protect them from thorns, weather and other animals.”

As an added benefit for humans, 3DPRINT.COM notes that, “When innovators use 3D printers to manufacture items for pets such as these they may eligible for Research and Development (R&D).”

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