Buttercup was born with her left foot backwards, and when she was given to the Feathered Angels Waterfowl Sanctuary they decided to amputate it.
Mike Garey, owner of the sanctuary based in Arlington Tennessee, United States, designed a foot based on her sister Minnie’s using 3D software.
Novacopy, a local 3D printing company, printed a plastic model based on the design which they donated.
Garey then made prosthetic moulds based on the 3D printed replica.
There have been some discrepancies over some media coverage on Buttercup’s foot as they have reported the new foot to be a 3D printed prosthetic. But this is impossible because Tim Caffrey, a veteran in 3D printing, told CNN reporters that 3D printing materials are limited.
“To attain the combination of flexibility and strength required for a foot, Garey most likely poured a vulcanizing rubber material into the silicon mould,” he said.
Garey, who started a Facebook page on the process, made it very clear on the official Facebook page that 3D printing technology was only used to create a silicone replica and not the actual prosthetic itself.
Buttercup Gets a New High Tech Foot is the official Facebook page which tracked the whole process since before the amputation.