Cecily is a hen who was born with a bum leg due to a damaged tendon. The options were to put her down or make her a new leg. Her owner, Andrea Martin, who rescues chickens in Clinton, MA, opted to pay $2,500 to have the hen's leg replaced with a new 3D-printed version.
On Wednesday, Cecily will be a patient at Tufts University's Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, where she will be fitted for her prosthetic leg.
The pioneering surgery on the bird will begin Wednesday at Tufts when Dr. Emi Knafo, a specialist in avian orthopedics, surgery and wound healing, will amputate Cecily's right leg at the hock – the upper part.
That will follow a CT scan to get a mirror image of the leg to use in creating the plastic prosthetic.
Then, after a 10- to 14-day recovery period, the prosthetic, which will be made at Tufts' Medford campus, will be fitted onto the remaining section of the leg.
The operation has been performed successfully in the past on a rooster and a duck.