Family seeks solutions for golden retriever with upward-extending front legs

By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |   July 15, 2016 at 1:01 PM
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VICTORVILLE, Calif., July 15 (UPI) -- A California family said they are refusing to give up on their 1-year-old golden retriever, despite a condition that makes her front legs extend upward.

Rachel Woertink and James Cassity of Victorville said the dog, Rexi, started showing signs of difficulty walking when she was about 10 weeks old.

"She was limping, so I took her to the vet thinking that she sprained her leg or something and got X-rays, completely normal," Woertink told KABC-TV.

Rexi soon completely lost the use of her front legs and was diagnosed with a neurological condition. The condition caused her front legs to extend upward rather than toward the ground.

"Even one of the vets said, 'Maybe you should think about putting her down.' She is like family to us you know. We don't have any kids so this is kind of like our kid right here and we treat her like that," Cassity said.

The couple said Rexi currently gets around by pushing herself with her back legs and sliding on her chest. They said they have a protective vest for the canine's chest and they attempted to teach her to use a special wheelchair, but that solution turned out to create more problems than it solved.

"When she hits a rock the thing flips over upside down, she has flipped once or twice and we don't want to injure her anymore," Cassity said.

Woertink and Cassity started a GoFundMe page to help them find a solution to Rexi's problem.

The couple said they are open to any type of permanent solution for their beloved pet.

"Any kind of invention, somebody who knows something about dogs missing their front legs or handicapped, maybe some kind of doctor who knows about a surgery," Cassity said.

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