May 9 (UPI) --
A baby giraffe born at a Seattle zoo has been outfitted with a custom-made pair of therapeutic shoes to treat a leg abnormality that prevented it from walking.
The Woodland Park Zoo said the giraffe, a yet-unnamed male born at the facility May 2, was born with a condition known as hyper-extended fetlocks that made it difficult for him to walk.
"It is well documented in horses and has been reported to occur in giraffes," zoo veterinarian Tim Storms said.
A team of specialists worked together at the zoo to design and create a set of shoes from high density polyethylene and plywood.
"At this stage, the new therapeutic shoes are on a trial basis but I'm hopeful that they will help him walk better. We'll continue refining and improving our approach to find a good balance between supporting his limbs and strengthening his tendons," Storms said.