At just seven years old, tiny tortoise Vince lost his front leg in a vicious dog attack.
He’d escaped from home and was found injured by neighbours.
When he was taken to the vets, his owner, Kara Paynton, was told that the tortoise might die.
‘When I went, the vet told me he was in a bad way and that his bone was exposed and maggots had infected the wound.
‘I was told he would probably die, so I prepared myself for the worst.
‘They operated on him and cut the bone off, cleaned the infection and stitched him up.’
He was saved thanks to a full amputation of his front leg, but the procedure left him barely able to walk.
The solution? A special Lego wheel to help Vince get around again.
One of the veterinary nurses put Kara in touch with an engineer called Nathan Portlock-Allan, who also owned a tortoise.
He constructed a prototype foot out of a toy Lego wheel, which he attached to Vince with rubber bands.
Although it took some time to get used to, Vince is now able to stroll around freely, speeding around the home and garden as he pleases.
‘The vets took Vince’s measurements and Nathan made him a prototype foot out of a Lego wheel and fixed it on using rubber bands,’ said Kara.
‘It was custom-made so it fit Vince exactly.
‘He’s getting on well with it on a flat surface at the moment. He seems to have got the hang out it now.
‘The test will come when he’s more active in the warm weather as he loves climbing.’
Nathan now plans to make Vince a permanent wheel to be fixed on with resin, so that Vince will be able to walk on different types of terrain.