RCC students gaining statewide recognition for invention

MEDFORD, Ore. — A group of Rogue Community College students is gaining statewide recognition for a 3D printing invention that’s helping handicapped animals.

It’s called, Printed Pet Prosthetics, and it’s proving hope for animals with a lost limb.

“We wanted to restore movement and come up with something more viable and affordable,” Stormi Backus, Public Relations Officer for Printed Pets Prosthetics, said.

The groups CEO, Loren Langdon, is a former vet tech and has firsthand experience with animals who have undergone amputations.

Student Backus says Langdon taught them that there aren’t many options for owners to replace a limb after an animal has lost it.

“So many canines come through with no option once they lose a leg,” Backus said. “It was basically popsicle sticks duct-taped to your dog.”

According to Langdon, a pet prosthesis can cost upwards of $1,300 but that doesn’t account for other costs. He says owners would likely have to meet with a special and travel to another state to be able to get a prosthetic leg.

“In Oregon at least, there’s really not any sort of prosthesis options for dogs,” Langdon said. “They almost always come back with arthritis or hip dysplasia after like a year or two.”

Those reasons are why the group is trying to make a more affordable and attainable option for pet owners and their furry family members.

“The prosthesis makes a huge difference, they live longer, they’re healthier so that’s the goal,” Langdon said.

In June, the group won first place for the best community college category at InventOR Collegiate Challenge.

The competition is a statewide inventing competition that pushes students from different schools across Oregon to solve problems in the community or environment.

Printed Pets Prosthetics won $5,500 dollars to continue to move forward with the product.

“We’d been working so hard and knowing that people are willing to invest in this project and knowing that people care about it just as much as we do is really the fuel that the fire needed to keep going and make it a reality,” Backus said.

 

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