Students at Arnold Burton Technology Center in Salem are putting their technological skills to great use by using a 3-D printer to make a prosthetic leg for a puppy with a foot deformity.

Spartacus, a golden retriever, was born with this issue, and his guardians worked with their veterinarian, Dr. Mark Wadstrom, to find a solution.

“We’re going to try to make a prosthesis, so it keeps his leg straight and helps him with his growing in both legs,” said Dr. Mark Wadstrom, owner of Animal Care Center of Salem.

Spartacus was fitted with his first prosthesis in April this year, lovingly and painstakingly created by students who studied X-rays to design the ideal prototype.

“I think it’s a wonderful learning experience for everybody, me and the kids and the puppy, too,” said Wadstrom.

This month, Spartacus, now three months old, returned to the center to have another fitting for his prosthetic leg.

Cheryl Campbell, one of his guardians, hopes that Spartacus can one day become a therapy dog.

“Because he loves people and he can help them feel good about themselves,” said Campbell.

With his new prosthesis coming along so well, Spartacus will be able to run around expending all that puppy energy with no troubles, and a new generation of animal lovers are developing technology that will help many more animals to come.