Many of you have probably seen some of the articles by news agencies around the world about Cola the amputated dog and his “Blades”. It is a wonderful story of a dog that can continue to run and play thanks to his prosthetic legs. It is amazing to see how much attention he has got! Here is a link to a couple of the stories:
When you see him run and play with his buddies you realize that he is the best ever ambassador for amputees. First of all, Cola doesn’t behave or think he is any different from the other dogs just because he has prosthetic legs. Secondly his friends do not treat him any different than they treat other dogs. Our hope is that Cola’s attitude to himself and his dog buddies will help to change the attitude amongst humans as well! This is especially true for children. Schools, playgrounds and other places where children get together can be a very tough environment to a child with disabilities! UNICEF wrote the following:
“Children with disabilities are one of the most marginalized and excluded groups in society. Facing daily discrimination in the form of negative attitudes, lack of adequate policies and legislation, they are effectively barred from realizing their rights to healthcare, education and even survival.”
To enforce rules and legislation is not enough. People have to change ATTITUDE towards disability!!!!
We have to learn from the animals how they deal with their situation just like Cola and his friends. Our job is to reduce the consequences of a disability by providing the necessary support and Assistive health technology like prosthetics and orthotics.
If disabled children would get the same attention like Cola have got we would live in a much better world.
With the help of stories like Cola’s, we hope that we can be part of a major attitude change towards amputees and disabilities over all!
Bengt Soderberg CPO (Designer of Colas Prosthetics)
Teddy Fagerström Orthopaedic Surgeon