Animals Video

By Randal Coombs

 

An adorable tiny tortoise whose legs stick up in the air permanently uses mini skateboard wheels to help him get around.

When little Helix hatched on July 31, owner Randal Betz was stunned when he realised the reptile was suffering with spina bifida.

Because of the condition, his legs constantly face upwards leaving it difficult for him to walk around, manoeuvre and essentially eat.

Having had a brainstorm, Randal, from Wilmington, Delaware, worked out he could attach wheels from a mini skateboard to Helix’s body with some non-toxic glue dots

Randal said: “The wheels have been a godsend for Helix as he just loves exploring outside.

“In total he’s got seven different axles and 12 different pairs of coloured wheels.

“I take adhesive glue dots, place the axle onto the glue and then place the axle on the convex portion of Helix’s plastron.”

To make sure there are no complications for Helix, Randal, a medical sales consultant, soaks his tortoise every night.

Randal said: “The glue dots are the same ones they use to attach credits to letters in the post.

“They are non-toxic but there is no chance he will eat them anyway.

“They don’t have any fumes or chemicals they release.

“They come off very easily, which means i can soak him more often without worrying about the axles getting rusty.

“He needs to be kept on damp paper towels so its easier for him to walk on and easier for the wheels to roll.”