A CRIPPLED dwarf bull who faced being put down is learning to walk again using a specially made wheelchair.
Duke, who is just half the size of an average Hereford bullock, was going to be shot after being badly injured in an attack by other cows.
He was rescued by Sharon Lawlor who runs an animal sanctuary and has spent £10,000 nursing him back to health.
Now, using a specially made wheelchair, Duke is slowly beginning to walk by himself again.
Amazing video footage shows the mini bullock taking tentative steps, fitted to his wheel cart.
Supported on either side by the device with two wheels, similar to stabilisers on a bike, Duke can be seen slowly getting his confidence back.
Duke learns to walk in the specially adapted wheelchair.
The remarkable recovery started just four months ago when the two-year-old arrived at the at his new home in Malton, North Yorkshire.
Since then he has become “part of the family” and has been befriended by another resident – Kevin the lamb.
Another video shows Duke with Kevin playing together and even preening each other.
Duke struggling to stand up, before he learned to walk again.
Speaking about when she first saw Duke Sharon (49) explained: “We fell in love with him the moment we saw him.
“Sadly he was destined for death by a bullet if we could not bring him home.
“He’d got damaged by the other cows. We think he possibly had a fractured pelvis and neurological damage. We basically had to teach him to walk again.
“He was sick, he couldn’t stand very well. He needed a lot of care. He’s had acupuncture, chiropractors, everything we could possibly do.”
Duke and pal Kevin the sheep get to know each other.
She continued: “We spent five or six hours a day with him at first – basically just standing with him to get used to standing again.
“We’ve now had a third fitting of his wheel cart. Once he gets his wheels he’ll be able to walk a bit more. He’s got no confidence, hopefully that will give him confidence.”
The device was made locally using a design to make wheel carts for dogs.
“Because Duke is quite heavy he’s had to modify it a bit,” Sharon explained.
Commenting on how much it has cost to help Duke walk again she estimated about “£10,000 so far.”
Love – Duke “purrs” his approval to rescuer Sharon
She said: “I know I’ve done the right thing, I only have to look at him to know I’ve done the right thing.
“He’s definitely got quality of life. He’s one of the most affectionate animals I’ve ever come across.
“We’ve become so attached to him he’s like a family member.
“Everyone loves him. He’s got a best friend – Kevin the lamb. He came in at about the same time as Duke.
“Duke loves Kevin and Kevin loves Duke. Kevin has even learn to undo to latch [to the Dukes shed].”
Sharon’s partner Warren Evans (45) said: “He’s like a child, it’s the same sort of principle.
“The biggest thing he’s done is to stand up on his own. We’re very proud.”
Speaking about the wheel cart he explained: “When he gets in it he’ll learn to walk properly – it gives him confidence.
“The idea is to get him walking on his own. It will be a long time.”
You can find out more about Duke and animal sanctuary at: www.calfsanctuary.com