Meet Gamera, the All-Terrain Tortoise With a Wheel for a Leg

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AP Photo / BCU / WSU, Henry Moore, Jr.

Gamera, a 12-year-old, African spur-thighed tortoise, shows off his new front "leg" at Washington State University in Pullman, Wash.

The tale of The Tortoise and the Hare didn’t factor in this turtle’s newest innovation.

Vets from Washington State University have helped a 12-year-old African tortoise named Gamera get back on its feet (all three of them) by providing it with an unusual new appendage — a swiveling wheel.

Gamera’s owner brought it to the WSU hospital in April. The tortoise was suffering from a severe leg injury, the cause of which was unknown. Vets determined that the injury was life-threatening, and the tortoise ended up needing the leg amputated.

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The WSU staff used some creative and cost-effective thinking to come up with a way to get Gamera moving again. According to the Associated Press, they headed to Ace Hardware and bought a few different types of wheels and some epoxy adhesive. Soon, the tortoise was back to the races, with  a caster-style wheel attached to the underside of his shell.

Officials have reported that Gamera is thriving with his new leg. He doesn’t even mind that he now vaguely resembles an office chair.


As evidenced in the video above, Gamera is simply on a roll. (Sorry, we couldn’t help ourselves.)

Erin Skarda is a reporter at TIME. Find her on Twitter at @ErinLeighSkarda. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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