Christmas came early for Jaxon, a rescued three-legged canine waiting on a prosthetic limb since September. Tim and Lucinda Church rescued the 1-year-old black labrador-great Dane mix from the Jackson County Animal Care & Control Center in August.
Church decided to adopt Jaxon and help him with his disability after a match could not be found.
Since 1992, Church has helped find homes for more than 200 animals by fostering them at the center.
After several stops and starts of taking measurements, castings and temporary prosthetics, Orthopets, a Denver-based firm specializing in custom pet orthotics, shipped Jaxon's leg just after Thanksgiving.
"It was a long process to get it," Church said, "almost two months."
Jaxon's life is better now with the prosthetic leg, Church said.
"He's able to use his leg so it's not just withering away," he said.
Soon after being fitted with his new leg has been running on all fours. Bounding across the parking lot, Jaxon easily fields one of a dozen well-worn tennis balls found around the center.
Church said the quality of Jaxon's life has improved since getting the prosthetic leg. For the next few weeks, however, Jaxon will wear the prosthesis in the morning and evening until he adjusts to the device.
After an article about Jaxon appeared in the Tidings recently, more than $500 was donated to help offset costs.
"It's been a very good feeling living in this community and having people be so generous and heart-felt," Church said.