Guinea pig who was found abandoned with broken bones gets wheelchair

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Monday, October 26, 2015
Estella the guniea pig was discovered earlier this year on the side of the road with a broken back. This month she got a wheelchair, making her mobile once again.
Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary

Earlier this year Estella the guinea pig was lying on the side of the road with badly broken bones. Today, though, Estella is happy and healthy and getting around with the help of a custom-fit wheelchair.

When Estella was discovered, some of her bones had been broken so badly she couldn't use her lower body. Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary in Stockton, Calif., where the guines pig lives now, believes that someone -- probably a child -- had squeezed her too hard.

Estella had to get around using only upper body strength, explained Christine Morrissey, manager of Harvest Home.

Her friend Pip, who Harvest Home calls her "guinea pig husband," was found with her. They were taken to a local animal shelter, but Estella received no veterinary care or pain relief for the month she was there, according to Harvest Home.

Morrissey told ABC News that Pip played a big part in keeping Estella's spirits up after she was discovered.

"Their companionship is a very huge part of why she's still alive and happy despite everything," she said. "They're together all of the time. They love sharing strawberries and grapes together."

Unfortunately Estella had a long road to recovery, as there was no way to make it possible for the guinea pig to use her back legs again.

"A local veterinarian here confirmed she had permanent paralysis of her lower body," Morrissey said. "There was nothing we could do to reverse the damage, but we wanted to do something to help her with daily exercise and enrichment aside from pain medication."

So the organization started a social media campaign to buy Estella a custom-fit wheelchair to help her get around. That wheelchair arrived earlier this month, and now Estella -- who, along with Pip, has found a forever home in Harvest Home -- is on the move.

"She's quite a little titan in her wheelchair," Morrissey said. "She can forget about her past trauma."