Skipper, the 'miracle' puppy with 6 legs, is beating the odds

ByWill Ganss ABCNews logo
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Skipper, the 'miracle' pup with 6 legs, is beating the odds
Skipper, a newborn Aussie- border collie mix, is being called a "miracle."

OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma -- Meet Skipper.

She's a newborn Aussie- border collie mix, and she's being called a "miracle."

Dr. Tina Neel and the staff at Neel Veterinary Hospital in Oklahoma thought they'd seen it all.

"We're 24/7; we've never closed in over 20 years," Neel said.

They remained open even when this week's massive winter storm slammed the area around their Oklahoma City location.

Twenty-five employees stayed on location for 72 hours straight. And when the storm finally passed, in came Skipper.

"She just acts like a normal puppy. It's amazing," Neel said.

Skipper just happens to have six legs.

"She has duplicate organs basically from her waist down, and they all seem to be functioning," Neel said.

More detail was posted on the Neel Veterinary Hospital's Facebook page:

"She has a type of congenital conjoining disorders called monocephalus dipygus and monocephalus rachipagus dibrachius tetrapus which simply means she has 1 head and chest cavity but 2 pelvic regions, 2 lower urinary tracts, 2 reproductive systems, 2 tails and 6 legs among other things. It is likely that she was going to have a litter mate but they did not separate in utero. She also has signs of spina bifida along her spine."

Skipper was rejected by her mother, which is how she wound up with Dr. Neel, who, amazingly, found nothing majorly wrong with the pup.

"This is the first puppy that they know of that was born like this alive," Neel said.

Skipper has already learned to climb out of her bed and is a healthy weight for her age.

"She acts like a strong healthy puppy so we want to give her the chance," Neel said. "It makes me really happy because she's so strong! She's kind of like the underdog, you know. You're rooting for her."

But no puppy pity party here. While her eight brothers and sisters eat together, Skipper is more than happy to be bottle fed.

"She's eating for one and a half," Neel said.

Dr. Neel thinks Skipper will likely need some physical therapy as she continues to grow and gets used to walking around on six paws.

If you'd like to follow along or learn how to help, check out 'Skipper's Journey' on Facebook.