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Tiny Tonka the goat has surgery on all four legs

Tiny Tonka the goat has surgery on all four legs

Credit: NMF

by SUSAN WYATT / The Pet Dish


Posted on June 26, 2013 at 2:32 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 26 at 3:36 PM

Tonka, the tiny baby goat born with problems in his legs that prevented him from standing, has had surgery on all four legs and is doing great.

New Moon Farm Goat Rescue and Sanctuary took in the newborn Nigerian dwarf buckling last month.

Ellen Felsenthal of NMF saidTonka was one of a set of quadruplets. When the owner saw how bent his legs were, she set him aside, assuming he wouldn't survive the night. When she found him still alive in the morning, she contacted NMF.

(NMF is of the opinion that if you don't have time to deal with less than perfect outcomes, perhaps breeding animals isn't the best idea, but that’s another story for another day.)

Tonka's front legs didn’t straighten out completely - the tendons on the back of his legs were too tight. His hind legs were the opposite - stretched out straight behind, and hard to flex.

When he arrived on May 17, Tonka couldn't stand without assistance. [WATCH video] Within days, his legs were starting to "stretch" and he was becoming more stable. His hind legs had improved enough that he was actually standing on his feet (instead of the fronts of his fetlocks).

NMF says for a while Tonka was making steady progress - standing, then walking, then even doing little jumps, mouthing the grass and interested in hay. But then he slid back - stopped standing for more than 30 seconds.

So on June 22 Dr. Hannah Mueller of Cedarbrook Veterinary Care performed surgery on Tonka's back legs and on Monday surgery was performed on his back legs.

Ellen Felsenthal, who runs NMF, says all four of Tonka's legs are in casts, and he stood for the first time in a month.

"Tatonka recovered well from the sedation, and within hours was standing and grazing. We are simply thrilled!" she said.

You can follow Tonka’s progress by visiting

New Moon Farm Goat Rescue and Sanctuary is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of animals in need. Make a donation

Learn more about Goatalympics at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds.