A Dog in the UK Born With 6 Legs Takes Up Surfing

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We’re heading full-steam into a great holiday weekend, but the news of the day continues to roll on in, and some of it is heartwarming. People love dogs, and it’s always great to see a homeless pooch find a new master. I’m willing to bet, though, that a six-legged British dog taking up surfing wasn’t on anyone’s list of expected news today – but here we are. Ariel, the six-legged mutt in question, has a new home and is learning the watersports from her new owner.

Ariel, named after Disney’s Little Mermaid, was left outside a B&M store in Pembrokeshire last September. She was only 11 weeks old at the time and was taken in by local centre Greenacres Rescue in Haverfordwest.

As well as six legs, the cocker spaniel was also born with two vulvas and only one kidney.

Ariel’s new owner, Ollie Bird, runs an adaptive surf school in West Wales.

The six-legged condition is almost certainly due to what is known as a “parasitic twin,” an extremely rare condition in which one fetus is partially absorbed by another fetus, which can result in extra limbs or other appendages. Most of these animals don’t survive long, but Ariel is an exception. Since Ariel’s new owner, Mr. Ollie Bird, runs an adaptive surf school, it seems natural that Ariel would be learning to surf.

Mr Bird said Ariel had “settled in well” to her new home.

“She joins us everywhere we go. She actually can walk very well,” he said.

“She does need little breaks now and again, but if we were to go on a walk, I could put her in a bag or I give her lots of stops.

“She’s swimming in the sea, she’s been paddle boarding, surfing, and is just great with kids and families. She’s a very gentle soul, she likes sitting and watching.”

Full credit to Mr. Bird for this act of kindness.

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The relationship between humans and canines is like no other. Dogs work with us, they hunt with us; up here in the Great Land they pull sleds, as they have done for hundreds and hundreds of years. They protect us, they are our constant companions, and they love us unconditionally, even when we don’t deserve it; anyone who says “you can’t buy love” has clearly never had a puppy. Dogs are, in many ways, more faithful companions than we humans have ever had, and possibly more faithful than we deserve.

Kudos to Mr. Bird for returning that faithfulness by giving a home to a pooch that suffers from a rare disability, and for giving Ariel a happy life with a family that loves her.

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