Meet Motala, a 50 year old elephant from Thailand who lost her front left leg in 1999 after stepping on a land mine left over from ongoing conflicts along the Thai-Myanmar border. When the accident occurred Motala was a working elephant who moved trees for a living. She was simply foraging for food in the forest when she stepped on the mine.
Although her owners tried to save poor Motala’s leg, the limb was so badly damaged that it eventually had to be amputated below the knee. It wasn’t until 2006 that she was able to receive her first artificial leg. It was only a temporary solution, but she successfully learned to walk on it. In 2009 Motala received her first permanent prosthesis, made for her at the Friends of the Asian Elephant (FAE) elephant hospital in the Mae Yao National Reserve in Thailand. Because prosthetic legs must be changed according to weight, Motala has been given other legs accordingly and received a new one last year, her third.