Fish Gets Prosthetic Eye So Other Fish Will Stop Picking On Him
Things are finally looking up for this sweet one-eyed fish - all thanks to the kindness of a few caring people, and a bit of nail polish.
Up until recently, the colorful swimmer had been having a rough time inside the tank where he lives as a pet with a group of other fish. After developing cataracts in one of his eyes, Kiwi's tank mates seemed to turn on him, nipping at his tail like a bunch of little finned bullies.
Fearing for Kiwi's safety, his owner Julie Morgan decided to separate him - and to get him some help.
Kiwi was brought to the Kersting Veterinary Hospital, in Missouri, where his sad story didn't land on deaf ears. There, clinic staff decided to perform surgery on the affected eye, ultimately opting to remove it entirely, Fox 2 News reports.
Rather than leave Kiwi looking even more different than he did before, now that the eye socket was empty, veterinarian Megan Baebler had an idea to help the bullied fish better fit in.
She made him a prosthetic eye from a tiny piece of acrylic.
"I actually hand-painted the eye myself," Baebler told Fox 2. "I used a mixture of some nail polish and some eye shadow pigments, actually, to give it some iridescence."
With that, Kiwi was placed under anesthesia to receive the rare faux fish eye transplant.
Sure enough, the results couldn't have been more true to life.
It's been a few weeks now since Kiwi got his new prosthetic eye, and though he's still recovering in his own tank at home, Morgan says that he's doing great and seems happy to be back to his old self. When Kiwi does finally return to the other fish, we hope they agree.
All of this effort to improve Kiwi's well-being might seem like a waste to some folks, but not to his vet, and certainly not to his owner.
"A lot of other people would say, 'Yes, put him down. Go ahead, it's just a fish,'" said Morgan. "Well, my opinion is nothing is just a something. And if I could give him quality of life, why not?"