Comparisons between Biped (Human) and Quadruped (Canine/Feline) Intervertebral Disc Disease Chapter uri icon


  • 2015 ACVS Foundation. Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration and herniation are considered the main causes of acute and chronic low back pain in humans, with a lifetime prevalence of over 70% in the global population. Also, dogs commonly suffer from back pain caused by degenerated IVDs subsequently herniating; it is in fact the most common cause of neurological deficits in dogs and is one of the most common causes for euthanasia in dogs less than 10 years of age. A notable difference between human and canine vertebrae is the absence of growth plates in growing human vertebrae and the thicker cartilaginous end plates in humans. IVD degeneration/disease gives rise to similar clinical signs in humans and dogs, with neck or back pain and neurological deficits as the most common features when there is herniation. Importantly, the mechanisms and pathology underlying canine IVDH-associated spinal cord injury (SCI) are similar to those in human traumatic myelopathies.

author list (cited authors)

  • Bergknut, N., Forterre, F., Levine, J. M., Lasser, S. D., & Fingeroth, J. M.

Book Title

  • Advances in Intervertebral Disc Disease in Dogs and Cats

publication date

  • January 1, 2014 11:11 AM