Selfridge J., Hedderley S., Charlton S., Cunliffe C. (2016)

When it comes to back care, size really doesn’t matter. In African safari elephants, does carrying a rider - or multiple riders -impact on musculoskeletal integrity?

Oral presentation at 3rd International Veterinary Congress, London, August 2016

Published in Journal of Veterinary Science & Technology. 7 (5) Proceedings of the 3rd InternationalVeterinary Congress OMICS International


  • Investigation of the effect of weight bearing on joint and limb segment angles in fore and hind limbs of the ridden elephant.
  • The presence of rider(s) influences MS angles and ROM in the limb segments and joints of elephants
  • The use of a saddle may modify the potential for musculoskeletal compromise.



Scientific Evidence


Animal carers need to be convinced to use interventions that are based on sound scientific evidence. Investigation is necessary to identify and strive to understand the interdependence between and among specific patterns of human behaviour. The linked paper by Peter et al (2013) discusses the use of implementation research to study barriers to and methods of promoting the systematic application of research findings in practice, and demonstrates a contribution to more effective health, clinical policies and programmes. 



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