Chiari‐like malformation and Syringomyelia in American Brussels Griffon dogs

Publication date 1st September 2014
Authors AC Freeman, SR Platt, M Kent, E Huguet, Clare Rusbridge, S Holmes


To characterize the clinical and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) features of CM and SM in the ABG breed.


Eighty‐four American Kennel Club registered ABG dogs were recruited.


Prospective study. Complete histories and neurologic examinations were obtained before MRI. Images were blindly reviewed and calculations were made by using OsiriX. All analyses were performed by Student's t‐test, Spearman's correlation, ANOVA, and chi‐square test where appropriate.


Chiari‐like malformation and SM were present in 65% and 52% of dogs, respectively. Twenty‐eight percent of dogs had neurologic deficits and 20% had neck pain. Mean central canal (CC) transverse height was 2.5 mm with a mean length of 3.6 cervical vertebrae. Neurologic deficits were significantly associated with a larger syrinx (P = .04, P = .08) and syrinx size increased with age (P = .027). SM was associated with a smaller craniocervical junction (CCJ) height (P = .04) and larger ventricles (P = .0001; P < .001).


Syringomyelia and CM are prevalent in American Brussels Griffon dogs. Syrinx size is associated with neurologic deficits, CM, larger ventricles, a smaller craniocervical junction height, neurologic deficits, and cerebellar herniation. Fifty‐two percent of dogs with a SM were clinically normal.