Veterinary Forensic Osteology

Published: May 23rd, 2012

Category: News

In the field of forensic medicine, bones are utilized to tell the story of the victim’s fate long after the soft tissues have disappeared.

Forensic anthropologists interpret the clues provided to them from bones in order to determine the nature and type of weapon used to inflict injury, the direction of force, and minimum number of traumatic injury sites on the individual.  Bone can also provide reliable information on the identity of the victim.  The rapidly growing field of veterinary forensic osteology builds upon the vast amount of knowledge held by forensic anthropologists and applies this information to veterinary medicine.  Identification of antemortem, perimortem, and postmortem injury is often critical to a legal investigation.  Additionally, bite marks, disease, age estimation, and sex determination of the animal can provide additional information to law enforcement, attorneys, crime scene investigators, and forensic science analysts.  The ASPCA Veterinary Forensic Sciences program provides experts in forensic anthropology, archaeology, forensic sciences, and veterinary forensic medicine as a service to law enforcement and legal investigators involved in all aspects of casework related to animal crime.