External Anatomy

Video 7 of 55
5 min 49 sec

Understanding Pet Anatomy: A Guide for Pet First Aiders

1. Head and Facial Features

Nose and Muzzle: Identify the nose and the surrounding muzzle area.

Mouth: Recognize the upper and lower jaw for injury assessment.

Ears: Different breeds may have distinct ear shapes, influencing potential problems.

2. Neck and Back

Neck: Neck size and length can vary among breeds, affecting injury susceptibility.

Back: Consider the length of the back concerning leg proportions and potential vulnerabilities.

3. Front Legs

Shoulder: Locate the shoulder's spine for reference.

Shoulder Joint: Identify the shoulder joint's position.

Elbow: Recognize the elbow's location.

Forearm: Understand the forearm as part of the leg.

Wrist (Carpus): Know the carpus or wrist area.

Paws: Observe the foot with its digits and possible dewclaw.

4. Chest and Ribcage

Chest: Understand the chest area containing the ribcage.

Ribs: Count the ribs and identify the last rib, including the sternum.

5. Back Legs

Hip: Locate the hip joint and its movement.

Thigh: Recognize the thigh muscle.

Knee (Stifle): Refer to the knee as the stifle in dogs and cats.

Ankle (Hock): Understand the ankle area known as the hock in animals.

Foot: Identify the foot with four digits (in some animals).

6. Tail

Tail: Note the tail's length and characteristics, which can vary among breeds.