It’s common to see dogs with docked tails, but several breeds are naturally tailless. These include French and English Bulldogs, Brittany Spaniels, and Welsh Corgis.
Because it’s common to see dogs without tails, whether natural or docked, many people wonder why dogs have tails in the first place. One of the most common questions people ask is: do dogs have bones in their tails? This is a great question, and the answer is more complex than you might expect.
To get to the bottom of this canine mystery, keep reading! In this post, we’ll give you the details on the dog’s tail!
Do Dogs Have Bones in Their Tails?
Dogs’ tails are indeed comprised of bones. A quick look at the dog skeleton reveals the tail is an extension of its spine. This appendage comprises a series of bones, muscles, tendons, and blood vessels.
The number of vertebrae in a tail varies among dog breeds. Some dogs have long, flexible tails with numerous vertebrae. Meanwhile, others have shorter tails with fewer vertebrae.
So, why do dogs have tails? The primary role of a dog’s tail is communication. A wagging tail signifies a spectrum of emotions – from happiness to excitement to caution.
Tail positions and movements are a fundamental part of their intricate body language. They allow dogs to convey messages to other dogs, animals, and even humans.
Additionally, a dog’s tail helps maintain balance. It acts as a counterbalance during swift movements and assists in navigating uneven terrain.
Do Dogs Feel Pain in Their Tails?
While tails do have bones, the question of whether dogs feel pain in their tails is relevant. After all, many breeders remove them.
Dogs do have nerve endings in their tails, which makes them sensitive to touch and pressure.
So, if a dog’s tail is injured or stepped on, it can cause pain and discomfort. Injuries to the tail can range from mild to severe. In cases of severe trauma, a tail might need medical attention.
Can You Break a Dog’s Tail?
With a severe blow or trauma, it is possible for a dog’s tail to break. This would be very painful to a dog, causing swelling and potential complications. If your dog experiences this injury, seeking veterinary care is vital.
The Ethics of Docked Tails
Tail docking is the practice of surgically removing a part of a dog’s tail.
Historically, a cut off dog tail was for practical reasons. Often, it prevented injuries in working dogs. Yet, nowadays, the main goal is to adhere to breed standards.
Because this aim is trivial, tail docking is criticized by many, even illegal in some parts of the world. After all, dogs use their tails for practical reasons. Shortening it simply for aesthetic purposes raises concerns.
Tails Aren’t Just for Wagging!
Do dogs have bones in their tails? Yes, they absolutely do! These bones allow dogs’ tails to be functional, serving communicative purposes and helping them balance.
Understanding the complexity of dogs’ tails raises our appreciation for these remarkable creatures and their intricate designs! If you’d like to read more about dogs, head to the animals section of our website! There you’ll find tips for caring for your pets and more interesting facts.