Do Dogs Have Bones in Their Tails?


Do Dogs Have Bones in their Tails?

At Central Animal Hospital, we are always eager to help pet owners learn more about their pets needs and risks. If you have a dog, we don’t expect you to be an authority on canine anatomy, but we do think it’s helpful to learn a little more about the musculoskeletal system that keeps your dog active and healthy.

Anatomy of the Dog’s Tail

Let’s start with the basics: yes, dogs have bones in their tails. Because your dog’s tail is more flexible and mobile than his legs or arms, it’s easy to mistake the tail for cartilage or muscle. However, the canine tail is actually made up of a string of small bones. Similar to the vertebrae in your spinal column, each of these bones are enclosed in a muscle, which controls movements such as curling, turning, lifting, dropping, and wagging.

Important Functions of the Tail Bone

The easiest way to spot a happy dog is to look for that wagging tail, and when your dog is afraid or ashamed, you can tell by the telltale tail tucked between the legs. However, a dog’s tail is meant for more than just communication. In addition to indicating current emotions or needs, dogs’ tails are also responsible for keeping dogs balanced and oriented, especially when they’re walking across narrow surfaces, swimming, or making sharp turns.

Our Veterinary Care for Tail Fractures

If you think your dog’s tail might be broken, contact Central Animal Hospital right way to schedule an appointment. Our Scarsdale animal hospital is fully equipped to diagnose and treat canine tail factures, and our veterinary team works hard to minimize risks and manage symptoms along the way.

Diagnosing Tail Fractures

Your veterinarian may be able to diagnose or rule out a tail fracture simply by performing a physical exam, but in many cases we use X-ray imaging to diagnose this injury. Our X-ray equipment allows us to understand more about the nature of Scarsdale pet fractures, including the severity, location, and how long ago it occurred. If we do spot a fracture in your dog’s tail, the next step is discussing your treatment options.

Treatments for Tail Fractures

Some patients have bad breaks that require surgery to restore internal stability. Because we must expose the bone and insert screws or pins, we put patients under anesthesia for fracture procedures. Throughout the surgery, our veterinary team will minimize the risks associated with intubation and anesthesia by constantly monitoring the patient’s vital signs, including the following indicators:

Respiration rate
Heart rate
Oxygen levels
Body temperature

Of course, like any other dog fracture, some tail fractures may heal without surgical intervention. At our animal hospital in Westchester County, we want your pet’s risks to be as low as possible, so we will use external stabilization methods if at all possible. Splints, bandages, and casts are among the most common treatment methods for hairline tail fractures and other simple dog tail injuries.

Call (914) 723-1250 to learn more about our canine veterinary care for pet fractures in Scarsdale. With our help, your dog’s tail will be wagging again in no time.