Want to watch this video? Sign up for the course here. Or enter your email below to watch one free video.

Unlock This Video Now for FREE

This video is normally available to paying customers.
You may unlock this video for FREE. Enter your email address for instant access AND to receive ongoing updates and special discounts related to this topic.



Internal anatomy would normally start at the head end with the brain, which is a really important organ. Not much we can do when we are looking at the brain; we can not hear it, we can not touch it, we can not see it. So up there we do not really know what is going on in there, but this is where the brain would be. The spinal cord will run from the brain all the way down to the tail through a nice cage that the vertebrae have for it and keep it hopefully nice and safe in there. Moving down, when you go to the vet's, you will notice that they will examine your animal by the examination of the internal organs, by listening to the chest and then feeling in the abdomen. So in the chest, the main two organs that we have in there is the heart, which lays on the side roughly where the elbow meets the body wall. So when you bring the elbow back, you slide it back and it meets the chest there, this is roughly where the heart is. It normally lays between ribs three and six of the chest.

The lungs will be on both sides as they are with us and they will lay all the way back through the chest cavity. When you come to the abdomen, or what you may call the stomach, but it is not just the stomach that lives in here, you have the stomach which is fairly high up in the animal and is often just with inside the rib cage as well, although it is in the abdominal section, the abdominal cavity of the animal. So the stomach lays quite high up in the abdomen, what we would say is cranially.

You then have the liver, which is also in the same spot there in the abdomen. There are several liver lobes in animals, it can vary from species to species as to how many lobes there may be, but sometimes you will be able to feel them when you are abdominally palpating an animal and sometimes you will not, it is just whatever is normal for that animal. Coming further back, higher up on each side we have the kidneys. So we have a left kidney and a right kidney.

The right kidney is always slightly further forwards than the left kidney is in all animals. And again, when you are palpating in the abdomen you may or may not feel those and that may be a sign that there is something wrong if you can feel them, but you normally could not. Further back, we have the intestines, the small intestines which come from the stomach then move into the large intestine. In certain species there is also a cecum, other species there is not a cecum. Again, your vet will be feeling for that depending on what animal you have brought in for them. We then have the bladder, which if it is full is normally palpable in most animals. If it is empty you tend not to be able to feel it.

Further back you have, in male animals, you have the prostate gland and again, may or may not be able to feel that depending on the species and also depending on if there is something wrong with it or not. Then further back from there, you have the colon, which is the end of the large intestine and then obviously the rectum, where that is the end of the animal.