Canine Skeletal System

The canine skeleton is divided into appendicular and axial skeletons. The appendicular skeleton comprises the bones of the thoracic girdle and thoracic limb (arm, forearm, forepaw), and the bones of the pelvic girdle and pelvic limb (thigh, leg, hindpaw). The axial skeleton includes the bones of the skull, vertebral column, ribs, and sternum.


  • Distinguish between the appendicular and axial skeltons.
  • Locate and identify the bones of the appendicular and axial skeletons.
  • Identify the major features of the bones that comprise the thoracic girdle and thoracic limb; pelvic girdle and pelvic limb; the skull; vertebral column; and thoracic cage.