Do Dogs Have Armpits? Understanding Your Pup’s Unique Anatomy

When it comes to our canine companions, we know they have features like floppy ears, wagging tails, and wet noses. But armpits? You may be surprised to discover that just like humans, dogs have armpits too!

These distinct folds where your dog’s front legs meet its chest serve some very important purposes. Armpits help your four-legged friend move their limbs freely and contain lymph nodes that are part of their immune system. Dogs also have apocrine glands in their armpits that produce pheromones for communication.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the wonder of doggy armpits. We’ll explore where they’re located, what they look like, and how they help your pup stay healthy and happy. You’ll learn some tips for keeping your dog’s armpits clean and detecting any signs of trouble.

What are armpits?

In humans, armpits (or axillae) are the areas on each side of the upper chest where the arm connects to the shoulder. Armpits are created by folds of skin that form hollows beneath the arms.

Dogs have the same anatomical features. A dog’s armpits are located up high on the inside of their front legs. Exactly where the top of the front leg meets the chest, you’ll notice some extra skin that forms a little pit or hollow.

This sunken area between the arm and chest is your dog’s armpit. The armpit allows flexibility for your dog to move their front legs and shoulders. When your dog runs or plays, its front limbs can swing back and forth freely thanks to having armpits.

Armpits in Dogs & Humans
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Do all dogs have armpits?

The answer is yes – all dogs have armpits! Armpits are not unique to certain breeds or individual dogs. They are a standard part of the anatomy of all canines.

Every furry friend from Great Danes to Chihuahuas has two armpits – one under each front leg. The armpits may be more visible on short-haired dogs, but they are present on long-haired dogs too, even if the pit is covered by fur.

Some people may go their whole lives with dogs and never notice their armpits. But make no mistake – those armpits are there doing their job! They just tend to blend into a dog’s chest thanks to being covered by fur.

So whether you have a mutt or a purebred pooch, you can be sure they have a set of armpits. The armpits may differ somewhat in size and shape based on the dog’s breed and size, but they are universally present in all dogs.

What do dog armpits look like?

A dog’s armpits may not be immediately obvious when you look at your pup. But if you peek under their front legs, you’ll see folds of skin forming pit-like hollows.

Dog armpits are covered by fur in most breeds, so they blend into the chest and arm. However, the pitted shape formed by loose skin is noticeable upon closer inspection. The armpit fur may be slightly thinner than the surrounding areas.

Do Dogs Have Armpits? Armpits in Dogs
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In some short-haired breeds like Dobermans and Greyhounds, the armpit is more visible. It appears as an oval-shaped area of pinkish, wrinkled skin in the hollow where arm meets chest. The skin may be dotted with hair follicles or stubble.

So in summary, dog armpits look like sunk-in hollows formed by looser skin, sometimes with sparser fur growth. They allow flexible movement of the front legs. Keep an eye out for this anatomical feature next time you pet your pooch!

What is the purpose of armpits in dogs?

Armpits serve several important functions for our canine companions:

  • Allow flexibility: The folds of skin enable dogs to move their front legs freely. Without armpits, movement would be restricted.
  • Contain lymph nodes: Lymph nodes in the armpits are part of the immune system, helping fight infection. Swollen nodes may indicate illness.
  • House apocrine glands: These glands produce pheromones for scent communication. Dogs sniff armpits to gather social and reproductive information.
  • Regulate temperature: Armpits support thermoregulation since the inner limbs don’t have fur. Blood vessels dilate to release heat.
  • Indicator of health: Red, swollen armpits or lumps can signal issues like infections, inflammations, or parasite bites. Owners should check their dog’s armpits regularly.

So in many ways, armpits are just as useful for dogs as humans! They play integral roles in movement, immunity, communication, and temperature regulation. Make sure to keep an eye on your pup’s armpits for signs of health or problems.

Caring for your dog’s armpits

To keep your dog’s armpits healthy, here are some tips:

  • Cleaning: Gently wipe your dog’s armpits with a warm, wet cloth when bathing them. Check for any odors, discharge, parasites, or skin irritation. Keeping armpits clean prevents infection.
  • Trimming: If your dog has long armpit fur, trim it to avoid matting and debris accumulation. This allows air circulation and keeps the area dry. But avoid nicking sensitive skin with clippers.
  • Check for issues: Regularly inspect armpits and feel for any new lumps, swelling, injuries or hot spots. See the vet promptly if you find anything concerning.
  • Massage: Lightly massaging armpits can help reduce tension and strain from exercise. But go gently – they are sensitive!
  • Parasites: Use preventative flea/tick medication. Check armpits for any bite marks or parasites which may lead to infection.

By gently caring for your dog’s armpits, you can keep them healthy and comfortable. Be attentive but cautious, as armpits are delicate areas. With regular TLC, your dog’s armpits will stay happy!


To sum up, dogs do indeed have armpits – just like humans! They are located high up where your dog’s front legs connect to their chest. Armpits contain lymph nodes, and glands, and provide flexibility for the front limbs.

While we may take them for granted, armpits allow our furry friends to move properly and support good health. So the next time you cuddle your pup, appreciate those small hollows that make a big difference.

Paying attention to your dog’s armpits can also help you spot potential problems early. Redness, swelling, discharge, or lumps warrant a trip to the vet. With gentle regular care, you can keep your best friend’s armpits healthy.

Do your own dog’s armpits have any funny quirks or unique features? Share your armpit experiences in the comments! I’d love to learn more about the underarms of dogs of all shapes, sizes, and breeds. Understanding your dog’s anatomy is part of being a responsible pet parent. Learn more about Do Dogs Have Arms or Legs?


Do dogs have armpits or leg pits?

Yes, dogs have armpits but don’t in the exact same way humans do. However, they have corresponding areas near their front legs that serve similar functions. These areas can be thought of as “leg pits” or the “axillary region” in dogs.

Do dogs have armpit glands?

While dogs don’t have armpit glands in the same way humans do, they have sweat glands located in their paw pads. These sweat glands are not as numerous as in humans and play a secondary role in cooling. Dogs primarily regulate their body temperature through panting. Learn about what temperature Bernese mountain dogs like.

Do dogs sweat under their armpits?

Dogs do not sweat under their armpits as humans do. While they have sweat glands in their paw pads, dogs rely more on panting to release heat and cool down. Panting allows for the evaporation of moisture from their tongues and respiratory tract.

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Why does my dog’s armpit hurt?

If your dog is showing signs of discomfort in the armpit area, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian. Armpit discomfort in dogs can be caused by various factors such as muscle strain, injury, skin irritation, or even an underlying medical condition. A professional evaluation will help determine the cause and provide appropriate treatment.

Why do dogs lick human’s armpits?

Dogs may lick humans’ armpits for several reasons. Dogs have a keen sense of smell, and the armpit area contains scent glands that produce unique odors. Licking the armpits could be their way of exploring and gathering information about you. Additionally, dogs may lick armpits as a sign of affection or to seek attention. However, if excessive licking or discomfort is present, it’s essential to monitor the behavior and consult with a professional if necessary.

Do dogs have lymph nodes in their armpits?

Yes, dogs have lymph nodes located throughout their bodies, including in the axillary region near their front legs. Lymph nodes play an important role in the immune system by filtering lymph fluid and helping to fight off infections.

Are dog’s armpits bald or hairy?

The hairiness of a dog’s armpits can vary depending on the breed and individual characteristics. Some dogs may have more hair in the axillary region, while others may have less. It’s important to note that hair in this area can provide insulation and protection, but excessive hair can also contribute to heat retention.

Read more about dog’s health

How Soon Can a Dog Get Pregnant After Having Puppies?

Why Do Dogs Walk in Circles Before They Die 

Should I Buy a Puppy With An Umbilical Hernia

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