It isn’t a question that’s widely asked…
But, it’s an uncertainty that sits on your mind when you come across the thought.
Do dogs even have Adam’s apples?
If they do, what’s up with that?
Read on to discover:
- The purpose of Adam’s apple in dogs.
- How to properly locate your dog’s Adam’s apples.
- If a female dog or a puppy can also have this body part.
- And that’s just the beginning…
Table of contents
- Do dogs have Adam’s apples?
- What are Adam’s apples for?
- Can you feel a dog’s Adam’s apple?
- Do puppies have Adam’s apples?
- Do female dogs have Adam’s apples?
- Do boy dogs have Adam’s apples?
- Do dogs have a lump in their throat?
Do dogs have Adam’s apples?
Dogs have Adam’s apples, like humans, regardless of their gender. It’s only a prominent growth in their thyroid cartilage. It’s part of the laryngeal skeleton structure. You can feel it in the middle of their throat. That’s why it’s a useful indicator during examinations in that area.
What are Adam’s apples for?
Adam’s apple is just a name for the bulge of cartilage in someone’s larynx. Its use is only to offer protection to the vocal cords. The latter is informally referred to as the voice box.
According to this study, Adam’s apple is the most visible part of the throat.
To be specific, I’m talking about the laryngeal skeleton structure. It consists of 9 cartilages in the larynx.
Then, the largest part of that structure is the thyroid cartilage.
In there, a protrusion is made. It’s called laryngeal prominence. And as it’s referred to in this article and by most people, Adam’s apple.
Its size is why this part of the throat is mostly used as an anatomical landmark.
For example, it’s helpful during emergencies. A specific scenario is when someone needs an emergency airway puncture (cricothyrotomy).
Adam’s apple assists in identifying the cricothyroid membrane, a critical area during the said emergency procedure.
So it’s harder for health professionals to do that procedure for women. That’s because Adam’s apples are less evident in them.
Now, that’s one example of a use of Adam’s apple.
Another use for it is the protection it offers
Cartilage is a type of connective tissue. They’re also present in your nose, ears, and trachea (windpipe).
Because of cartilage growth, Adam’s apple acts like a strong wall that shields the voice box.
With that, it also helps ensure that the following are done with ease:
“But, how did humans come up with the name for this body part?”
Experts say it has something to do with the forbidden fruit that Adam ate. It’s a story from the bible.
Now, it looks as if the fruit is stuck in the throat of men, which have more prominent Adam’s apples.
Then, the initial study I mentioned says that it might be a mistranslation of a Hebrew term. That term is “the swelling of a man.”
The meanings are connected to men. That’s because Adam’s apples are secondary sexual characteristic indicators in men.
Can you feel a dog’s Adam’s apple?
You can feel a dog’s Adam’s apple using your thumb and forefinger. Trace the middle of their throat until you feel large and firm cartilage. That’s their Adam’s apple.
If you’re just looking, their Adam’s apple might be unnoticeable.
So, you can start feeling from the area under their chin.
During that, stay in the middle of their throat and feel it.
When doing so, you must be gentle. Don’t press too hard.
As I mentioned, the larynx ensures smooth breathing…
If you pinch too hard or add force to that area…
You’ll be slightly choking your pooch.
Moreover, it’s a vulnerable area. Many sensitive nerves are present in there and might cause a startling reaction.
By pressing too hard, your pooch might be uncomfortable and let out a cough.
Note: Not all dogs have a prominent Adam’s apple. That’s why, in some cases, you might have a hard time locating it. That occurrence is okay. You don’t have to worry about anything if their Adam’s apple isn’t prominent.
You have to worry if you feel that the area is too large. As if it’s swelling…
Then, that must be a case of…
Laryngitis in dogs
In the medical world, anything ending with an -itis indicates inflammation.
So, that makes laryngitis an inflammation of the larynx.
One sign of this is swelling around a dog’s neck area. To be specific, their Adam’s apple will be affected, too.
According to the Merck Vet Manual, these are the causes of laryngitis in dogs:
- Severe panting.
- Trauma from a breathing tube.
- Excessive vocalization (barking).
- Obstruction in the upper airways.
- Secondary to an allergic reaction.
- Infectious tracheobronchitis (kennel cough)
The signs of laryngitis, aside from swelling, are:
- Bad breath.
- Noisy breathing.
- Difficulty swallowing.
- Rough-sounding barks.
- Harsh and persistent coughing.
This condition needs a veterinarian’s attention immediately.
You may also wonder: Can dogs get a sore throat?
Do puppies have Adam’s apples?
Puppies might not have Adam’s apples. That’s because Adam’s apples is just a term used for the bump in one’s neck. When actually, it’s just a cartilage growth in the larynx that’s present in every dog.
In humans, Adam’s apple becomes more prominent in males when they hit puberty.
There are limited studies about that on the subject of dogs.
However, when puppies grow, dog parents notice that their voice changes.
That development can be seen when dogs start to mature.
According to AKC, puppies reach sexual maturity within 6 to 9 months. But for larger dogs, that might come later than stated.
Now, once in adulthood, there’s a change in a dog’s bark.
It transitions from a puppy whining to a cute little monster yelping on a high pitch. That goes on…
Until one day, they let out a big and deep dog bark.
That means that their larynx (voice box) has grown. That’s what caused their bark to sound more full and louder…
That’s almost the same reason why men who hit puberty suddenly get a deep voice.
With that, their Adam’s apple might be more prominent than when they’re a puppy. Then, it’ll be easier for you to locate that area.
But, that development won’t stay forever.
When your pooch gets old, their voice will get weaker. It’s as if their voice would be muffled.
That occurrence is a natural phenomenon brought on by old age…
However, it’s best to have them checked by a veterinarian when that happens.
Note: This is also applicable for canines of all ages. That’s because a dog losing their voice isn’t a normal event for young dogs.
It can mean that your pooch might be enduring a medical condition. Namely…
Laryngeal paralysis in dogs
When a dog loses their voice, it can indicate laryngeal paralysis.
It’s when their voice box becomes unstable. That’s due to the loss of maintenance on their laryngeal muscles.
When that happens, the muscles become weak. In some cases, even paralyzed.
Vets say that most cases of this condition are idiopathic, which means that its cause is unknown.
Other causes of laryngeal paralysis in dogs are:
- Trauma in their throat.
- In some cases, it’s congenital, meaning it’s inborn.
- Hormonal diseases like hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease.
But, there’s a study that clarifies things with an idiopathic case.
It says that dogs with this condition initially have a neuromuscular disease. Those are medical issues that affect the muscles.
That then becomes the first sign of laryngeal paralysis in dogs.
And as we’re on the topic of that, here are the signs of this condition:
- Noisy breathing.
- Hesitating to exercise.
- Sudden panting without physical exertion.
- Coughing, especially after an exercise session.
And as I mentioned previously, this condition is more common in older dogs. Moreover, middle-aged dogs are no exception too.
Do female dogs have Adam’s apples?
Female dogs can have Adam’s apples, too. The visibility of Adam’s apple in dogs is independent of gender. That’s a known fact despite the few studies available that focus on that matter.
But as I said before, the term Adam’s apple only refers to the bump in the neck. It’s more obvious if the thyroid cartilage is larger.
Then, the size of that cartilage can differ from dog to dog.
With that, you might sometimes notice that a female dog’s larynx is larger than a male dog. If that happens, don’t be weirded out…
The size of Adam’s apple manifests randomly on dogs.
Do boy dogs have Adam’s apples?
Boy dogs have Adam’s apples. All dogs can have it, independent of their gender. That’s because Adam’s apple is only a term for the bulge in one’s throat.
The part identifiable as Adam’s apple is laryngeal prominence.
That’s a part of a structure called the thyroid cartilage. Then, that cartilage is 1 of 9 cartilages in the laryngeal skeleton structure.
The Adam’s apple is the largest cartilage present in that skeleton structure.
One of its notable functions is to protect the larynx. That’s more commonly known as the vocal cords or voice box.
Moreover, it allows air to pass through. That’s why it’s a critical body part for breathing and taking in food.
And since breathing is a crucial part of one’s life, Adam’s apple is an equally important component in one’s body.
With that, it makes sense that all dogs have it. And that’s regardless of whether they’re male or female.
Their age and breed aren’t a factor in their Adam’s apple’s appearance, either.
Do dogs have a lump in their throat?
Dogs have a lump in their throat, and it’s Adam’s apples. You can carefully assess that area to feel for other bumps. If there are other lumps present, then that could be concerning.
To locate your dog’s Adam’s apple, you can use your thumb and forefinger. Start under their chin and stay in the middle.
You’ll come across a large and firm structure. That’s their Adam’s apple.
And now, as your pooch permits this interaction, make the most of it.
You’ll now cover the whole area and inspect it.
Moreover, this time, you’ll use your forefinger and long finger.
Feel around their jaw area and around their neck.
Remember: Do so in a gentle manner. That’s because your canine’s neck might be hiding lumps.
You don’t know yet if pressing directly to it can be painful or not. So, don’t take any chances.
Moreover, if you detect any lumps, then that’s not a good sign at all.
Lymph nodes are located in your dog’s neck. If those are swollen, that indicates that your dog’s body is fighting a condition.
What exactly are they fighting? There are many to consider…
Swollen lymph nodes
Those little bean-shaped cells inside your dog’s body are called lymph nodes.
They’re part of the lymphatic system, then part of the immune system.
As I said, you can feel your dog’s neck and jaw to detect any swollen lymph nodes.
However, that’s not the only area these nodes are present. You can also check your dog’s:
- Rear legs.
According to PetMD, swelling in these nodes occur when the immune system is activated.
That’s what I meant by their body indicating some fight internally.
Only a disease can trigger your dog’s immune system to react this way.
So, what could they be facing?
Here’s a general list from vets:
- Fungal infection.
- Juvenile cellulitis.
- Bacterial infection.
- Tick-borne diseases. An example is Lyme disease.
The treatment to expect depends on the exact cause of the swelling.
Here are some to expect:
The most tell-tale sign of thyroid tumors are lumps in the neck region.
This can be independent of the swollen lymph nodes I talked about.
That’s because this time, the lumps may feel larger and more firm.
If this is the case, your pup might have tumors in their thyroid gland.
Then, it can either be benign or malignant.
What’s the difference between the two?
|Type of Tumor||Description|
|Benign (adenoma)||As this gets larger, it increases hormone production.|
|Malignant (carcinoma)||This type of growth can spread to other parts of your dog’s body.|
Moreover, this is a dangerous condition.
Vets say that the mass can push through your dog’s windpipe. With that, they’ll experience difficulty in breathing.
It can also press on their esophagus. Then, Fido will have a hard time swallowing food.
Here are other signs of thyroid tumor in your dog:
- Weight loss.
- Excessive thirst.
- Urinating more frequently.
- Abnormalities in their hair coat.
- Change in their appetite, either increased or decreased.
If you feel any lumps on your dog’s throat area and see those signs, take them to the vet immediately.
Cancer (lymphosarcoma or lymphoma)
Lymphosarcoma is the third most diagnosed cancer in dogs. That’s what experts say.
To be exact, it makes up about 20% of newly diagnosed cancers in dogs.
It’s also often referred to as lymphoma.
In this type of cancer, lymphocytes are affected. Those are a type of blood cells.
This condition also hits lymphoid tissues.
Those tissues are present in many parts of the body. Namely:
- Lymph nodes.
- Bone marrow.
- Gastrointestinal (GI) tract.
That’s why when your pooch has this condition, their body is highly affected as a whole.
Dogs from ages 6 to 9 are commonly affected by this.
According to VCA Hospitals, some dog breeds are predisposed to this condition. Those are:
- Saint Bernards.
- Basset Hounds.
- Scottish Terriers.
- Airedale Terriers.
- Golden Retrievers.
Signs of lymphoma in dogs are:
- Weight loss.
- Swollen lymph nodes.