How Many Ribs Do Rabbits Have on Each Side?

how many ribs do rabbits have on each side

Often, a broken rib is not noticed by the owner and if left untreated, it can lead to severe internal damage including punctured lungs. You can test for a rabbit’s ribs being broken by gently palpating around their sides and chest.

Their ribs should feel soft and rounded with a thin layer of fat. If you can’t feel them, the rabbit is likely overweight.

True Ribs

The first seven rib pairs connect anteriorly directly to the sternum and are known as true or vertebrosternal ribs. The lower 5, 8, 9, and 10 paired ribs do not articulate with the sternum at all, instead they terminate in the abdominal musculature and are referred to as false or costal ribs.

Each rib is a flat, curved bone numbered 1-12. They are connected posteriorly to the spine and anteriorly in a cartilage called a costal cartilage which articulates with the sternum. Each rib also has a costal groove which carries blood vessels and a nerve.

The head of the rib is wedge shaped with two articular facets separated by a boney crest which articulates with the costal facet located on the body of a thoracic vertebra. This ridge is known as the rib crest or crista costae. The ribs then narrow to a neck that is a flat surface that does not have any bony prominences and which connects the head of the rib with the rib’s body (shaft). This region has a tubercle on its inferior surface which articulates with the facet located on the transverse process of a thoracic vertebra.

This articulation is called the scalene tubercle and it provides attachment for muscles of the rib cage. At the top of each rib is an angle, which forms the most posterior extent of the rib cage. The ribs then curve inward toward the thoracic inlet.

A common complication of a fractured rib is further damage to the structures in close proximity such as the lungs, spleen, or diaphragm. Therefore, it is important that rabbits are kept at a healthy weight to prevent rib fractures. A rabbit is considered to be overweight when its body weight exceeds 50% of its ideal weight. It is recommended that owners weigh their rabbits regularly so they can identify a problem before it becomes too serious. The best way to achieve a healthy weight for a rabbit is to feed it a diet of fresh vegetables and fruit and not a lot of grains.

False Ribs

The ribs are a group of seven pairs of flat bones that are connected to each other and the sternum. They protect organs in the thorax, including the heart and lungs, and help the body breathe. The ribs also provide attachment points for muscles in the back, chest, and upper arm.

The first seven ribs are called true ribs because they connect to the spine (backbone) in the back and directly attach to the sternum in front. They are slightly shorter than the next five pairs of ribs, which are false ribs. The false ribs do not connect to the sternum and attach to the costal cartilage of the ribs above them. The final two pairs of ribs do not attach to the sternum or any other rib, and are known as floating ribs.

Each rib has a head, neck, groove, tubercle, and anterior extremity. The heads of the ribs are curved and have holes in them to allow for the attachment of rib cartilage. The ribs also have a central ridge of bone called the lateral plate or costal margin, which forms the crest that runs down the center of the rib cage.

The sternum is a large bone located in the center of the chest. The sternum is connected to the ribs and vertebrae in the back and houses many important organs, such as the heart and lungs. The sternum is also home to blood vessels and nerves that carry oxygen-rich blood throughout the body and relay messages from the brain.

Rabbits are unique among mammals in having six pairs of true ribs and three pairs of false ribs, along with a pair of floating ribs. The ribs are flexible, allowing the rabbit to move easily through narrow spaces. The ribs are also essential for breathing, as they support the muscles that help a rabbit inhale and exhale.

While a rabbit’s ribs are strong, they are not indestructible. They can be broken in several ways, such as if the rabbit gets hit by a car or falls from a height. If a rabbit’s ribs are broken, the owner should take them to a veterinarian immediately. A rib break can be fatal if not treated properly.

Floating Ribs

Rabbits are known for being strong and quick, but this does not mean that their bones are indestructible. In fact, they can suffer from a number of injuries, including broken ribs. This can be caused by a variety of factors, including trauma and bone cancer. If your rabbit has a broken rib, it is important to seek veterinary care immediately to ensure that the injury does not become worse.

The rib cage is an essential part of a rabbit’s anatomy and serves many functions. It protects the heart and lungs from predators, traps body heat to keep the rabbit warm, and allows them to breathe easily. It also provides attachments for muscles that are used to move the front legs.

A rabbit’s rib cage is made up of 13 pairs of ribs. The first six pairs of ribs are called true ribs, while the last two pair are known as floating ribs. Each true rib has a small head with two articular surfaces-one that articulates with the body of the vertebrae and another that articulates with the tip of the transverse process. The rib also has a shaft that extends posteriorly. The inferior (bottom) portion of the rib is curved and has a sharper inferior border than the superior border. The superior and inferior borders of the rib are lined with cartilage called costal cartilage.

In addition to providing support and protection, the rib cage also helps to transmit sound vibrations to the inner ear, which allow rabbits to hear low-frequency sounds. The rib cage also contains a layer of cartilage called ribbing or coastal cartilage, which strengthens the ribs and prevents them from breaking or dislocating.

The sternum, or breastbone, is a long, flat bone that runs the length of the rabbit’s chest. The sternum is an important part of the rib cage because it provides attachments for muscles that control posture. In addition, the sternum houses blood vessels and nerves that carry oxygen-rich blood to and from the heart. It also helps to protect the lungs and other internal organs.


Whether you were fascinated by anatomy as a kid or the idea of dissecting a rabbit makes you a little bit squeamish, there’s no denying that rabbits have interesting bodies. From their long ears to their twitching noses, they’re a delight to watch and admire. But how exactly do rabbits move so quickly and with such grace? Let’s take a look at some of the key bones that make up their unique body frame.

The ribcage is a vital part of the rabbit’s chest, protecting important internal organs like the heart and lungs. The sternum is especially important, as it helps to anchor muscles that are responsible for moving the front legs. It also houses a number of blood vessels and nerves that relay messages from the brain to the rest of the body.

In addition to its important functions, the ribcage is also home to a pair of costal cartilages. These flexible, tough pieces help to absorb the shock of a blow or a sudden movement. They also play a role in regulating breathing by keeping the lungs from collapsing when exhaling.

Another interesting feature of the ribcage is its pectoral girdle. This is a bony structure that connects the forelimbs to the rest of the body. It’s also where the muscles that are responsible for moving the forelimbs originate.

Rabbits are particularly susceptible to broken ribs, especially in the event of a fall or direct trauma. A fractured rib can cause serious complications, including punctured or perforated lungs and intestines. If you suspect your rabbit may have a broken rib, seek veterinary care immediately. Injuries to the ribs are often painful for the rabbit, making them difficult to diagnose. If left untreated, a broken rib can be fatal to the animal. Fortunately, with prompt treatment, most rib injuries are treatable. The earliest sign of a problem is a slowdown in breathing. Then, the rabbit may start to wheeze or cough. If the ribs are displaced, the rabbit will also have trouble swallowing. To reduce the risk of fractures, it’s important for rabbits to consume a diet rich in calcium. This should include vegetables such as broccoli, kale and okra, as well as leafy greens like parsley and alfalfa.

Related Posts