Dog Skeletal Recording Diagram

One of my jobs for this week is to catalogue some new dog skeletons that we’ve acquired for our zooarchaeology reference collection. The dogs are archaeological, all buried in the ‘modern’ period around the ruins of Haverfordwest Priory in West Wales. They were donated by Cadw to the University of Exeter to use for academic purposes after I did the analysis of the faunal assemblage. The level of preservation is really good, but that doesn’t stop the odd three-tibia individual popping up occasionally, so I wanted to catalogue the burials properly so people could see at a glance which bones were present.

The product of lots of photoshop rearranging of bone drawings from Hillson 1999 and Barone 1976

I trawled the internet for a suitable diagram to colour in but they just don’t exist in the detail that I wanted! So instead I made one myself, using mostly images from Hillson (1999) Mammal Bones and Teeth and some (the pelvis, cranium and mandible) from Barone (1976) Comparative Anatomy. The diagram shows lefts then rights of the key elements that can be coloured in or hashed depending on presence/fragmentation of different elements. The phalanges and vertebral column are represented by one of each type (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd phalanges and cervical, thoracic, lumbar and caudal vertebrae) with a space to note how many are represented. Some elements (the hyoid, sternum, baculum, carpals and tarsals) are not shown as I couldn’t get nice enough drawings.

Feel free to use this image but reference the two comparative anatomy textbooks that I used below – and keep an eye out for a blog post on the dogs of Haverfordwest in the near future!!

Barone, R. (1976). Anatomie compare des mammifères domestiques. Osteologie. (2nd Edition). I (1), Paris: Vigot.

Hillson, S. (1999). Mammal bones and teeth: an introductory guide to methods of identification. Dorchester: Dorset Press.


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