The Occiput

The “bump” at the back of our dogs’ skull is called the occiput, and it’s prominent in some breeds more than others. Because it can be especially evident in most scent hounds, it was an “Old Wive’s Tale” that the protuberance was a measure of the strength of a dog’s sense of smell. Across the board, there are different slang terms for this including “smart bump,” “love knot,” and “dumb bump.” Ouch.

Technically, the occipital bone goes down the back of the dog’s head and articulates with the neck. We defer to massage therapy experts on this, but some sources say the occiput contains nerve endings and stimulates calming effects dealing with flight or fight – for this reason, it’s used in canine therapeutic massage to calm the dogs.

3 thoughts on “The Occiput”

  1. Never heard this one! We can always count on NPDD to come up with cool stuff!

    • Awwww, thanks, Sharyn! We live and learn too, and just loved this one!! (who knew?)

  2. Pingback: What's Normal?

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