When you’re petting your cat, and it rolls over so you can rub its stomach, you might find yourself wondering if the cat has a belly button.
The answer to that question is yes; cats do have belly buttons. Like us, they have one belly button that connects to their placenta via the umbilical cord. Unlike us, however, the cat’s belly button isn’t as prominent and is a little bit harder to find. In fact, your cat doesn’t have an innie or an outie like humans do. In this article, we’ll answer all the questions about cats and belly buttons that you might have.
Are Cats’ Belly Buttons Similar to Ours?
Like us, a cat has one belly button. Other mammals, such as sheep, horses, and dogs, also have one single belly button. In fact, all mammals have a belly button, though, much like cats, it is difficult to observe the belly button in animals that are covered with fur. The fur naturally present on their stomachs conceals their belly button.
Unlike us, the cat’s belly button doesn’t collect lint because it doesn’t have the depression in it that ours does. A cat’s belly button is flat; it’s a small scar rather than a shallow hole.
The belly button of your cat serves as an important landmark for veterinary surgeons, as it is found along their midline, also known as the linea alba. This is a popular incision site for surgical purposes.
Where Is a Cat’s Belly Button?
Not only is the feline’s belly button hard to find, but it doesn’t look like a belly button. If you feel around long enough, you can usually feel the raised scar, but it’s possible that the cat’s belly button has completely healed, and there might not be a scar or bump at all.
Can There Be Health Concerns With a Cat’s Belly Button?
If the kitten or cat has what looks like an outie belly button, which cats don’t usually have, it could be a sign of an umbilical hernia and must be treated right away. In kittens, this occurs when the umbilical cord doesn’t completely seal after birth. Under normal circumstances, mother cats instinctively bite off the umbilical cord, leaving behind an umbilical stump, which dries and falls off within the first week of life.
In circumstances where it doesn’t completely seal, an umbilical hernia can occur. At other times, kittens may also get infected via the same open umbilical cord, leading to an umbilical stump that appears red, inflamed, and very protruded. Medical attention is required for both scenarios.
Adult cats may also develop an umbilical hernia at times, though the underlying cause is different than in kittens. They too require veterinary care if this occurs.
While your cat has a belly button, just as you do, that’s where the similarities end. During your next petting session, you can feel around for your cat’s belly button, but remember it’s usually just a tiny scar or bump, not a recessed belly button.
If your kitten or adult cat has a belly button that looks like an outie, they could have an umbilical hernia, and you must get the feline to a vet immediately so that you can discuss the correct treatment to help your kitten be healthy and happy once again.
Featured Image Credit: DebraCarr, Shutterstock