Digigrade feet on bipedal animals? by Cursico

You know... there's this little thing that bugs me about furries. If you have read the journal title then you already know what it is.

Have you ever seen a dog walking around on it's hind legs? Even with support from an object or person, wouldn't you agree that it just looks awkward? All mis-balanced and with a centre of gravity going all over the place.

That is what I think when I see digigrade art and even fursuits. It is simply unfeasible for an animal who only has two legs for walking to balance on a leg with three major joints hanging free in the air. I see people orient the legs in such a way that the calves are horizontal to the ground! Do you have any idea how much that would hurt? What about the constant strain on the tendons and muscles in trying to hold such an ungainly position?

I know... I know, it seems hypocritical to look at a six foot talking fox and then complain because the legs are unrealistic... but at least everything else is vaguely possible through evolution, but evolution can't beat gravity.

When I try to imagine bipedal digigradal creatures moving... it just turns into an absolute mess and ruins the magic for me.

So, what are your opinions on this?

Digigrade feet on bipedal animals?


25 March 2013 at 04:22:16 MDT

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    Hehe, i agree. I have also noticed that :'D Man that must hurt!

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      :P Since we both seem to like our quadrupeds, I am not surprised we are in the same mind on the matter.

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    For me it doesn't "break the magic" (maybe my ability to suspend disbelief is a little stronger? :D ) but does seem a little unrealistic.

    Though I have seen some digitigrade suits which (in my opinion) just wouldn't work as plantigrade suits. To each their own really.

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      HoHoHo it's magic, y'knoo-ooh-oow, never believe it's not so! xD

      Are you talking about that werewolf whose legs were actually stilts? o-o That one was pretty darn cool.

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    I can agree, in some cases. Remember, dogs can't walk on their hind legs because of hip shape, not leg shape.

    It would really be no different from standing on the balls of your feet, except the calf and thigh are shorter and the foot itself is longer. So, its feasable in theory

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      If you were to walk on just your toes- you've have a lot of difficulty balancing, because they're so much shorter. On top of that, the ligaments in a dogs leg along the back of the heel are designed to hold it in a certain position- that is forward strain that they are best at coping with. Having the weight shift from being mostly forward (of course with exceptions) to always right on top would be a lot more difficult for them.
      Now mostly when furries draw it- they do the human thigh, human calf and then little doggie toes so that style of leg doesn't show up all that frequently anyway and it's possible to imagine if evolution went differently the ligaments could be placed in such a way that it wouldn't cause such strain, but at the same time it's not something we really see in real life as it stands so when it's shown in fantasy it winds up just looking weird to me.
      Those stilt legs you can get in some fursuits are a prime example of our current anatomy being unsuitable for digigrade feet as people who use those legs often state they can only do it for an hour or two and it's very tiring to balance on and keep the foot in that position.
      But then again, you see women in insane high heels teetering about like young deer, so I guess humanity is doing it's darn best to go digigrade anyway, lol! xD