Here is a list of organs used in the lesson and
their functions. For a printable version, click HERE and then use your browser's
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- diaphragm - The muscle which expands
and contracts in order to allow the cat to breathe.
- gallbladder - The gallbladder stores
bile until it is needed by the small intestine in order to digest
fats. The gallbladder is not essential to the process of digestion.
It is possible for bile to be delivered directly from the liver to
the small intestine. Bile digests and absorbs fat and helps to
dispose of waste from the cat's body.
- liver - The liver produces many enzymes
in order to digest food. It manufactures bile, which is then stored
in the gall bladder. Bile contains acids as well as cholesterol.
The liver also stores and releases a compound called glycogen,
which is a carbohydrate that can be changed into sugar should the
sugar level of the cat fall.
- pancreas - The pancreas secretes two
compounds. The first compound is a digestive enzyme that helps
break down fats and proteins. The second compound is insulin, which
regulates the sugar level in the cat's body.
- peritoneum - The peritoneum is the thin
membrane that covers the abdominal digestive organs of the
- small intestine - The small intestine
carries out the final stages in digestion. It is lined with small
hairs and blood vessels inside the intestine carry away nutrients
to other parts of the cat's body. The small intestine has three
sections: the duodenum, the jejunum, and the ileum. The duodenum is
the section where the process of absorption begins. The jejunum is
the largest portion of the small intestine and it is here where
most of the absorption takes place. The ileum is the final section
of the intestine and it is where the absorption process
- spleen - The spleen produces red blood
cells and regulates the supply of red blood cells. It also
functions as a storage area for blood.
- stomach - The stomach stores food while
it goes through the initial phases of digestion.
- uterine horn -.The uterine horn is a
coiled tube that leads from the ostium to the uterus.
- kidney - The kidneys filter waste and
excess sodium from the cat's body.
- ovary - The ovaries in a female cat
store eggs which are released into the fallopian tubes for delivery
into the uterus.
- urinary bladder - The urinary bladder
collects urine for removal from the body. It can expand to
accommodate large amounts of urine.
- urethra - In both sexes, the urethra is
a tube attached to the urinary bladder. The urethra is the organ
that transports urine from the bladder to the external
- uterus - The uterus is the organ in
which fetuses form and develop. The uterus receives eggs from the
ovaries and contains the egg until it is reached by the
- - The serves as the passageway by which babies
are delivered. The is a muscular passageway that is also an
important part of conception. During conception, the male cat
inserts his penis into the and releases sperm, which fertilizes the
egg and produces a fetus.
- pharynx - The
pharynx, also called the throat, is the place where air enters the
respiratory system after entering the nose or mouth.
- lungs - The lungs provide oxygen to the
blood and remove carbon dioxide from the blood. The lungs are
positioned on top of the diaphragm so that the diaphragm can
control the breathing of the cat by expanding and
- bronchial tubes - The bronchial tubes are a pair of tubes that connect the
trachea to the two lungs. The bronchial tubes branch out at the
lungs into smaller tubes called bronchi and then into much smaller
tubes called bronchioles, which contain small air sacs that
function as the exchange points for the two gases oxygen and carbon
- trachea - The
trachea is the tube that transports oxygen into the bronchial tubes
for delivery into the lungs. The trachea is also referred to as the