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Do you know that the clitoris is not an anatomical privilege of Homo sapiens?

La Vache qui clit

​     Homo sapiens is not the only species to have a clitoris and to be able to feel pleasure. It is an organ common to almost all female mammals (cow, mouse, whale, etc.) and to some non-mammalian animal species (eg ostrich, snake). The anatomy of the clitoris is substantially the same from one species to another but its size, number, position and function may vary.

Regarding its size, current scientific data are still incomplete, but we can say with certainty that it varies from one individual to another, and from one species to another, whether we are talking about overall size or elements that compose it ("head", "arms", "legs"). In Homo sapiens, we have seen that scientific data places its overall length between 7 and 13 cm .

In the animal kingdom, the longest clitoris is that of the female elephant (about 40 cm). But, if we stick to the ratio in relation to the size of the animal, then it comes down to the spotted hyena (about 20 cm), whose glans ("head") is very prominent, and makes it difficult to distinguish the females of males. Prior to this discovery, scientists mistakenly believed that spotted hyenas were hermaphrodites.

Regarding the number of clitoris, most species have only one, but there are exceptions. This is the case of the female snake who has two! (like males, who have two penises).

From one species to another the position of the clitoris can also be different. To illustrate this idea, we can talk about the difference between Homo sapiens and dolphins. In Homo sapiens, the clitoris is positioned astride the urethra (duct that allows peeing), thus moving its "head" away from the entrance to the vagina (the urethra passes between the two). In female dolphins, it's a little different: the clitoris is positioned so that its "head" is directly stimulated by penetration. The lucky ones!

Finally, we come to the function of the clitoris. In Homo sapiens and the majority of other species, we know that it performs a single function: pleasure. In many species, we thus observe sexual practices comparable to our own (eg masturbation).

In some species, however, the clitoris performs other functions: the passage of urine (like the penis which is also used to urinate) or the possibility of repelling males. This is particularly the case of the female fossa (a kind of small puma), whose clitoris can temporarily take on thorns.

The spotted hyena is the only known species to date to escape the pleasure ≠ reproduction rule. Her clitoris is multifunctional. Being very elastic, it fulfills three functions: it allows him to pee; it can curve like a sock and act as a vagina to promote mating with males; and in doing so, he allows her to give birth!!!

All this knowledge is meant to evolve and be supplemented. As with Homo sapiens, the genitals of female animals are still understudied. Let's just keep in mind that the adaptation strategies of species have created great diversity and that this diversity remains, including between members of the same species.

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