The wolf anatomy differs on several points from the dog. Most obvious is a pre-caudal gland on the over side of the tail, close to the base, that is not present on dogs. The wolf usually has golden-yellow eyes, longer legs, larger paws and more pronounced jaws. The body of the wolf is built for long distance running, with a rather thin chest and powerful back and leg muscles. Wolves can move over great distances and the wide paws make sure deep snow hampers them less than their prey.














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A wolf often seems more massive than a dog of comparable weight due to the extra bulk of the coat. The coat is built up of two layers, with hard guard hairs to repel water and dirt and a thick woolly undercoat to keep it warm. The wolf changes coat two times a year, during spring and autumn. Females tend to have a thicker winter coat and keep it further into the spring than males. The wolves and most larger dogs share the same tooth configuration: The upper jaw has 6 incisors, 2 canines, 8 premolars, and 4 molars. The bottom jaw has 6 incisors, 2 canines, 8 premolars, and 6 molars. The canines are by far most important, as they are used to catch and hold prey. One common reason for wolves to starve is tooth damage after being kicked by larger prey. Wolves live 6–9 years average in the wild, although in captivity on average they live 16 years. See mortality for more information.













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