(Of a mammal) walking on its toes and not touching the ground with its heels, as a dog, cat, or rodent. Compare with plantigrade.
- Because of their digitigrade stance, walking down stairs was difficult for them to do rapidly.
- Bear in mind that this rule applies even in the case of extreme digitigrade organisms in which a ‘ventral’ or ‘plantar’ view of the ankle in a natural life position requires one to look down on the tarsals and see the top side of the foot.
- Thus, by the early Late Triassic sauropods had relatively small forefeet that were held in a nearly vertical, digitigrade posture in which the five weight-bearing digits were arranged in a gentle arch.
Mid 19th century: from Latin digitus 'finger, toe' + -gradus '-walking'.
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