7 Clear Signs That Red Pandas Are Mammals (Explained!)

In this article, you will learn more about why red pandas are considered mammals.

From their natural appearance, it is quite evident that red pandas are mammals. Below are some of these main characteristics:

  1. Fur and hair
  2. Mammary glands
  3. They are warm-blooded 
  4. One-time tooth replacement
  5. Single-boned lower jaw
  6. Three bones in the middle ear
  7. Heart with four chambers
  8. Diaphragm

Fur and Hair

Red pandas are among the animals that have fur and hair all around their bodies. 

Once these pandas are born, they usually do not have any hair on them. But eventually, their hair grows once they begin getting older. 

a clear view of the red panda's hair

Apparently,  the hair covering this red panda’s body is relatively easy to see as they mature.

Mammary Glands

Most mammals always nurse their young with milk. The milk becomes available thanks to the presence of mammary glands. Red pandas also feed their young ones milk, proving they have mammary glands.

The presence of these mammary glands in red pandas proves that these are mammals.

They are Warm-Blooded

The warm-blooded metabolism only exists in mammals. This type of metabolism is also known as endothermic metabolism.

You may easily determine whether an animal is warm-blooded due to how they move. For example, red pandas can move at a very high speed. The warm-blooded metabolism aids in the quick movement of mammals.

Cold-blooded animals like reptiles cannot move fast. The reason for slow movement is the lack of warm-blooded metabolism.

Red pandas have a warm-blooded metabolism. Due to this metabolic process, red pandas can run faster. The metabolic factor and the speed directly categorize red pandas under mammals.

One-Time Tooth Replacement

Replacement of the teeth only once in a lifetime is common in humans. You must have once lost your teeth then they got replaced after.

The removal of these teeth is called diphyodont. In other words, diphyodont is the most common characteristic of all mammals.

Red pandas usually replace their teeth only once in their lifetime just like humans. This transition of teeth from temporary to permanent in red pandas makes them mammals.

When it comes to mammals and teeth, it is relatively easy to make an identification. Most other animals, like sharks, usually replace their teeth several times.

Therefore, it is quite easy to spot a mammal such as a red panda. The replacement in these mammals is only once.

Single Boned Lower Jaw

One of the most common features of all mammals is the bone making the lower jaw. All mammals have a jaw with a single bone.

Red pandas are mammals due to the single bone of their lower jaw. This lower bone is also the dentary.

All mammals use the dentary to hold the lower teeth. Other mammals have bones on the lower jaw section.

Lower jaw bone of a mammal

The red panda only has one bone that does not attach directly to the skull. Despite having only one bone that isn’t attached to the skull, red pandas are not less of mammals.

Three Bones in the Middle Ear

The presence of three bones in the middle section is another common feature of all mammals. Red pandas are mammals due to the presence of these three ears.

The three special ears of all mammals are the malleus, the stapes, and the incus.

The red pandas and all the other mammals have three bones for special reasons. These three bones help in transmitting sound to the red pandas. The three middle ear bones in mammals initially originated from the lower jaw bone.

The evolution process in mammals was why the three middle ear bones came. The previous mammal-like reptiles didn’t have the three middle ear bones. 

To this date, red pandas and all other mammals have three middle ear bones.

Heart With Four Chambers

Four chambers in all mammals’ hearts are among the main distinctive features. Red pandas have hearts with four chambers.

The chambers amounting to four in red pandas’ hearts make them mammals.

Some other animals, such as birds, also have four chambers. However, birds have other features that exclude them from the mammal category. 

Therefore, you cannot confuse the red pandas with other animals with four heart chambers, such as birds.


When it comes to breathing, all mammals use the diaphragm well. Red pandas usually use the diaphragm to control their breathing motion.

The diaphragm breathing mechanism works the same way in all other mammals. Since the red pandas have this diaphragm, they are also under mammals.

Birds and other reptiles also have diaphragms. However, the diaphragm in a bird is not as strong as the one in mammals such as red pandas.

Final Thoughts

Red pandas prove to be mammals due to several features around their bodies. The presence of fur on the skin and the availability of four heart chambers show that red pandas are indeed mammals.

There are also many other features that red pandas have, making them mammals. You may also check out the 7 unusual ways how red pandas communicate.