What does low mean here?

It is also known as the common shoulder muscle, particularly in lower animals (e.g., in domestic cats). Deltoid is also further shortened in slang as "delt". The plural forms of all three incarnations are deltoidei, deltoids and delts.

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oxford dictionaries says "animals of relatively simple or primitive characteristics as contrasted with humans or with more advanced animals such as mammals or vertebrates".

They are "lower" in terms of their "biological complexity", e.g. apes are higher animals, worms are lower animals

also: lower animals have a very simple nervous system higher animals have developed eyes, a more complex brain and so on

  • Note that cats are not noticeably simpler in any developmental or biological sense than humans, so the only part of this answer which is relevant is "contrasted with humans".
    – Colin Fine
    Commented Sep 16, 2012 at 12:09

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