The size of small Indian civet is smaller than that of other species of civets or palm civets. Its body hair is lightr brown in color. It has 5 black vertical marking lines on its back. Such vertical marking lines are from its neck to its tail base. It the side of its body, there are black spots scattered along the body length. Its tail has 6-9 black and white color banded ring. The tip of its tail is purely white color in color. There is no mane or pointed up hair at its neck or black unlike large civet. Its forehead is narrow like that of pig. Its leg is quite short.
It is found in India, Sri lanka, Southern China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Indonisia.
It eats small animals such as chicken, birds, rats, snakes, skinks, chameleons, as well as fruits and grubs.
It lives in general dense forests. It does not climb up the trees unlike any other civets. It can run very quickly. It is a nocturnal animal like any other civets. During daytime, it resides in small shrubs or high clumps of grasses. Sometime, it is found on trees. Small Indian civet has a gland near its anus, which defecates strong-smell liquid. Naturally, it wipes this liquid at stumps or branches. Thus, it is called "small Indian civet" . Such liquid can be used to make medicines or perfume. Both male and female has such gland at it bottom. But that of female is smaller. It is sometimes called "musk civet".
It is mature and ready for mating at the age of 2 years. There is no apparent breeding season. Gestation period is around 2 months. One litter contains 2-4 young. It gives birth in soil hollow near trees or stumps. Female will raise the young while male will stay with female only in breeding season. It can live up to 10 years.
Update : 11 April 2017