The Legs and Feet of Furniture are One of The Best-Identifying Factors for Furniture Styles.
The earliest feet were either plain (being an extension of the style) or were large "balls". Later, the growth of the styles of feet used on furniture was based on the imitation of the feet of quadrupeds, birds and even "dragons". Caveat: the fact that an item of furniture has one of the styles of foot/leg shown below does not indicate it is from that period as these styles have seen frequent revivals over the centuries and often times these revival pieces were of mixed styles. They are merely an indication of the style of furniture, not its' age.
Images from Wallace Nuttings Furniture Treasury Vols I & II; to learn more about furniture styles I suggest this book.
Early Foot Styles - Ball or Bun - 17th C.
Examples Below are of Early (17th c) "Ball" Feet; Sometimes Referred to as "Bun" Feet
"Ball & Claw" Foot 18th C.
( Also Called Chippendale )*
Usually associated with Chippendale furniture. Although used by Thomas Chippendale, this style of the foot was not his design, as it was fully developed prior to Chippendale beginning his work. The bottom row shows the typical "ball and claw" form used on the chest. Many variants, see below:
Queen Ann - 18th C.
Frequently referred to as a "pad" and/or "Dutch" foot; popular from about 1710 through the Chippendale period; many variants
Variants of The Ball & Claw
First row: The feet showed below, also of the 18th c., are sometimes referred to as a "dog foot" or "hairy paw" foot. There are many variations of this style including with and without "balls" and sometimes resting directly on the floor.
Second row: These variants are usually referred to as "hoof" foot; sometimes found with realistic "hair" covering the hoof. Some may be found "cloven" while others more resemble a horse's hoof. As this type of foot was never really popular, it is therefore rather rare.