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Difference between Leopard and Cheetah


At a glance one could easily mistake a leopard for a cheetah, but if you take a closer look at them you'll see they are actually quite different.
Here are some of the main physical differences between the two animals:


A very large, muscular predator, weighing 100kg and even more.
The leopard is a far more powerful animal compared to the cheetah.
The spots of the leopard are rosette in shape, covering the whole body as well as the face.
They have white eye-linings at the bottom of the eyes. The white colour assists its vision at night by amplifying light which is reflected off objects around it, into the eyes.
Just like a "true cat," all of its claws are fully retractable.


They have a tall and slender build (very aerodynamic).
The head of a cheetah is quite small in relation to its body, when compared to leopard, making the cheetah more stream-lined.
Their nostrils are large in size to allow maximum oxygen in-take for their muscles, while running at high speeds.
Cheetah's tails are quite flat towards the end, acting as a rudder to balance it while running.
Instead of having rosette shaped spots, they have single large spots (like thumb prints), covering the whole body. The front of face has very few spots and is more a light brown colour.
Cheetah's have black "tear lines" which run from the eyes down to the sides of the mouth. They hunt mostly during the day, so the black "tear lines" help absorb light, to prevent a blinding effect from the bright sunlight.
The cheetah can only retract its dew claw. The dew claw is hooked onto an animal that it's hunting to try pull it down. The rest of the claws are non-retractable, just like dogs, giving the Cheetah better grip on the ground while running.


Sree said...

Nice article, I would like to know which runs faster between Leopard and Cheetah.

Anonymous said...

This is a good handy site to go on cause I was whatching animal planet and I'm 11 years old and I had a question how do you tell the differnce between a cheetah and a lepard

blitzthor said...

Just watched PBS's NATURE on the Leopard, and was not sure i knew the difference between a Cheeta and a Leopard. Thanks for making the comparison so concise and clear!

Amanda Hamm said...

Cheetahs are the fastest land animal.

Anonymous said...

Cheetah is the fastest animal on earth