Top 10 major differences between cheetahs & leopards


– Leopards have rosette-shaped spots. Cheetahs have solid round, or oval, spots.

– Leopards have no “tear” line. Cheetahs have a black “tear” line running from the inside of the eye to the mouth.

– Leopards are bulkier and stronger. Cheetahs are lighter, but taller, than leopards.

– Leopards have a familiar “cat” shape. Cheetahs are lankier than the “cat” shape.

– Leopards hunt at night. Cheetahs hunt during the day.

– Leopards like to drag prey up trees. Cheetahs prefer grassy plains.

– Leopards rely on stealth. Cheetahs rely on speed (up to 113 km/hr) over short distances. They are the world’s fastest animal.

– Leopards have strong teeth and jaws and can crunch through thick bones.

– Cheetahs have smaller teeth and jaws, leaving a larger nasal cavity for rapid breathing. They cannot crunch large bones.

– Leopards live a solitary life while cheetahs are more social (mother and cubs; males sometimes form coalitions, yet they never mix with females; except during reproduction).

– Leopards climb trees for they have retractile claws while cheetahs don’t.

– The cheetah can run at a speed of 113 km/hr while leopards do 60 km/hr.

– The two black lines below the cheetah’s eyes are known as tear marks, and act as reflection absorbers while they are hunting during sunny days.

Check out even more major differences in Part Two.

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18 Responses to Top 10 major differences between cheetahs & leopards

  1. Thembekile Sithole September 23, 2017 at 4:15 pm #

    Thanks about such information.

  2. G81 2PT July 29, 2016 at 9:06 pm #

    Can cheetahs take prey up trees ?

    • Michael Theys July 28, 2017 at 10:15 am #

      They usually don’t, though leopards will so they can eat without being bothered by other predators (especially hyenas).

  3. Niyaish December 29, 2015 at 9:58 am #

    Really descriptive and nice

  4. tobbie shuuya June 23, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

    thanks for your good article,now my confusion is cleared,very informative,thanks

  5. rico June 22, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

    nice article man 😉

  6. Aiden Cherniske May 4, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

    Good comparisons

  7. Surojit Bhattacharjee March 30, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

    Now my confusion is cleared !! Informative article…Thanks!!

  8. sujith February 3, 2013 at 9:57 am #

    Very informative. Thanks!

  9. FATEMEH January 17, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

    It was so good and I brought it for my teacher. thanks for your good article . My name is Fatemeh Kababi from Islamic Republic of Iran. THANKS

  10. Dolvin Paul June 19, 2012 at 10:16 am #

    I know only one difference , now i know nine other.
    thanks to Michael.

  11. Sadie May 20, 2012 at 4:14 am #

    I did my nails today. Thought it was cheetah print. Showed my cousin. She made me read this. Now she can’t correct me anymore. Thanks!! Haha it was leopard print!

  12. yeow January 18, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

    good for more imformation

  13. rich October 15, 2010 at 10:03 am #

    nice article Michael, very informative and I am sure helpful to a lot of people who want to understand the differences. Thank You.

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