Difference between Cheetah, Leopard and Jaguar


Cheetahs are the only cats found within the snus. They have a unique physical structure and are considered to be the “fastest land animals.” Usually, the cheetah can be found in African or Asian savannas or grasslands. There is now more information available about cheetahs.

“Cheetah is the only big cat that can’t roar.”

Physical Identification-

1) Spots are in the shape of thumbprints – imagine dipping your thumb in ink and dabbing it over the animal.

2) Easily recognized by two long black “tear tracks” descending the nose on either side.

Behavioral Identification-

1) Hunts for small prey in grasslands.

2) Hunts only during daylight hours.

3) Extremely skittish of other animals.

4) Become familiar with humans much more quickly.

5)Younger cats may be seen in small groups.

Prey Style- 

1)Chases after hiding in the grass.

2) Prefers to run down its prey and bite at the throat of its prey to kill.

3) Does not want to fight; abandons a kill as soon as a larger predator appears.



There are few cats whose distribution stretches over nearly three continents as widely as the leopard. Grasslands, jungles, and human settlements are all home to these skilled hunters.

 Physical Identification-

1) The spots are rosette-shaped — imagine bunching your fingers together and dipping them in ink, then stamping them on the creature.

2) The tail is either as spotted as the rest of the body or light tipped.

Behavioral Identification-

1) The woody grasslands and woodlands where it hunts small and medium/large prey can sometimes be dense with forest.

2) Take part in nighttime hunting.

3) Plants trees as a source of territorial defense.

4) Quite elusive and does not become accustomed to humans quickly.

5) Excellent camouflage; they are the “shadow cat”; if you are 10 ft away, you can’t recognize them.

6) They spend most of their time alone, only the mother and cubs pass time together.

Prey style-

1)Stalkers and ambushers are preferred.

2) An attack on the throat kills quickly.

3) Does not like to get into fights with larger predators, however, does not like to abandon its kill, so it usually retreats with the meal.


A jaguar is the largest cat in the Americas; it is a renowned, stealthy hunter that prefers forests for hunting medium or large prey.

Physical Identification-

1)There are spots that look like dirty rosettes — imagine bunching your fingers up together and dipping them in ink, then stamping them all over the animal. Use your pinky finger to add a few more spots in the middle.

2) The tip of the tail is generally darker than the rest of the tail.

Behavioral Identification-

1)In forests, it hunts small and medium-sized prey.

2) Take part in nighttime hunting.

3)Supports ambushing and territorial defense with trees.

4) It does not get used to humans easily.

5)They have excellent camouflage; they are the “shadow cat” of the Americas. They can be 10 feet away and still remain hidden.

6) Very solitary – only the mother and cub spend much time together.

Prey Style-

1)Prefers following and ambushing from behind.

2) Attacks with a bite to the back of the neck and breaks the neck.

Jaguar often get high by eating Hallucinogenic roots, which is also increases their sense for hunting “