Difference Between Tiger and Cheetah

Tiger vs Cheetah

Tiger and cheetah are two different feline carnivores with many different characteristics between each other. They both are top predators with camouflaging coats of fur, so that the prey species cannot see them. Despite these differences, the two species are still mixed up by those who are not familiar with these majestic creatures.


Tiger, Pantheratigris, is one of the flagship species, and they are the largest among all the felids in terms of body size. They are naturally distributed in South and Southeast Asia in dispersed forest patches with a limited number of individuals. In fact, they have been categorised as an endangered species by the IUCN since many years. There are six subspecies of tigers, and the Bengali tiger is a type of species. The Sumatran tiger, Javan tiger, Malaysian tiger, Chinese tiger, and Siberian tiger are the other subspecies. These large animals average more than 300 kilograms of weight among males. However, their females are considerably smaller than males with a recorded maximum weight close to 170 kilograms. They are golden brown in colour with characteristic dark coloured stripes. There are white colour morphs of tigers due to mutations. Additionally, the golden tabby tigers are also a genetic cause of colour variation. They are agile and heavy, providing a super powerful strike on the prey animal that enables no escape. These popular and culturally important animals for humans have been causing an interesting influence with they being the national animal of two countries.


Cheetah, Asinonyxjubatus, is a large sized feline predominantly distributed in Africa. However, they have had a former natural range that has extended up to India and Bangladesh through the Middle-East region. Cheetah is a slender-bodied tall animal with a longer tail compared to many other related felines. An adult would weigh from 35 to 72 kilograms, and the body length varies from 110 to 150 centimetres. Their average height at the shoulders could vary from 66 to 94 centimetres. They have a deep chest and a narrow waist; those collectively give them their unique appearance. It is a coarse and short golden yellow coloured coat of fur with black spots throughout the body other than on the belly. Their tail starts with small black spots but ends with large black colour rings. Cheetah has a small head and highset eyes. The black colour tear-marks start from the corner of the eyes. Those tear marks run through the sides of nose towards the mouth, which aids to keep the sunlight out of their eyes while hunting for a proper vision. The most important fact about the cheetahs is that they are the fastest land animal of the Earth, and the speed could go as high as 120 kilometres per hour. They have large nostrils to inhale more oxygen during running.


What is the difference between Tiger and Cheetah?

• Tiger is larger and heavier than cheetah.

• Tiger is found only in Asia while cheetah is currently distributed only in Africa.

• Tiger can roar but not the cheetahs could roar. Hence, tiger is regarded as a big cat, but cheetah is not a considered as a big cat.

• Cheetah can run exceptionally faster than any tiger.

• Cheetah has a slender body, which could be bent very highly while running. However, tiger does not have very slender body, but it is a robustly built that cannot bend as much as a cheetah’s body.

• Tiger has dark colour stripes on the golden yellow coat, whereas cheetah has dark colour spots on their golden yellow coat of fur.

• Cheetah has black colour tear marks on the face but not in tiger.

• The face is broader in tiger while it is slender in cheetah.