Skip to main content
Select Source:

cheetah

cheetah (chē´tə), carnivore of the cat family, Acinonyx jubatus, native to Africa and SW Asia as far east as India. Formerly numerous all over their range, they are extinct now in Asia except for small numbers in Iran's Dasht-e Kavir, and are threatened in all of their range. Very little is know about the rare and elusive Saharan cheetah.

The cheetah's method of hunting deviates from that of most cats in that it runs down its prey, rather than stalking it and pouncing upon it for the kill. This doglike method of hunting is suited to its habitat, which is open grassland. The swiftest four-footed animal alive, it can achieve bursts of speed of over 60 mi (95 km) per hr and is the only animal capable of running down black bucks and gazelles.

An average cheetah is about 21/2 ft (75 cm) tall at the shoulder and weighs about 100 lb (45 kg). It has long legs and a tawny coat with closely spaced round black spots. It is unique among cats in having nonretractile claws. Cheetahs are tamable and were used for centuries in India for hunting game; they sometimes have been called hunting leopards.

Cheetahs are classified in the phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata, class Mammalia, order Carnivora, family Felidae.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheetah

"cheetah." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheetah

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

cheetah

cheetah Spotted large cat found in hot, arid areas of Africa, the Middle East and India. A long-legged animal with blunt, non-retractable claws, the cheetah has a tawny brown coat with round black spots. Capable of running at more than 95km/h (60mph), it hunts gazelles and antelopes by sight. Length: body: 140–150cm (55–60in); tail: 75–80cm (30–32in); weight: 60kg (132lb). Family Felidae; species Acinonyx jubatus.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheetah

"cheetah." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/cheetah

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

cheetah

chee·tah / ˈchētə/ • n. a large spotted cat (Acinonyx jubatus) found in Africa and parts of Asia. It is the fastest animal on land.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah-0

"cheetah." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah-0

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

cheetah

cheetah XVIII. — Hind. cītā — Skr. citraka-, f. citrá- bright, variegated.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah-1

"cheetah." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah-1

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

cheetah

cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) See FELIDAE.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah

"cheetah." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

cheetah

cheetahcater, crater, creator, curator, data, debater, delator, dumbwaiter, equator, freighter, frustrater, gaiter, grater, gyrator, hater, later, legator, mater, negator, pater, peseta, plater, rotator, skater, slater, stater, tater, traitor, ultimata, understater, upstater, waiter •painter •taster, waster •gamester • aviator • tailgater •hesitater • shirtwaister •Akita, Anita, arboreta, beater, beta, Bhagavadgita, cheater, cheetah, Demeter, Dieter, dolce vita, eater, eta, Evita, excreta, fetor, granita, greeter, heater, Juanita, litre (US liter), Lolita, maltreater, margarita, meter, metre, Peta, peter, praetor (US pretor), repeater, Rita, saltpetre (US saltpeter), secretor, Senhorita, señorita, Sita, skeeter, teeter, terra incognita, theta, treater, tweeter, ureter, veleta, zeta •Batista, Dniester, Easter, feaster, keister, leister, quaestor •speedster •deemster, teamster •scenester • browbeater • windcheater •beefeater •millilitre (US milliliter) •decilitre (US deciliter) •centilitre (US centiliter) •kilolitre (US kiloliter) •ammeter • Machmeter •millimetre (US millimeter) •decimetre (US decimeter) •altimeter •centimetre (US centimeter) •nanometre (US nanometer) •micrometer, micrometre •decametre (US dekameter) •kilometre (US kilometer) • autopista •anteater

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"cheetah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Apr. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"cheetah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (April 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah

"cheetah." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved April 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/cheetah

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.