Do cheetahs purr?

Beautiful, proud cheetah. Photo in public domain.
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Yes, cheetahs purr. The sound is a louder version of the domestic cat purr. The cheetah purrs:

  • during friendly encounters
  • when resting and
  • after meals

You can hear the cheetah purr in this video. It sounds exactly same as the domestic cat purr. The video also answers the question as to whether cheetahs can be domesticated. They are quite sweet cats, similar to the puma in character in my opinion.

Cheetahs make a wide range of sounds:

  • yelp – a short, high-pitched ‘yow’ sound heard over long distances up to 2 kilometers. When making this sound the cat opens and closes its mouth quickly. It is used by mother to contact her kittens (cubs) and vice versa.
  • churr – another contact call. It is used by mothers to urge or call her offspring and by male cheetahs to relocate siblings. It has other uses such as (a) a female indicating estrus and (b) a male indicating interest in a female.
  • Stutter – as above for (a) and (b).
  • Gurgle – close range, friendly call.
  • Growl – made during ‘arguments’ with others at kills.
  • Moan – made when threatened by lions, leopards and cheetahs.

Source: page 27 of Wild Cats of the World by the Sunquists.

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