Cheetah vs Wolf: Who Would Win in a Fight?

When it comes to cheetahs and wolves, they are both experts in their ways. But who would win in a fight? The cheetah is the fastest land mammal, but a wolf is known to have more stamina. 

So, who will outdo the other during a fight? Keep reading this article as we uncover their abilities and what makes them different.

Read: Lynx vs Wolf: Who Would Win in a Fight?


What is Cheetah?


The cheetah is a large feline predator known for being the fastest land animal. They are found primarily in Africa but also in some parts of Iran. Cheetahs have a slender and muscular build, with long legs and a spotted coat.

They can run at incredible speeds of up to 70 miles per hour in short bursts, making them highly effective hunters. Cheetahs are also known for their distinctive black “tear marks” on their faces, which help to reduce glare from the sun and improve their vision during hunting.

Despite their impressive speed and hunting abilities, cheetahs are considered vulnerable to extinction due to habitat loss, poaching, and other threats.

What is Wolf?


Wolf is a carnivorous mammal that belongs to the Canidae family. They are found in different parts of the world, including North America, Europe, and Asia. Wolves are known for their social behavior and hunting skills. They live in packs of up to 20 members, which are led by an alpha male and female.

Wolves have a thick fur coat that helps them survive in cold environments and are also excellent runners and swimmers. They primarily hunt large herbivores such as deer, elk, and moose, but they can also eat smaller prey like rabbits and rodents.

Wolves are important to their ecosystems as they help control their prey species’ populations. Despite being feared and hunted by humans, wolves are considered an important species in many cultures and are protected by law in many countries.

Cheetah vs. Wolf Fact Sheet

Length1.0 – 1.5 meters1.8 meters
Height65 – 95 cm80 – 85 cm
Weight21 – 70 kg40 – 50 kg
Speed50 – 80 mph30 – 38 mph
Strength12,000 lb406 PSI
Habitatsavannah, grasslands, shrublands, temperate and hot desertstundra, mountains, taiga grasslands, temperate forests and deserts
Foodimpala, steenbok, springbok, antelopes and gazellesbison, elk, deer, and moose
Lifespan8 – 15 years14 – 20 years
Bite power300 – 350 PSI400 PSI
Predatorshyenas, leopards, and lionslike beers, Cougars, Black bears, and coyotes
SoundChirping, purring, or growlinghowling, whimpering, growling, and barking


The cheetah belongs to the family Felidae. Members of this family have rounded heads, flat faces, large ears, facial whiskers, sharp canine teeth, and large eyes. Do not confuse them with leopards. Cheetahs have slim bodies and are swifter than leopards. 

On the other hand, the wolf belongs to the family Canidae. Members of this family have long faces, powerful jaws, and large canines. They include wolves, dogs, jackals, coyotes, and foxes. 


The body lengths of cheetahs and wolves vary depending on their specie, age, and gender. The longest species is the giant cheetah. They existed in the olden times, but due to climate change, they have become extinct. The males grow longer than females, reaching a body length of 1.0 to 1.5 meters.  

Unlike Cheetahs, wolves can grow to 1.8 meters, with their tails ranging from 30 to 60 cm. The gray wolf is the longest among its species. 

Adult wolves are longer than cheetahs; the longer the body length, the stronger the stamina. 


Height measures how tall an animal is from shoulder to toe. Cheetahs typically grow between 65 and 95 cm (2.2 – 3.0 ft) in height. Cheetahs have thin, long legs, and it could be for this reason that they look tall.

Canis lupus, also known as the gray wolf, is the tallest among its species.  A fully grown wolf can measure 80 – 85 cm (30 – 34 in) at shoulder height. 

Height plays a crucial role in the wild during hunting and identifying danger. In a fight, the taller the animals, the higher the chances of winning, but it depends on certain parameters like their strength.


A fully grown cheetah can weigh approximately 21 and 70 kg. The body weight varies depending on the age and if the habitat has plenty of food. Cheetahs in places where there is plenty of prey to feed on tend to grow larger than the others. 

The largest wolf species weigh between 40 – 50 kg. The gray wolf is the largest when compared with the other species. 

The larger the body size, the higher the energy it possesses. Larger animals are likely to win in a fight with a smaller animal.


Cheetahs are the fastest land mammals ever recorded on earth. They can run at a speed between 50 and 80 mph. The top speed of cheetahs gives them a lower chance of losing prey. But the speed also helps a lot when running away from danger. 

On the other hand, wolves are a bit slower; they can run at a speed of 30 to 38 mph. This gives them a higher chance of losing prey, especially when the prey is faster. 

The tall and slim leg with a swift body makes the cheetah run at a higher speed when compared to wolves. If speed is the only parameter to check during fighting, then most probably, a cheetah would win the fight.


Although small, a cheetah possesses incredible power in its slim body. And we can measure the power through its hopping speed. A cheetah produces 100 watts per kg power output during a run. Such power is higher than most animals in the wild.

However, wolves are slow when compared to cheetahs. But they endure much when chasing prey. They can run for miles until the animal becomes exhausted and vulnerable to attack.

Hunting Technique 

Cheetahs are exceptional in hunting; their running speed and camouflaging skin make them almost impossible to lose prey. Once they reach their prey, they initiate a high running speed and deliver a powerful slap once they are close enough. Immediately when they catch the prey, they kill it through a stranglehold on the neck. 

Wolves have an ambushing character, chasing prey over long distances for hours to spot the right prey to kill. Wolves are known for their endurance and persistence when chasing their prey.


Cheetahs occupy many habitats ranging from savannah, grasslands, and shrublands to temperate and hot deserts. Cheetahs spend most of their time on the ground, but they can sometimes climb trees. Their sharp curved claw makes them to hold firmly on the bark of trees.

Wolves also occupy many habitats and only live in places with animals to prey on. Such habitats are tundra, mountains, taiga grasslands, temperate forests, and deserts. 


Cheetahs are predatory animals, and their diet mainly consists of meat from small animals like impala, steenbok, springbok, antelopes, and gazelles. Cheetahs mostly feed on animals they can kill, even if it’s a large one. The cheetahs can sometimes hunt the young ones of big animals like buffalo and wild pigs. 

Wolves are also carnivorous animals and love eating large hoove animals like bison, elk, deer, and moose. Wolves love hunting in packs, and it is for this reason that they are able to take down such big animals. 

Wolves also feed on small animals like rodents, beavers, and hares. Therefore, the diet a wolf will mainly feed on depends on the type of prey existing in the habitat. 


A cheetah’s average lifespan is 8 to 10 years in the wild. But when under human care, the cheetah can live between 12 to 15 years. However, some human activities like pouching can cause hunger, thus reducing their lifespan. 

A wolf can live approximately 14 years in the wild and about 16 years in captivity. Depending on human care, a wolf can live to around 20 years. 

The lifespan of an animal depends on several factors, such as diseases and food availability. Sometimes, diseases and food can kill an animal before adulthood. 

Bite Power

A fully grown healthy cheetah can have a biting power of 300 to 350 psi. The muscles connecting the jaws are small due to the small size of the jaw. But never forget about the sharp teeth that can tear out flesh within a short time.

On the other hand, wolves have a biting force of approximately 400 psi. There are strong muscles connecting the wolf’s jaws. 

The cheetah’s biting power is helpful in holding or latching on prey. But the strong power jaws of a wolf are helpful in crushing bones.


Although cheetahs are prey animals, other predators also prey on them. Animals like hyenas, leopards, and lions prey on cheetahs. In the wild, cheetahs will do their best to avoid occupying the same territories with their predators.

On the other hand, wolves are food sources for animals like beer, Cougars, Black bears, and coyotes. Coyotes are opportunistic feeders and eat vulnerable animals like the young wolves. 

Although both of these animals are fierce in their ways, it’s challenging to fight and outdo their predators.


Cheetahs produce various types of sound depending on the circumstance. For example, a cheetah will produce a chirping sound with its young one while purrs or growls to denote contentment. A cheetah’s other sounds include hissing, moaning, and spitting.

Wolves sound in categories, including howling, whimpering, growling, and barking. But wolves usually produce a combination of sounds like growl-bark or bark-howl. Wolves bark or howl to show warning and whimper to show willingness to nurse.


Like the other animals in the Falidae family, the cheetah’s eyes are wide open and positioned on the front of its flat face, making the position exceptional in binocular vision and perception. 

The retina has fewer rod photoreceptor cells and more cone photoreceptors, which allows the eye to distinguish various colors. The eye’s positions are well adapted to judge the distance of prey and speed when running. 

Unlike humans, the wolf’s eyes have only two color receptors: yellow and blue. The two color receptor makes them red-green color blind. Unlike cheetahs, wolves’ eyes are on each side of the narrow face fit for front visions.

Read: Coyote vs Husky: Who Would Win in a Fight?

Who Would Win in a Fight? Cheetah or Wolf

The answer to the question: “Who would win in a fight?” is the wolf. A fully grown cheetah is taller than a wolf but slender. It has claws that are not retractable but are mainly used for climbing trees and digging holes when it’s raining. And so does the wolves; they have claws for digging holes and have heavier body when compared to the cheetah. However, the stamina of a wolf can outdo that of a cheetah.

Cheetahs have sharp teeth using them to kill prey, and so do the wolves. But a wolf’s jaws have stronger muscles than those of a cheetah. 

The strong jaws explain why wolves hunt on large animals like bison while cheetahs prey on small animals like gazelles. The strong jaw makes the wolves able to break strong bones. 

However, the swiftness and agility of cheetahs make them exceptional runners, thus reducing the chances of losing prey. However, the endurance and persistence of wolves in chasing prey shows how strong they are. They can run for several miles until the prey is exhausted and easy to kill.

Disclaimer: This blog should not be considered as being professional pet medical advice. The content published on this blog is for informational purposes only. Please always consult with a licensed and local veterinarian for medical advice.

About Shaun Clarke

Shaun is passionate about pets and animals, especially dogs, cats, and rabbits. He owns a dog and a couple of cats too. He loves visiting wildlife sanctuaries and shares a strong bond with animals. When he is not writing, he loves to do a barbecue in the backyard with his family and friends.