Cute Pictures of Dogs and Cheetahs Forming an Unlikely Friendship

Cheetahs are pretty big cats and the fastest animals on Earth, but are also very sensitive. They get anxious and stressed very quickly. They also struggle to socialize with each other, which stops them from procreating and can affect the cheetah population. That’s why they need help to prevent them from becoming extinct. The most surprising solution was to give them their own emotional support companion dog.

Seeing that cheetahs needed some assistance, zookeepers have given these animals emotional support dogs. It might seem weird to imagine a cheetah therapy dog, but this unlikely friendship helps both species.

Why Do Dogs and Cheetahs Get Paired?

Zoos provide a support dog for cheetahs because these big cats are naturally shy. Cheetahs are so shy that they won’t interact with each other and end up not breeding. This is why they are becoming an endangered species.

The cheetah companion dog can help build its confidence. Dogs have a naturally comforting and calming nature, which relaxes the felines. The zoo will pair a cheetah cub and dog so that it picks up on the dog’s behavior and cues. The dog will often be the dominant one and guide the feline.

Captive cheetahs have singular companion bonds: You can introduce an old dog to a new cheetah but not an old cheetah to a new one. Calm dog breeds like golden retrievers, and Labradors are the best to pair with these felines.

That’s why we have shared a video from CBS News and pictures below. Check out these beautiful pictures of the cheetah and dog’s unlikely friendship, and let us know your thoughts. Share it with your friends to see the cute cheetah and dog friends play.

Cheetah and Dog Cuddling in the Grass

A puppy and young cheetah cuddling in grass

Image credits: Columbus Zoo

How Do Animals Like Cheetahs and Dogs Get Along?

A cheetah with a support dog will learn to imitate its behavior and become more aggressive and confident. They model the dog’s calm demeanor. The cheetah’s dog provides much-needed companionship and support so that it learns not to fear its surroundings. The cheetah never hurts or harms its friend.

Dogs are wonderful companions for people or creatures who are stressed and fearful. They are so good at their job that one owner even got an emotional support dog for his dog who has anxiety!

A Cheetah Cub Kissing a Puppy

A puppy and a young cheetah are sitting and kissing

Image credits: Columbus Zoo

Cheetah and Dog Best Friends Cuddling

A puppy is lying on the grass and a young cheetah is on a puppy

Image credits: Columbus Zoo

How Long Can a Cheetah and Emotional Support Dog Live Together?

There are many beautiful stories of cheetahs being paired with dogs since they were cubs. One such example is the San Diego Zoo cheetah and dog, Ruuxa and Raina, who have been friends since they were babies. The zoo will first introduce the puppy and cub to each other so that they can smell one another through a partition. Slowly, they can engage in brief supervised visits, and the cheetah cub plays with the dog.

Each pairing situation can differ; some take a few weeks, while others take 2–3 months. The two friends are also trained to be comfortable spending time apart in case they are separated. The cheetah anxiety dog can remain with it for years, and they do everything together except eat. These wholesome dogs are a great source of support for the felines.

Cheetah-Dog Best Friends Lying in the Grass

A puppy and cheetah are in the grass and a puppy is licking cheetah's paw

Image credits: Columbus Zoo

Who Thought About Pairing Cheetahs and Support Dogs?

Cheetahs and dogs were first paired together in 1976 in a small town in Oregon. The research scientist and conservation biologist Laurie Marker was taking care of a cheetah cub named Khayam. Since cheetahs are companionable litter-mates, she paired the fastest animal with a dog.

Marker found a Lab-mix named Shesho, and they soon became fast friends. This blossoming friendship and astounding level of support is exactly why dogs are better than cats. Who are we kidding? Cats are adorable and awesome, too!

Dog and Cheetah Running in the Zoo

A dog with a wood stick in its mouth and a cheetah are running together

Image credits: CBS News

Cheetah and Emotional Support Dog Sitting Together

A dog and cheetah standing together on a wooden box

Image credits: CBS News

Cheetah Conservation Also Relies on Dogs

One of the most unique things about this cheetah-dog friendship is that it can help with the conservation of these big cats. In Africa, the Cheetah Conservation Fund works to protect cheetahs in their natural habitat.

They breed special dogs and give them to Namibian farmers when they are eight weeks old. These dogs protect the farms and livestock from cheetahs and other predators. That’s why the farmers don’t have to worry about protecting their livestock, which is their livelihood, and hence don’t kill the cheetahs. These kinds of animal programs greatly help the endangered species.

Watch the Video Here:

How Do You Feel About This Beautiful Love Story?

It’s lovely to see how the cheetahs that are so shy start to blossom and open up after befriending a dog. This unusual inter-species friendship truly works wonders! Nobody would imagine cheetahs being so friendly and playing around with dogs. But what’s even more remarkable is that some people have befriended cheetahs. These big cats seem more social than we ever imagined!

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