Dallas Zoo Baby Cheetahs Get An Unusual Cage Mate

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Photo Credit: Dallas Zoo

Two eight-week old male cheetahs are about to start their new life at the Dallas Zoo with an unusual cage mate - An eight-week-old male black Labrador Retriever puppy named Amani.

Winspear and Kamau who weigh a mere 8lbs and 6lbs respectively were born at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, VA. After spending two weeks under the careful observation of experts, they were deemed fit to start their lives at the zoo.

However, when the two got there, they were surprised to be greeted by an equally cute roommate! Little Amani whose name means 'peace' in Swahili has been placed there because experts believe that he will not only be a good playmate for the wild cats but also, provide a calming influence on the naturally aggressive animals. That's because dogs, especially Labradors are very comfortable in public settings and seeing Amani's calm demeanor around the thousands of visitors that are bound to flock to the zoo to see the cuties, may help the cheetahs realize that the humans pose no threat to them.

Photo Credit: Dallas Zoo

This is going to be especially important in the case of these two because they are going to be part of the zoo's Animal Adventure Outreach Program to help teach the public about their highly endangered species. As to whether the strategy will work and if the unusual companions will get along and continue being mates when Winspear and Kamau are over 3 feet tall at the shoulder and weigh a hefty 140 lbs, is anybody's guess. But for now, the three babies seem to be getting along just fine.

Cheetahs, who get their name from the Hindi word 'Chita,' which means 'spotted one' are the world's fastest land animals capable of reaching speeds of up to 70 mph. Oddly enough, these gorgeous cats are not considered part of the elite group of 'Big Cats' that include the lion, tiger, jaguar and leopard because they lack the ability to roar! While these aerodynamic cats once roamed the open grasslands, savannas, dense vegetation, and sometimes even mountainous terrains of Africa, the Arab Peninsula and Asia in large numbers, they are now on the brink of extinction, especially in Asia where they were hunted down ruthlessly for their beautiful skin.

The cats still living in the wild, face numerous challenges ranging from loss of habitat to conflict with humans, as well as the fact, that they are not the strongest of animals and are often unable to fend their cubs falling prey to the more aggressive lions, jackals, and hyenas. With only between 15,000 to 25,000 believed to be left in the wild, conservation programs such as the one Winspear and Kamau are part of, are becoming increasingly crucial for the animal's survival.

Resources: dailymail.co.uk,news.yahoo.com,cheetah.org,bigcatrescue.org

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1189 Comments
  • sirenhead123
    sirenhead123Wednesday, October 7, 2020 at 10:33 am
    they dogs and cheatahs are doing more than playing this should be illeagle
    • imsome1
      imsome1Friday, September 25, 2020 at 11:06 am
      They are so adorable!
      • phoinexx
        phoinexxWednesday, September 16, 2020 at 12:24 pm
        when I'm a adult i want a pet cheetah they're so cute even when they're adults!!😁
        • wolfieland
          wolfielandSunday, August 9, 2020 at 3:26 pm
          yes! i always wanted to c dogs and cats get along! (cheetah is a cat btw)
          • helen0916
            helen0916Friday, August 7, 2020 at 5:05 pm
            Awwww! They are sooooooo adorable!
            • pinkwolfbrose
              pinkwolfbroseFriday, April 10, 2020 at 11:10 am
              to cute
              • emmaline
                emmalineMonday, January 13, 2020 at 10:07 am
                Omg! cute I wish all of us were there! CUTE!!!!
                • cherry_blossom
                  cherry_blossomTuesday, January 7, 2020 at 4:52 pm
                  so cute!
                  • vikenufa-156677772625
                    vikenufa-156677772625Monday, November 4, 2019 at 1:02 pm
                    there so cute! i want to hug it!!!!!! THEY ARE OUT OF THIS WORLD!!!!!!!
                    • garecicy-156950703897
                      garecicy-156950703897Monday, October 21, 2019 at 8:01 am
                      i have never seen real life baby cheetahs ever!!!!!!!! THEY ARE SO ADORIBALE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!