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Cheetahs Caught A Young Antelope But Did Not Kill It

Photographer Michel Denis-Huot shot this incredible animal scence: Three Cheetahs caught a young antelope, played with it for a while and apparently let it go unharmed!

Astonishingly, these cheetahs, whose instinct is to hunt for food, decided to just play with this baby impala. The cheetahs first knocked the antelope down, but then they remained with the young animal and they were just licking it off and putting their paws on its head. It seems as if these three cheetahs simply weren’t very hungry…

Antelope cuddling with Cheetah (by Michel Denis-Huot)
This cheetah cuddles with the baby antelope…

Why don’t the cheetahs kill the antelope?
It might have something to do with the antelope’s behavior: If the animal doesn’t struggle or run away to free itself, the cheetah’s instinctual drive goes haywire and doesn’t send the necessary instructions to kill. Mix this and a stomach that’s already full and the predator views its prey in a completely different light.

Cheetah licking baby antelope (by: Michel Denis-Huot)
…this one licks off the neck of the antelope.

According to one source this story indeed has a happy ending; after one tense moment when it looked as though one cheetah would bite the impala on the neck, the youngster ran away. On the other hand, some people commented that the antelope has actually been killed and eaten finally. Even others claim that these photos have been manipulated with photography software.

In this context, check out our cool leopard and the mouse story!

So what do we want to believe today…?

More about this story:

Did you like this story? Then share it with your friends and give us a Like on Facebook! This will help us to find and share more precious stories from around the world. Have you experienced something brilliant or an ingenious subject, picture or video to share? Then send us your story.


  • Uh, yeah. Of all those stories, I think I’m going to believe the photographer. He say they ate it, and has pictures that the Mail didn’t print showing just that.

  • Im going to stick to the story said here because it has a happy ending. It makes sense the cheetah loosing its natural instincts to kill were lost due to the fact that the calf didnt run away. Great pics and great story!!

  • Google the photographer’s name and see the whole series!!! Not quite as described!!

  • Seriously? Okay, the sun is at quite a low angle as you can see from the shadows of the animals on the ground and the brush around them, so there would not be a large shadow cast on the animal’s neck.

    Also, ever heard of perspective? In the second picture they are both standing directly parallel to the camera. In the third the antelope is slightly further away. Look at it’s hooves. If they were standing at the same distance their hooves would be at the same ‘height’. This does not mean the antelope is floating in mid-air.

  • I’m sorry, but I can’t buy this. Look at the last image: the shadow of the head of the antelope on the cheetah’s head is missing and the cheetah’s tongue doesn’t cast the right shadow on the cylindrical surface of the antelope’s neck. Also, the size of the antelope is not consistent with the other photos. In the third image, her height is above cheetah’s shoulders while in the second one, antelope’s height is under the same reference. Am I wrong?

  • G., Shalom! Yep, I heard about the lioness which adopted baby animals. Fascinating! And I assure you; the eternal voice of fox-vox will never stop… LOVE!

  • I’ve seen a lionness adopt baby animals on discovery, after a couple hours it’s killed by other members of the pride, this particular lionness repeated with more than one baby impala (or something like that)

    I LOVE you Fox! I’m so thankful to have crossed paths with you wow a few years ago now on Vox!!

    aloha and much love my friend


Comments are closed.

Summary of the Story

Photographer Michel Denis-Huot shot this incredible animal scence: Three Cheetahs caught a young antelope, played with it for a while and apparently let it go unharmed!

About H.R. Fox

H.R. Fox

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