Are Lions Closer to Cats Or Dogs?

Were lions closer to cats or dogs? That is a question that has baffled researchers for decades. While lions have no telltale snout and do not bark like dogs, they are close relatives of both cats and dogs. And they’re even capable of having cubs. In this article, you’ll learn more about lions and their tiger cousins.


While hyenas are considered feline relatives of dogs, they are in fact not. They belong to a different taxonomic suborder than jackals, which are canids. The two groups of canines have three species, which are quite different from one another. Although the two species are related, there are some differences that make them look closer to dogs and cats than others.

One difference between lions and hyenas is their hunting strategy. They hunt in packs of up to eighteen members, which are known as clans. Hyenas hunt in groups of up to 80, where they share the prey among themselves according to rank and dominance. While lions fight each other, hyenas hunt together in large groups, forming strict dominant hierarchies. While lower-ranked members of the clan often feast on the last of the prey, they also protect their territories by hunting cooperatively.

The spotted hyena is a predator that can eat a whole prey in a single sitting. These predators will feed next to lions and will wait for them to finish their kill before grabbing the prey themselves. They are also known to steal bits of livestock, primarily due to the fact that they are believed to be the source of livestock deaths. For this reason, hyenas have been heavily hunted as pests.


While cats and dogs are close cousins, the lion and tiger are quite different. Lions are much larger than dogs, and the difference is evident even in their sounds. Lions have a deep roar that is nearly 114 decibels. It is said that a lion roar can be heard up to five miles away. The dog and cat both belong to the same family of animals, but they are much closer to dogs in terms of body size. The domestic cat is a much smaller animal than a lion, and foxes are close relatives to wolves, coyotes, and cheetahs.

Lions and dogs are closely related in their appearance and behavior. However, their diets are quite different. Although they are both Carnivora, dogs and lions are distantly related to each other. In addition to dogs and cats, lions are related to other marine animals such as seals, jaguars, and tigers. Although they have many similarities, they are distinct animals.


Both big cats and small cats belong to the family of felines, which includes lions and cats. While the lion’s fur is distinctively spotted, the cats’ is plain and flat, so the difference is more pronounced in the males. Also, most species in this family are solitary and hunt during the night. So the answer to the question, “Are lions closer to dogs or cats?” is a resounding “yes.”

Despite their size, lions and dogs share several characteristics. Both species are carnivores, capable of great speeds and a powerful bite. Moreover, many dog breeds are reminiscent of lions. Chow chows and Tibetan Mastiffs look like lions. Besides being adorable, both species are capable of killing prey. The difference between the lion and the dog is most evident when they pounce on their victims.

Puma concolor

The puma is a large, brownish cat found in the New World. It is also known as cougar, mountain lion, or panther in the eastern U.S. Although not native to the Eastern Hemisphere, pumas once ranged much farther than most mammals of the Western Hemisphere. They live primarily in forests, and tend to avoid areas that are populated by humans, including farmlands. The puma concolor has six subspecies, including the Florida panther, the eastern cougar, and the mountain lion.

The puma is similar in appearance to dogs, but differs in weight between subspecies. In the northern half of their range, male pumas are twice as large as those found farther south. Similarly, males in the northern half of their range weigh about 40-60 percent more than females, while females are slightly smaller and heavier. The puma’s tail, also known as the “tail”, is between 25 and 37 inches long, and its head has erect ears.