The deadliest cat in the world will surprise you!

Have you ever sat down and really thought about whether you'd be more scared of a lion or a tiger if you bumped into one in the wild? Well, we're here to blow your mind: This is the deadliest cat in the world!

The deadliest cat in the world is also one of the cutest and smallest.
The deadliest cat in the world is also one of the cutest and smallest.  © Collage: IMAGO/Ardea

The fluffy fellows that patrol our homes, with their soft paws pitter-pattering on our floorboards, are a far cry from the beasts that roam in the sands of Africa and the jungles of Asia. They are smaller, friendlier, slower, and don't have to rely on their instincts for their next feed. It'll come as a shock to you, then, that the deadliest cat in the world is closer to a tabby than a tiger.

When you think about the animal world record for deadliest feline, you wouldn't think of this tiny little rascal. It's far too cute to be the deadliest cat in the world, after all, so what the heck is going on? Let's find out!

What is the deadliest cat in the world?

The African black-footed cat is considered the deadliest cat in the world, despite its tiny size. These adorable little creatures are successful in approximately 60% of all their attempted slayings, a predation rate that outstrips even the likes of tigers, lions, and other big cats.

What makes the African black-footed cat, also known as the small-spotted cat, is that it's the smallest wild cat in Africa. These tiny little felines look closer to your standard domestic kitty than a deadly cat from the heart of Africa, but are actually far more effective hunters than their bigger counterparts.

These profoundly well camouflaged kitties are native to multiple countries in southern Africa, including the likes of Botswana, Namibia, Angola, and Zimbabwe. They are listed as vulnerable by the IUCN, largely due to illegal poaching for their meat.

African black-footed cats are unbelievably fluffy, and look less formidable than your average Maine coon, and yet are some of the most violent and dangerous animals in the world!

Why is the black-footed cat the world's deadliest wild cat?

The black-footed cat is the deadliest wild kitty in the world due to its remarkable hunting techniques, which comes down to speed, stealth, and patience. Ultimately, these tiny little cats camouflage remarkably well into their surroundings, largely due to their gray fur, but their hunting instincts go far further than that.

In general, these beautiful little cats will take out their prey either by utilizing their remarkable speed and the cover afforded to them by being so small, their patience and willingness to sit still for long periods of time, or the silent tapping of their paws and they sneak stealthily upon on their victims. Overall, these incredible technique account for a predation rate of more than sixty percent!

Black footed cat size – It's tiny!

Averaging only around 2–4 pounds in weight, and 15–20 inches in length, the Black-footed cat is insanely small for its level of viciousness. Seeing as an adult male lion averages at around 400 pounds, and is a less successful hunter, the size of these tiny (fluffy) mammals make them some of the world's most impressive hunters.

These creatures don't look too dissimilar to your standard domestic kitty, and are just as cute. They also hunt similar creatures as a house cat due to their small size, meaning that the black-footed cat might be the deadliest cat in the world, but it's only deadly to small rodents and birds, not bigger beasts.

Can the black footed cat be domesticated?

Black-footed cats are wild cats found in southern Africa, known for slaying birds and rodents at an unprecedented rate. These tiny creatures are not known for being calm or docile, do not like humans very much, and will always seek out their next feed. They are instinctive animals that cannot be trained or controlled.

As a result, the black footed cat cannot and should not be domesticated. This would result in many shredded couches, scratched up arms, and damaged doors, so it's best to leave them in the wild where they belong.

Who would have thought that this little dude is the most dangerous cat in the world?
Who would have thought that this little dude is the most dangerous cat in the world?  © IMAGO/agefotostock

Is the black-footed cat dangerous to humans?

Black-footed cats are not dangerous to humans and will not attack unless provoked. We are much bigger than they are, and quite intimidated. As a result, they may scratch or bite us in self-defense (so don't harass or annoy them), but there is no risk that they will cause any serious damage.

Warning: While these little dudes ain't going to kill you, they could carry diseases. As a result, if you get scratched or bitten by a black-footed cat, it's best to go to the doctor immediately and get the required shots. They can also then test you for any potential contaminants.

The deadliest cat in the world is unbelievably adorable!

There are some ridiculously cute cats out there in the world, but few are as confusing as the black-footed cat. These tiny little darlings kill more animals than any other feline friend, yet they look ripe and ready for a nice big hug. It's truly absurd, truly adorable, and one heck of a great conversation starter.

Next time you're at a loss for what to say, pull this fact out: The black-footed cat, this tiny little kitty, is actually the world's most dangerous feline. Trust us, everyone will be interested, you'll be the life of the party.

Cover photo: Collage: IMAGO/Ardea

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