How Fast Can a Cat Run

How Fast Can a Domestic Cat Run? The Fastest Speed Of A Cat

What is the fastest a cat can run?

The fastest a cat can run is 30mph over a short distance. Cats are agile runners but don’t have the muscles required to sustain running at fast speeds over long distances.

How Fast Can a Domestic Cat Run?

Cats may not have a cheetah’s neck speed or a dog’s endurance, but they are quick runners, and some can outrun the average human speed.

Domestic cats are generally regarded as the laziest house cats, but new research suggests they have a surprising amount of endurance.

New research reveals that domestic cats can run up to 27 miles per hour, which is pretty fast considering they weigh just over a pound and depend on the breed, but in general, the larger and fatter they are, the slower they tend to run.

Domestic cat breeds

If you live in the UK, you’re lucky – cats are just about as popular as ever.

In 2013, households containing a cat grew by 6.1%, from 9.6 million households in 2012 to 10.9 million.

According to the Pet Breed Info website, the UK now has approximately 19.8 million pet cats, with the most popular pet being the British shorthair.

Ten most popular domestic cat breeds:

  • Abyssinian
  • American Shorthair
  • American Wirehair
  • British Shorthair
  • Chartreux
  • Cornish Rex
  • Egyptian Mau
  • Exotic
  • Manx
  • Persian

The domestic cat is, for the most part, a breed of cat originally developed as a hunting animal, as it is believed that it resulted from the domestication of the wildcat from Asia.

Most modern domestic cats are very similar to wildcats, the only noticeable difference being the coat color.

How Does a Cat’s Running Speed Affect Its Breed?

Fastest speed cats are often more agile, while slower cat breeds are often more relaxed.

Speed for cats is determined mainly by their genes.

Cats with a low speed are often more independent, and cats with a high speed are often more predictable. Other factors can affect the speed of a cat.

A few breeds of cats have been identified as having a faster running insane speed than others.

For example, the Siamese is known as a fast breed, which means that a cat of this breed can reach a speed of 10 miles per hour.

On the other hand, the Ragdoll is known as a slower cat breed, which means that a cat of this breed can only reach a record speed of 5 miles per hour.

Other active breeds also have running speeds that vary from one another.

How Does Age Affect A Cat’s Running Speed?

Cats reach full physical maturity at around 7 months but develop their speed and endurance for approximately 2 years.

In small cats such as the domestic cat, a male’s maximum speed is typically around 29 miles per hour (47 km/h), and a females is around 27 miles per hour (43 km/h).

Small cats, like domestic cats, have a body designed for short, rapid bursts of speed.

In large cats such as jaguars and lions, males’ maximum speed is around 56 miles per hour (90 km/h), and females’ is around 54 miles per hour (87 km/h).

Large cats have a body designed for long distance running.

How Does a Cat’s Running Speed Affect Motivation?

Cats’ speed can significantly affect whether it is stimulated to attempt an escape.

Not only does a cat’s speed affect motivation, but the length of the journey does as well.

The longer the journey, the more likely a cat is to know that it’s getting somewhere.

A cat that runs for a shorter time is more likely to stop if it doesn’t seem to be getting where it’s going.

What Are The Ranges Of Running Speeds In Cats?

The domestic cat, also known as the breed of a house cat or domestic house cat, is a small, usually furry, domesticated, and carnivorous mammal that humans value for its companionship and physical ability to hunt vermin and household pests.

Cats are pretty unique creatures when it comes to running.

They run at various speeds determined by their breed and sex and can run as fast as dogs, but only on short distances.

Cats are admired for their grace and agility. They are also the fastest animal running speeds on the planet.

The record holder is the Cheetah with a speed of around 70 km/hour.

However, it should be noted that the Cheetah is not a pure cat but belongs to the small cat family.

The fastest pure cat is the Serval.  Their top speed is around 75 km/hour.

Can a cat run faster than a dog?

A recent study published in Physiology & Behavior found that a cat can outrun a dog by a long shot.

Researchers at the University of Bern in Switzerland looked at the fastest house cats known, running impressive speeds of 27 different species, and found that the average speed of a cat was 6.2 miles per hour.

The average speed of a dog was 5.6 miles per hour.

The cats’ success was impressive because the scientist’s measurements were made on a treadmill.

Cats are far more agile and less likely to tire than dogs, which makes them better at running long distances.

How high can cats fall?

Cats have a terminal velocity of about 60 miles per hour.

Cats can fall from an average of 52 feet (16.5 m) without injury.

Cats have a fantastic sense of balance, so they can walk away from an accident or fall that would kill or severely damage a human.

They are excellent climbers but can fall from great heights too.

It’s not uncommon for cats to jump five feet or more from high places.

It’s not safe for them to do this—they can easily break a leg or get hurt—but it’s also not uncommon for them to do it.

There’s something about the spontaneous nature of cats that makes them want to climb.

Why Do Cats Run Around Like Crazy?

A study of the social behavior of domestic cats was published in the journal Developmental Behavioral Sciences in 2011.

The authors, Frans B. M. de Waal of Columbia University and Susan Millan of the University of California, Berkeley, described the results of their study, which was conducted by video-recording the behavior of 40 house cats in their natural environment and measuring their activity levels.

  • Cats are much like dogs; they must be in physical contact with other cats, often in groups.
  • They are ambush predators, meaning they are great at hiding and waiting for the right moment to strike.
  • This means that they need to be ready to move at a moment’s notice.
  • Cats run around like crazy when they are happy. This is to express their happiness to the world.

Comparing the Speed of Cat with Other Animals

Cats are well-known for their incredible speed and agility and are often considered some of the fastest animals on the planet. But just how fast are they compared to other animals? In this article, we’ll look closer at the top contenders for the fastest animal on the planet and see how cats stack up against them.

Cheetahs – The Reigning Champions

Cheetahs are widely regarded as the fastest animals on land, capable of reaching speeds of up to 70 miles per hour. With their lean and muscular builds, they are designed for speed and can accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in just a few seconds.

They can maintain their top speed for short distances, making them incredibly effective hunters. When compared to cats, cheetahs are in a league of their own.

Domestic cats can reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour, which is impressive in its own right but pales in comparison to the speed of a cheetah.

Greyhounds – The Speedy Sprinters

Greyhounds are another breed of animal that is known for their incredible speed. These racing dogs can reach up to 45 miles per hour faster than most cats. They have long, lean bodies built for sprinting and can quickly cover much ground.

When it comes to comparing cats to greyhounds, it depends on the type of race. In a short sprint, a greyhound would likely come out on top. However, over longer distances, cats have more endurance and would be able to maintain their speed for a more extended period.

Horses – The Powerhouses

Horses are not typically considered fast animals, but they are pretty speedy when they get going. They can reach top speeds of up to 55 miles per hour, which is faster than most cats and even some greyhounds. They are mighty animals with large muscles that allow them to cover much ground quickly.

When comparing cats to horses, it’s important to remember that horses are much larger and more powerful animals. While cats are undoubtedly fast and agile, they are no match for a horse’s power and speed.

Birds – The Aerial Acrobats

While not typically considered fast animals, some birds are incredibly speedy when they take to the skies. For example, the peregrine falcon can reach up to 240 miles per hour in a dive. Other birds, such as the sparrowhawk and the gyrfalcon, are also known for their speed and agility in the air.

When comparing cats to birds, it’s important to remember that they are two very different types of animals. While cats are certainly fast on the ground, they are no match for the speed and agility of a bird in flight.


In conclusion, cats are swift and can run at impressive speeds. Factors like breed, age, weight, health, and terrain can all affect a cat’s speed, but on average, domestic cats can run up to 30 miles per hour (48 km/h). Some of the fastest cat breeds in the world include the Egyptian Mau, Bengal, Savannah, and cheetah. It’s important to note that while these speeds are impressive, it’s essential to provide your cat with plenty of exercises and mental stimulation to keep them healthy and happy.


Q: Can all cats run at the same speed?

Ans: No, different breeds and individual cats have varying speeds. Age, weight, and health can also affect a cat’s speed.

Q: How do cats run so fast?

Ans: Cats use a combination of muscle power and the elasticity of their tendons to propel themselves forward. They have long, flexible spines and powerful leg muscles that enable them to stretch their legs far apart and cover more ground with each stride.

Q: Can cats outrun dogs?

Ans: It depends on the breed of dog and cat. Some dogs, like greyhounds, are incredibly fast and can outrun most cats. However, some of the fastest cat breeds can outrun many dog breeds.

Q: How can I help my cat stay healthy and active?

Ans: Regular exercise and playtime help keep your cat healthy and active. Consider providing your cat with toys, scratching posts, and interactive games to stimulate them mentally.

Q: Can cats run in a straight line?

Ans: Cats can run in a straight line but are agile enough to change direction quickly if needed.

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