Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsZoology · 1 decade ago

Why are Cheetahs such bad long distance runners?

I heard that if a cheetah goes over 90 yards it gives up on the chase and needs like a hour to catch its breath is this true

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Alot of it has to do with the muscle fiber composition

    see anybody here who says that it is because of them choosing to do so is wrong.... they are not endurance type animals an animal like a wolf can run for miles because they are slow twitch dominant animals which means they are even better long distance runners then short distance.But a Cheetah has a muscle composition of roughly 95 % fast twitch muscle fibers to 5 % slow twitch which means they are great for explosive activity like Jumping, Sprinting, and so fourth. Cheetahs don't choose not to run they are just not genetically made to run long distances... another type of dog that comes into mind is a greyhound they are couch potatoes and lazy dogs but run extremely fast why? because they have a muscle composition of roughly 80 % fast twitch to 20 % slow twitch.

    Cheetahs have no stamina because of there genetics plain and simple

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  • 1 decade ago

    Cheetahs goes into anaerobic metabolism when sprinting, in order to achieve such high speeds. They can move long distances at much lower speed. Anaerobic metabolism means there is not enough oxygen to convert all of the glucose into carbon dioxide and water. Instead, some of the glucose is converted into lactic acid. Lactic acid is toxic, and it disables muscles. Therefore, cheetah running at top speed will build up lactic acid, and it will not be able to keep running at that speed. Rather than building up lactic acid to the point that it will be completely disabled (and cannot run at all), it will give up. That is because being disabled on the open savanna is dangerous, since other predators, such as lions and hyaenas, may move in to kill the cheetah.

    Dogs use a different strategy. They will jog along at a low speed, following the prey. The prey will sprint away when they see the dogs, building up lactic acid in the process. The dogs will not chase the prey down by sprinting but will just follow it, giving it no chance to recover from the lactic acid buildup. Over time and long distances, as the prey keeps sprinting whenever it sees the dogs, the prey eventually becomes exhausted by lactic acid buildup and the dogs will move in for the kill.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Though cheetahs are built like dogs, they are still felines. Cats have low stamina and can only stay at their top speed for a couple of seconds while their prey can usually endure for much longer. Cheetahs usually succeed on the hunt about 50% of the time.

    Canine predators (such as wolves, dholes, African wild dogs, coyotes etc..) are quite different. They can chase their prey for very long distances until it is too exhausted to keep going or fight back, then they tear it to pieces while it is still alive. Hyenas, though not part of the canine family, hunt the exact same way.

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  • Sheena
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    At 15 miles per week you have a good base milage. Since you do mostly long distance, your soreness is undoubtedly caused by using new "sprint muscles". It is good to have one speed session per week in your program. Just be sure to warm up very well before. Soon your legs will adapt to the extra strain and you'll be stronger. People are born with a certain percentage of fast twitch and slow twitch muscle fibers. You can't change that percentage, but you can train slow twitch fibers to respond like fast twitch, and vice versa. The only thing that will affect your long distance ability is that as you practice sprinting you might be neglecting your long runs which will affect your endurance.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The fastest cats got the food. The ones that got the food lived. The ones that lived had baby cats. And so on and so on. Evolution and the survival of the fittest.

    There are no known factors in the cat's environment that would dictate a need to be a long distance runner.

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  • Cheetahs can run extremly fast for a short period of time. Meanwhile, it could run all day if it only ran slowly. Its like if you were to walk for 3 hours or run for 2 hours. Which would you pick? Cheetahs need to catch their prey so if they run slowly for a long time, their prey will most likely get away. When it runs fast, they can outrun their prey!

    Source(s): Knowledge
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  • 1 decade ago

    Cheetahs are designed for short bursts of energy to catch their prey. This is the reason they are capable of running so fast. Other animals are designed to wear out their prey until the prey is fatigued and gives up.

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  • 4 years ago

    Bah! We all know cheetahs can run 75 miles an hour without rest.

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  • 5 years ago

    Like the rabbit-a prime example-they do not make PYRUVIC acid during respiration, like we humans do. As the 1 correct answer above stated-the animals make lactose, lactic acid instead of PYRUVIC acid, thus they must falter due to the disabling affect of that compound[lactic acid] and we humans can keep going due to our compound-Pyruvic acid being made by our bodies in response to respiration[breathing]-an enabling affect.

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  • 5 years ago

    Cuz they eat only meat and sleep 20 hours a day.

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