Since 2010, the world has been celebrating the cheetah each December 4th as International Cheetah Day
Why December 4th?
It is the birthday of Khayam, a cheetah Dr. Laurie Marker raised from a cub at Wildlife Safari, in Oregon. Khayam was trained for the first research project in re-wilding and inspired her first trip to Namibia in 1977.
Dr. Marker took Khayam to Africa to see if she could be taught to hunt in the wild. Through trial and error, Dr. Marker was successful in her efforts, and she eventually brought Khayam back to the US.
It was during this time that Dr. Marker found out about how cheetahs were being exterminated by Namibian farmers who viewed them as vermin, and she vowed to do something about it. So Dr. Marker became the cheetah’s champion because of Khayam, and chose this animal’s birthday as a day to promote cheetah conservation in her honour.
What can you do to celebrate International Cheetah Day?
Here are a few things Canadians can do to help celebrate International Cheetah Day on December 4th:
- Be a wildlife ambassador. Tell your friends and family about the cheetah.
- Show solidarity through fashion. Wear cheetah print (a single accessory or head to toe!)
- Swap your online profile photo for a cheetah. Choose one here
- Join the conversation on Twitter by using hashtag #SaveTheCheetah & #IntlCheetahDay
- Watch and share this special International Cheetah Day video message from Jeff Corwin.
- Get some stylish cheetah gear from
- Just for kids: download a free colouring sheet (PDF)
- Make a donation to support cheetah conservation!
More about International Cheetah Day here!