Animal Print EssentialsGeneral › Leopard Skin Print: Spots, Dots and Clusters

Leopard Skin Print: Spots, Dots and Clusters


“You might think he loves you for your money
But I know what he really loves you for
It’s your brand new leopard-skin pill-box hat.”

Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat – lyrics by Bob Dylan

In his 1966 album Blond on Blond, Bob Dylan poked fun at a female fashion victim who
wears a leopard skin pillbox hat. A style of hat made famous by Jacqueline Kennedy in
the early-to-mid sixties. Pillbox hats were doomed for extinction, but the upscale image of leopard skin design is still a king in today’s high-fashion jungle.
Shoppers hunting for that spotted wild cat look they usually call it
Leopard print. And they’re not far off. Leopards have one of the most diversified patterns
of all the Old World cats. Yet leopard print is not the only spotted wild animal pattern.

Here are some animal tips to distinguish your favorite Leopard Print:

* The True Leopard has a paw-like spot pattern, that looks like bloomed roses, named
rosettes. Its head and legs have solid black spots and the belly is usually white.
Leopards in eastern Africa have more circular rosettes, while their southern African
counterparts have square rosettes.
* The Clouded Leopard is smaller in size, and has spots that look like clouds. Its dark
markings are bigger and irregular, and somewhat resemble those of a large python.
* The Snow Leopard has similar rosettes, yet its clusters appear less well defined and
are more widely spaced apart. Its fur is almost grey with brownish-yellow tinges on its
flanks and white fur on its belly, chest and chin.
* The Jaguar has a distinctive dot in the center of its  rosettes. But in both the leopard and
the jaguar a recessive gene, called melanism, often creates a totally
black-colored cat that people identify as a black panther.
* The Cheetah has no rosettes, but solid black spots or tear drops, sort of imperfect
polka-dots that run all over its body.
* The Ocelot, smaller in size, has yellow-mahogany brown fur with black doughnut-shaped
and bar-shaped spots covering its body.

Left to right: 1. “Sand”-colored Leopard 2. Golden-brown Leopard
3. Cloud Leopard, Snow Leopard.


Left to right: 1.Cheetah 2. Jaguar 3. Melanistic Leopard or Panther 4. Ocelot

Now, which of these patterns best describe the Leopard in you?


  1. Comment by Crystle — December 7, 2013 @ 4:37 am

    Thanks for your marvelous posting! I seriously enjoyed reading
    it, you’re a great author. I will make sure to bookmark your
    blog and definitely will come back sometime
    soon. I want to encourage yourself to continue your great job, have a nice weekend!

  2. Comment by Anke — August 21, 2014 @ 2:39 pm

    Excellent post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed!
    Very useful info specially the closing section.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment

Connect With Us

facebookLike us on Facebook

twitterFollow Us on Twitter

blogSubscribe to our Blog