European saber-toothed cat

The European saber-toothed cat was the size of an African lion. Its legs were longer than the lion’s and its body sloped down from the shoulders towards the tail – similar to the shape of the hyena.

Classification – Family

It is wrong to call the saber-toothed cat a “saber-toothed tiger”. There is no animal called a saber-toothed tiger. The saber-toothed cat has nothing to do with the tigers, as they belong to their own group. Cats are put into three groups:

  1. Saber- toothed cats with among others the European saber-toothed cat and the famous Smilodon fatalis that had 18 cm long canine teeth.
  2. Pantherinae with lion, tigers, and leopards among others.
  3. Felinae with serval and ocelot among other, but also our domesticated cat.


Scientific name: Homotherium latidens.

Length: 2,30-2,50 m.

Height: Approx. 1,10 m.

Weight: 150–225 kg.

Food source: Meat. It hunted woolly mammoth and woolly rhino among others.

Distribution: Found in Germany, England, Portugal, Spain, and France.

Status: Extinct. So far the youngest finding of European saber-toothed cat is from Germany, and it is 300,000 years old. In 2000 fishermen found the lower-jaw of a saber-tooth in the North Sea, which was only 28,000 years old. This suggests that the saber-toothed cat lived in Europe much later than previously thought. No findings from Denmark.