The black-footed cat is Africa's smallest wild cat species. A fully grown male weighs 1.9 kg on average but not more than 2.5 kg, a female usually only 1-1.5 kg. It reaches a body length of only 50-63 cm (20-25") and a shoulder height of 17-25 cm (6.7-10").

Its head is broad with enlarged, prominent ears.

At night, its large eyes reflect any light with an intensely blue sheen, thanks to the mirror-like layer behind the retina – the tapetum lucidum – which makes double use of the available light.





Its name stems from the black soles of the feet.




Its sleek, tawny fur is marked with bold, black spots and black rings around the legs, which give this diminutive hunter a perfect camouflage, especially on moonlit nights.