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Prusten is a sound made by the tiger and the snow leopard, also known as chuffing or chuffle (verb and noun).[1] It is a low-frequency equivalent to the purring found in domesticated cats. The animal's mouth is closed and it blows through the nostrils, producing a breathy snort.[2] This sound is non-threatening and often used when two big cats encounter each other on neutral territory, or between courting pairs.[3][4] Mothers use it to their cubs as a form of reassurance.[4] It has been known for tigers and snow leopards held in captivity to use this sound to keepers. Prusten is a German word. It means to sneeze or snort.


  1. ^ "chuffle". Retrieved 15 May 2010. 
  2. ^ "Behavior". Snow Leopard Trust. Retrieved 13 February 2010. 
  3. ^ Peters, G.; Tonkin-Leyhausen, B. A. (1999). "Evolution of Acoustic Communication Signals of Mammals: Friendly Close-Range Vocalizations in Felidae (Carnivora)". Journal of Mammalian Evolution 6 (2): 129–159. doi:10.1023/A:1020620121416.  edit
  4. ^ a b "Communication". SeaWorld/Busch Gardens Animal Information Database. Retrieved 13 February 2010. 

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