- "Suddenly the travelers heard strange noises in the depths of the forest, and the Lion whispered to them that it was in this part of the country that the Kalidahs lived. "What are the Kalidahs?" asked the girl. "They are monstrous beasts with bodies like bears and heads like tigers," replied the Lion, "and with claws so long and sharp that they could tear me in two as easily as I could kill Toto. I'm terribly afraid of the Kalidahs." "I'm not surprised that you are," returned Dorothy. "They must be dreadful beasts. "
- ―The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900)
Kalidahs are vicious predators which roam the magical Land of Oz. They first appear briefly in Baums' first Oz book titled 'The Wonderful Wizard of Oz', published in 1900. They mostly stay in the dark forests of Oz and are described to have bodies like bears, heads like tigers, and claws long and sharp enough to tear a lion in two. The Cowardly Lion, like most creatures in Oz, is afraid of the Kalidahs. (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz)
Later, she lead Cap'n Bill and Trot to the same spot to get a flower for Ozma's birthday, and she recounted the story. While there, another Kalidah appeared and attacked, but Cap'n Bill fought it off with his wooden leg and then impaled it into the ground so it could not escape.
While Bill made his raft, the creature spoke to them and laughed at their intentions. The Kalidah revealed that the Kalidahs were uncomfortable around magic. When Bill and Trot went to the island and got stuck, the Kalidah finally escaped and left, going into the forest. (The Magic of Oz)
Kalidahs also appear in non-cannonical stories such as Eric Shanower's "Gugu and the Kalidahs." Phyllis Ann Karr's short story "The Guardian Dove," published in the 1990 issue of Oziana, provides a detailed treatment of Kalidah culture.
Kalidahs appear in the Ozu no Mahoutsukai picture book, which is an adaptation of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
In the Magic Land series, the Kalidahs are replaced with saber toothed tigers. They are exterminated at the end of the second book (although the forest where they lived remains named after them). A single tiger escapes; he is trapped and killed eight years later, during the fourth book.
The party faces a Kalidah in The Wizard of Oz, the 1982 anime. These Kalidahs are giant and fearsome, resembling bears more than tigers. The Kalidah they face falls into a ravine when the Tin Woodman chops off the tree bridge they'd used to cross the ravine.
In Family of Oz (2011), by James C. Wallace II, the Kalidahs play the role of bodyguards for the Cowardly Lion and His court. There is an amusing, yet brief interaction between the Kalidahs and the Queen of the Field Mice during the Cowardly Lion's journey towards the Emerald City.