Did you know that cats have not always been domesticated animals? If today they tend to be more independent animals and skilled hunters, being both sweet and unsociable in different moments, these are a few of the traits they have inherited by their ancestors.
On today’s post, we will explain how domestic cats, which are related to wild animals such as lions and tigers, have become this beloved pet of ours. Check it out:
Domestic cats through the years
It is believed that cats have been domesticated around 10 – 12 thousand years ago, however, the specific location is not known, since archeological evidence has been found in different sites around the world where domestication took place.
One of the oldest archeological evidences is located in Israel, since a cheek tooth that may be about nine thousand years old was found there. In the same area, in Israel, there was an ivory statue of a cat, dated over 35000 years.
How and why cats have been domesticated
The existence of mice and waste spread around the streets were some of the appealing conditions that made these animals begin living in the villages. Since they were independent and did not cause any kind of trouble, the coexistence between them and the locals was peaceful.
The presence of cats in the Egyptians’ daily life was widely depicted in paintings. They were portrayed eating from bowls, wearing collars, and even sitting on chairs.
Cats acknowledged as gods
Bastet goddess was one of Egypt’s main divinities and she was depicted with the head of a domestic cat. Egyptians loved cats to the point that they began to worship them – they would also mummify and bury the animal along with their beloved ones.
In order to keep cats solely in Egyptian culture, their export to other countries was forbidden. Nevertheless, the presence of cats in vessels was very ordinary. They would be taken to other places and follow trade routes with Greek and Roman people to the Roman Empire, by the way.
It is not known when cats first came to America. However, in the manuscripts of Christopher Columbus and other people in the crews, there is plenty of evidence that they took cats on board in their expeditions.
The relationship between cats and men
One of the main factors that have made it possible for men to domesticate cats was their ability to get along well with men and to adapt to the places where they lived. As a matter of fact, it is precisely due to their origins that domestic cats are considered as more independent animals, demanding less care from their owners.
Besides, they still keep evolving as the years go by, thus, new and exotic species eventually come up.
Did you know about the history and evolutionary process of domestic cats before? Do you feel like your kitten has an inner “lion”? Share with us your experiences with your pet and what you have thought about his history!