Although it’s going to well make dogs a touch jealous, the foremost popular pet within the us is now the cat. Capable of showing affection, tidy in habit, never as boisterous as dogs, the cat are often the perfect pet and companion for busy households that simply might not have the time to devote to the attention-hungry dog. While cats certainly do enjoy the corporate of their human friends, they’re also quite happy to easily lie on a soft cushion or sun on a window sill when left alone for the day.
The domestication of the cat coincided with the beginnings of agriculture. Once people started raising grain, approximately 12,000 years ago, rodents became a drag . Stored grain would offer an untold bounty for mice and rats, and while dogs were terrific at hunting game or protecting flocks and villages, they weren’t as efficient at rodent hunting as cats.
It is now thought that the house cat is descended from Felis sylvestris, the cat of the woods. it’s also believed that the partnership between humans and cats began within the Middle East , probably within the Fertile Crescent . Domestication spread rapidly wherever humans were planting crops, and within centuries cats were helping to stay precious stored food safe from rodents over most of the Old World.
Even today, mice and rats destroy many plenty of food per annum , either by eating it directly or by despoiling it with their urine and feces. additionally , rodent urine can spread such dangerous diseases as leptospirosis, salmonella, and Hanta virus. Rats also are liable for spreading plague , also referred to as the Black Death , from fleas.
Unlike the dog, which has basically received ‘good press’ throughout its association with mankind, the attitude of individuals towards cats has been somewhat changeable over the centuries, often to the detriment of cats.
The Ancient Egyptians revered the cat to such a degree that it had been considered to be a demi-god. Harming or killing a cat during this point could bring a sentence of death to the perpetrator. Although Felis sylvestris is that the root stock from which most cat breeds have sprung, another cat, jungle cat , is assumed to possess been bred with sylvestris during this era . Tomb paintings depict cats hunting birds from boats with their human companions. Cats appear in paintings, frescoes, and statuary from Ancient Egypt, and cats were often mummified to assure them of success within the afterlife.
Another people that understood the worth of cats keep rodents suppressed were the Norse. Their goddess Freya rode during a chariot drawn by a pair of enormous cats, and therefore the farmers in Scandinavia would go away presents to those cats to assist confirm that the harvest would be an honest one (and probably shielded from rodent predation by cats).
Famines were common in Ancient China and protecting stored food was of the utmost importance. The goddess Li Shou was the personification of all that’s good in cats and she or he was invoked to supply protection for the house and grain. Statues of the goddess were present in many homes and offerings were made to be assured of her good will.
While those in China revered the cat, there have been some in Japan who had an opposite point of view. Cats were thought to possess the power to become the changelings of princesses that they had killed then entrap unsuspecting princes and cause their downfall.
Undoubtedly, the worst time for cats was during the center Ages in Europe. This was a time when superstition overcame religion, and people’s fear of witches and devils caused them to seem upon cats as instruments of evil. a part of this stemmed from the preference of cats for night, and partly because some older women who might still be practicing ancient religions that were thought to be witchcraft kept the animals as companions and hunters of mice. The Black Death is usually thought to possess become so widespread and severe because numerous cats had been killed, allowing the rat population to blossom.
Fortunately, today cats have moved back to their spot as revered animals once more in many parts of the planet . Loving companions, but still deadly hunters of rodents, these independent, beautiful, and intelligent creatures are important and cherished members of many homes worldwide.