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The Fascinating History of Cats

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Not many people know this, but Cats were first brought to the United States during the hot summer of 1943. The first Cats weren't at all like the Cats of today which have undergone some genetic 'tweaking' to make them more house friendly.

The lucky state of New Mexico was the first US territory to be blessed with Cats. New Mexicans could see that their new four-legged friends made much better house pets than the 'wild beasties' (aka dogs). It was clear that Cats were much softer and loving , but they had short stubby tails, which was thought of as a psychical deformity in 1943. So, after some scientific testing, specially designated Cat Veterinarians began enhancing the Cats with steroids that made their tails extend into longer, luxurious carpets of delicious fur. Another issue was their long talons, which needed to be modified in order to keep Cats in the home (where they belong!). (In the wilds, Cats needed strong nails to fend off their foes and catch their food.) Today, Cats no longer have brittle talons, but softer, shorter nails that feel so good against a cat scratch.

On a personal note, I love reading about the mysterious Cat. I'm hoping to receive some additional books for X-Mas re. WOMAN's best friend! Hint, Hint Sheila!!!! LOL.

Anyway, if anyone else has any interesting facts and/or figures about Cats, please pass WB!

Happy Holidays!

post #2 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by CatsRuleXXX View Post
Not many people know this, but Cats were first brought to the United States during the hot summer of 1943.
oh I read this other web-page which says - quote "Domestic cats first arrived in North America with European colonists several hundred years ago" - unquote did it take them that long to get further north then
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
Interesting?! I just bought this book too! Has anyone else read this?
post #4 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by CatsRuleXXX View Post
Not many people know this, but Cats were first brought to the United States during the hot summer of 1943.
No cats prior to 1943? What about the bobcat, cougar, and other American wild cats? Maybe it's a specific breed of cat that was brought in 1943.
post #5 of 15
Pretty sure none of that is true unless you are talking about a specific breed.

One of the reasons Humans first domesticated cats was to protect their granaries and food storages from rodents.

They originally tried using dogs, but while the dogs would kill the rodents, they would also eat the very food they were charged with protecting because they are scavengers - not hunters. Since cats require a protein rich diet to live, and basically hunt for their survival (in the wild) they rarely bothered eating the grains and other produce that were essential for the survival of non-migratory human beings. In fact, humans trained the cats to hunt even when they were not hungry so that they would constantly be killing rodents who would otherwise decimate food storage areas.
post #6 of 15
There have been domestic cats in N. America as long as there have been people! That has to be a misprint (1943). I personally know people who had cats back in the 20's and their families had them much earlier than that. Was it meant to be funny, or just a mistake?
post #7 of 15
The six fingered cats were among the cats that came over on the Mayflower with the Pilgrims in 1620. Modern "Hemingway" cats are their descendants. Those are the first recorded domestic cats in the Americas. I don't know if the Spanish had them on their ships earlier, but they certainly could have. That book sounds at best like a joke.
post #8 of 15
Gotta be a joke. Cats were often kept on ships to kill the rats, because rats caused major problems by eating food stores and spreading diseases. They would have been brought over by early colonists to protect their hard-earned food supplies. Besides, my grandmother was born in 1919 and had barn cats in Wisconsin all her life.

What book is this, btw? Are you sure they're not talking about a specific breed?

Actually that whole tail thing sounds like a major joke.
post #9 of 15
I don't know about the USA, but my parents grew up on farms and were born long before 1943, and they had cats.

I wouldn't put too much stock into that 1943 information. Sounds like hogwash to me, or at the very least a major typo. Perhaps they ment 1643?
post #10 of 15
The part about their tails is a hoot. This sounds more like a tall "tale," to me.

This must be some kind of joke, right? I'm not getting it, but then maybe it's someone's creative writing. Tails, I'm quite sure, weren't bred into them, stemming from a short stump. I don't know how I know this, but for instance:

specially designated Cat Veterinarians began enhancing the Cats with steroids that made their tails extend into longer, luxurious carpets of delicious fur

Sure they did....who designated them would be my first question. Second would be "steroids?" How would steroids make a tail grow? Then it just launches off into the luxurious carpets of delicious fur stuff.....
post #11 of 15
Here is an overview of cat history found on the internet.

http://www.purrballs.com/ownership/history.html

It doesn't mention how they came to our country specifically but if they weren't here already I assume they came over by ship with the mice and rats?
post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 
Yeah, I got the dates mixed up! Thanks for all of the info though, I TOTALLY appreciate it!

Go cats!

post #13 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larke View Post
There have been domestic cats in N. America as long as there have been people! That has to be a misprint (1943). I personally know people who had cats back in the 20's and their families had them much earlier than that.
Quote:
Was it meant to be funny, or just a mistake?
Like she/he said, not many people know this!
post #14 of 15
I have a older book that has a interesting chapter that I would like to share.

Back in the dark ages the religious people were killing cats because they thought they were evil, they nearly drove the domestic cat extinct. This started a over population of rats in europe, thus starting the black plague.
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by abbycats View Post
I have a older book that has a interesting chapter that I would like to share.

Back in the dark ages the religious people were killing cats because they thought they were evil, they nearly drove the domestic cat extinct. This started a over population of rats in europe, thus starting the black plague.
The moral of the story: Don't mess with the kitties!
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