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Cats domesticated over 100,000 years ago?:o

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posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 05:14 PM
I'm not sure how much credence to give to this but for what it's worth this is from the BBC, not Pravda..

DNA traces origin of domestic cat

The earliest archaeological evidence of cat domestication dates back 9,500 years, when cats were thought to have lived alongside humans in settlement sites in Cyprus.

However, the new results show the house cat lineage is far older. Ancestors of domestic cats are now thought to have broken away from their wild relatives and started living with humans as early as 130,000 years ago.

Myself, I think someone's made a mistake - they've added too many zeros and that it should really be 13,000.

[edit on 28-6-2007 by skjalddis]

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 06:37 PM
Yeah, I thought that looked like an extra 0 on the end, too, but maybe it is right, I don't know. I can't really think of a good reason for humans to have domesticated the cat before agriculture, though. Cats serve a useful purpose in keeping rats, mice and other small animals away from crops, but before crop-growing days, I can't think of a practical use for them except companionship or (yes it's nasty...) eating.

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 07:04 PM
I reread the article and I think maybe it's just not very clear about what it's trying to say. I think what they really mean is that the species that became the domestic cat branched off from the other cat families at this time. From what they later say about cats first hanging around humans in order to prey on the vermin attracted to grain stores, well that surely can't have happened before the advent of arable agriculture.

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 07:28 PM
I've always felt like the domestication of both cats and dogs could have started when primitive 'dad' came across a den of the babies and took some home alive ( to eat later and or maybe to amuse the 'lil cave rats in the interim ?). The kids got 'attached' and dad lost his meal.

Surely human children had the instinct or desire to play with something cute and furry long before the adults mastered agriculture.

posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 08:11 PM
Aye - it does say that they "started living with humans as early as 130,000 years ago" - if that is so, then there must have been some other impetus at work. I could go along with the cute pet theory quite easily, I've kept cats most of my life. On the other hand, we're probably looking at a society of highly mobile hunter-gatherers, I don't know how a cat would fit into that context.


posted on Jun, 28 2007 @ 08:28 PM
Just a thought with nothing, scientific evidence-wise, to back it up with:

In pre-agricultural times, those hunter-gatherers would have had to stockpile food for the winter, yes? Tubers, dried meat...which would attract rats and mice.

So cats would have been useful friends back then too. As to who domesticated who....could've have been the cats that decided to hang out with humans and their nice warm fires.

posted on Jun, 29 2007 @ 01:44 AM
That makes sense, cats can be very food driven and would follow rodents and vermin as a food source.

I'm sure rodents have followed people for quite a while since we have a food source for them.

So it only follows that cats would eat the vermin around us. Even if they didn't interact much.

Eventually they joined society as helpers and companions.

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