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NEW RESEARCH ON HOW DOGS AND CATS BECAME MAN'S BEST FRIENDS
NY Post ^ | June 6, 2009 | Maureen Callahan

Posted on 06/07/2009 2:50:13 AM PDT by Scanian

They have lived in our homes, been members of the family, slept on our laps for over 10,000 years. Yet it is only recently that science has begun to answer how it is that cats and dogs came to be our most prized companion animals - discovering, along the way, how the domestication of cats and dogs actively helped change the course of human history.

"Domestication," says scientist Carlos Driscoll, "is evolution that we can see." Driscoll is a researcher at Oxford University and the National Cancer Institute in Maryland, where much of the world's leading work on cats has been done over the past 30 years. (Cats, like dogs, have their own versions of human diseases - they suffer from feline leukemia, HIV/AIDS, SARS - and so are especially valuable for scientists.) A happy, unexpected byproduct of this research has led to recent discoveries in how and why these two animals yoked themselves to human beings, and vice versa. When did this pair bonding begin, and why? What were the benefits? How long did it take for dogs and cats to become dependent on humans - or are they, really? And what is it that these animals can tell us about not only our biological makeup and evolutionary history, but about what it is to be human?

(Excerpt) Read more at nypost.com ...


TOPICS: Pets/Animals; Science
KEYWORDS: agriculture; animalhusbandry; cats; dogs; godsgravesglyphs; science
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1 posted on 06/07/2009 2:50:14 AM PDT by Scanian
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To: Scanian

No happy cat is ever truly domesticated. Tolerant yes.


2 posted on 06/07/2009 2:52:38 AM PDT by allmost
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To: Scanian

3 posted on 06/07/2009 2:54:10 AM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet)
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To: Scanian; SunkenCiv; Slings and Arrows
"Domestication," says scientist Carlos Driscoll, "is evolution that we can see."

I think I'll just leave this here.

4 posted on 06/07/2009 3:52:15 AM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Scanian

Does anyone really care?


5 posted on 06/07/2009 4:25:59 AM PDT by Venturer
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To: JoeProBono
The little blurb is wrong about cats.

The Siamese is significantly different in size, shape, and attitude. So are most of the "oriental" breeds, but I bred and showed Measers for 15 years, so that's the one I know best.

And the British cat breeders of the 1880s-90s are the ones that 'fixed' the type (i.e. established a blood line that would breed true to type).

Anybody who has much to do with the Measers will tell you that they are different from other cats.

6 posted on 06/07/2009 5:33:59 AM PDT by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of ye Chasse, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: AnAmericanMother

I also don’t get the idea that cats contributed nothing when humans had them join the tribe: they are ferocious hunters of small rodents, and any agrarian society needed that!


7 posted on 06/07/2009 5:37:01 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: 9YearLurker
A couple of good cats will keep your grain bins safe from rats and mice.

These people obviously have never heard of "barn cats".

8 posted on 06/07/2009 6:00:24 AM PDT by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of ye Chasse, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: 9YearLurker
When mankind learned to plant grains, cats decided to domesticate them as a useful working beast. Their grain fields were used to attract mice and rats for the entertainment and feeding of cats. Today that behavior is shown by the cats keeping humans around to open cans of cat food and empty the litter box.
9 posted on 06/07/2009 6:03:20 AM PDT by KarlInOhio (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, Chrysler and GM are what Marx meant by the means of production.)
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To: AnAmericanMother

Exactly. Sometimes I think that just as people often both study and teach what they need to learn themselves, that those who go into biology to study animals actually have no clue and little understanding about them.

They start with the premise animals are almost some sort of wind-up toy battery-powered by an alien ‘instinct’ and then construct barely applicable tests and experiments to determine whether animals have any thoughts and feelings at all. Then when they conclude that—eureka!—animals do have functioning brains after all, they attribute the most conniving, false and ultimately complicated motives to them possible.


10 posted on 06/07/2009 6:10:18 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: KarlInOhio

It is amazing, isn’t it?


11 posted on 06/07/2009 6:11:02 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: KarlInOhio

Not unlike those birds that have learned to lay their eggs in other birds’ nests!


12 posted on 06/07/2009 6:12:27 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: Slings and Arrows

Ping.


13 posted on 06/07/2009 6:15:49 AM PDT by Springman (Rest In Peace YaYa123)
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To: 9YearLurker
Same old story -- over-educated ivory tower types with no real experience actually dealing with the subjects they study.

My daughter is a Bio major, but she's worked for a vet and on a farm and has been around cats, dogs, and horses since she was born. She brings a practical mindset to the job.

The critters seem to really like her, too.

14 posted on 06/07/2009 6:18:11 AM PDT by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of ye Chasse, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: AnAmericanMother

Yes, I grew up on a farm, and as you know I wasn’t talking about her type at all. Good for her!


15 posted on 06/07/2009 6:20:47 AM PDT by 9YearLurker
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To: 9YearLurker
Thing is, she's not one of those eggheads who wind up teaching and doing research in the ivory tower.

So the eggheads will continue to pontificate, while the field biologists know better but have no platform for their knowledge.

16 posted on 06/07/2009 6:23:32 AM PDT by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of ye Chasse, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: martin_fierro; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1ofmanyfree; 21twelve; 24Karet; ...

· join list or digest · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post a topic ·

 
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Thanks martin_fierro.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach
 

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17 posted on 06/07/2009 6:24:11 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/__Since Jan 3, 2004__Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: KarlInOhio

You are pretty close. Cats domesticated humans by teaching them to make beer from grains, which caused them to settle in villages rather than wander nomadically since it takes time to make beer.


18 posted on 06/07/2009 7:47:04 AM PDT by jdub (A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government.)
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To: martin_fierro; Slings and Arrows; Glenn; republicangel; Bahbah; Beaker; BADROTOFINGER; etabeta; ...

19 posted on 06/07/2009 8:03:15 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("If Dick Cheney is Darth Vader, then Barack Obama is Jar-Jar Binks!")
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To: Scanian
They have lived in our homes, been members of the family, slept on our laps for over 10,000 years.

I gave up on lint rollers about seven thousand years ago. Now I'm just a vaguely human shaped pile of cat fur in my chair. They say the first 10,000 years are the hardest. :-)

20 posted on 06/07/2009 8:15:33 AM PDT by Riley (The Fourth Estate is the Fifth Column.)
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