How We Domesticated Cats (Twice)

  • Published on Nov 6, 2019
  • A 9,500 year old burial in Cyprus represents some of the oldest known evidence of human/cat companionships anywhere in the world. But when did this close relationship between humans and cats start? And how did humans help cats take over the world?
    Big thanks to these paleoartists for allowing us to use their wonderful illustrations:
    Julio Lacerda (who illustrated the Cyprus grave site):
    Ceri Thomas (who illustrated Felis silvestris lybica):
    Produced in collaboration with PBS Digital Studios:
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  • Science & TechnologyScience & Technology

Comments • 3 648

  • TornadoOfTerror _
    TornadoOfTerror _ 16 hours ago

    These cats are so adorable TvT

  • binyamin2021
    binyamin2021 18 hours ago

    @PBS Eons, I know you already made a video on Ediacran life, but could you make a video talking about the divergence of animals and fungi (or holozoa and holomycota?)?! Thank you!

  • 1 minute ago
    1 minute ago 19 hours ago

    I hate cats

  • touraj azmoudeh
    touraj azmoudeh Day ago

    but really DID WE?!!!

  • Ch L
    Ch L Day ago

    Much peed on my playstation

  • Parker Addams
    Parker Addams Day ago

    "we" domesticated cats. they chose this.

  • Canzandridas Joe

    I started with PBS Space Time, and now I'm hooked to PBS Eons... I don't really know if I want or should check if there're more

  • Balaji Ponnusamy

    Ancient human used cats to clean their mess within their settlements but what's happening today?

  • Casey Bourbon
    Casey Bourbon Day ago

    This is great mainstream media PBS...Now I can eliminate one explanation of how cats were "domesticated."

  • King Tua
    King Tua Day ago

    Can we domesticate crocodiles

  • Nickolas H
    Nickolas H Day ago

    Who else here is from Cyprus? We the kitty island of Europe. 😊🐱🐈

  • HiWetcam
    HiWetcam Day ago

    See the disgusting bent spine ‘ideal’ German Shepherd pic at time 5:00?

  • Harry Lime
    Harry Lime Day ago

    Cats are still kill for thrill animals. That has never been bread out of them. They kill to kill, not just to eat..
    Australia has a real problem with feral cats.. harmless animals in Australia that have lived there for thousands of years like the koala bear and the sloth are being wiped out by feral cats. it is not known how many species of indigenous animals that have lived in Australia for thousands of years have already been wiped out by the cat ...

  • xenomorph özkan n

    I live in cyprus and ı have 5 cats

  • Wassoll Das
    Wassoll Das Day ago

    Is a cat actually "domesticated"? I mean, usualy we use "domesticated" on lifeforms, that have, from one point onwards, an evolution that is controlled by humans instead of nature and by this clearly differ to the non-domesticated variant by DNA.

    Humans domesticated wheat/corn and fruits and vegetables, horses and sheep and goats and dogs. But cats?

    If cats are domesticated, then the genepool of house cats would need to be different from the genepool of wild cats. Their genepool would need to be optimized for a life alongside humans. (Like dogs genepool is. Human took a wolf and cleansed the genepool from everything he doesnt like and then he picked very rare genetical traits that he liked and made them so common that every single dog has them. THATS what is called "Domesticated". Thats totaly different from "tame".

    "Tame" is = the animal has LEANED to exist alongside humans. "Domesticated" means, the animals DNA was altered to perfectly exist alongside humans. Thats why one usualy warns from "tame" wild animals. BEcause their DNA is still wild, they can suddenly turn back to wild behavior. Domesticated animals should have that behavior removed from their genepool. At least mostly.

  • EbuHasan sabbah
    EbuHasan sabbah Day ago

    Human cant domesticate cats cats domesticates humans

  • Bahrain
    Bahrain Day ago

    9500 years ago he had a boat !! How did he get to Cyprus

  • scotttufts
    scotttufts Day ago

    Think about the 18 hundreds where cats will hunt rabbits and flay them for you oh wait that was 1997 for me

  • Photo Finish
    Photo Finish Day ago

    This story is just one big play on words.

  • Photo Finish
    Photo Finish Day ago

    Dumping grounds, just like the British dumping pigeons everywhere.

  • frep you
    frep you Day ago

    are you sure the cats did not domesticate humans ^_-

  • Shadow Realm
    Shadow Realm Day ago

    Cars rule the word

  • Agustin Mario Quiroga

    You guys got anything on the peopling of the Americas ?

  • Lorkhanable
    Lorkhanable Day ago

    I have a question for a video! Why do some Asian peoples have thin eyes?

  • Peter Walker
    Peter Walker Day ago

    Yes well, if they were 10 times larger our relationship with them would be somewhat different ...

  • mr spring
    mr spring Day ago +1

    Do a video on evolution of ants

  • TANGT2
    TANGT2 Day ago +1

    I saw a feral cat in a plantation yesterday, I was happy to see cats living in natural habitats.

  • Sujay Shah
    Sujay Shah Day ago

    Cats: "How We Domesticated Humans (Twice)"

  • Maxenne Dalgelish


  • pepe6666
    pepe6666 Day ago

    we domesticated them twice because they wanted in, then wanted out, then wanted in again

  • Marwan Mohammed
    Marwan Mohammed Day ago

    The cats chose us and we never chose them.there the boses

  • Ryan M
    Ryan M Day ago

    What is this guy talking about. There are way more than six hundred million people on the planet.

  • drtyrrant king
    drtyrrant king Day ago

    Leave that guys pet alone jezz

  • Michael Knight
    Michael Knight 2 days ago

    I am just going to say this and get it off my chest. This is a total ripoff of, "Today I found out"! Total rip off. I think if you look at the earlier episodes of that show though.... you have to say they are stupid. Hopefully this show gets it's own flavor.

  • Galactic Vixen
    Galactic Vixen 2 days ago

    Humans reading: *How we domesticated cats twice*

    Cats reading: *how we domesticated humans twice*

  • Romeishome
    Romeishome 2 days ago

    Ancient human: Hey cat. Domesticate?
    Ancient cat: I do what I want.

  • Buff Barnaby
    Buff Barnaby 2 days ago

    Cyprus is The Pentagon for cats...planning to take over the world.

  • Buff Barnaby
    Buff Barnaby 2 days ago

    I leave faucet dripping so if I die kitty has water. She loves faucet water.

  • Brenna Gilbertson
    Brenna Gilbertson 2 days ago

    so can we undomesticate them again pls

  • uhde1000
    uhde1000 2 days ago

    So I have 5 cats and they are outdoor and indoor cats and if we leave home for weeks at a time they can survive on there own by hunting and eating they also make there own shelter but if they want they also come inside and chill with us and eat from the food we give them so are they domesticated or not?

  • Nikki With The Blog
    Nikki With The Blog 2 days ago

    They are definitely not domesticated lol. I had a house cat from birth and when I tell you that was a damn wild cat. Even after being neutered. He ran away after 4 years. Probably out here living his best life.

  • ZappaBlues
    ZappaBlues 2 days ago

    Right mew,..... groan

  • aron hallam
    aron hallam 2 days ago

    Buried with a man bun

  • Kia Brown
    Kia Brown 2 days ago +1

    Cats have been here for thousands years I'm sure just like their cousin before them some have gone extinct sadly

  • Derek Leiro
    Derek Leiro 2 days ago

    I feel like the relationship we have with cats is: you feed and provide shelter for me then I'll let you pet me

  • Francis Muir
    Francis Muir 2 days ago

    Cats domesticate us in ways that are not mutually exclusive with our domestication of them. This happens often with companion animals. Livestock have less impact on their herders.

  • Kristinapedia
    Kristinapedia 2 days ago

    Just because I cat has healed fracture’s does not mean it was healed by human. It probably healed on it’s own. They had no way to know the cat had a fracture because they didn’t have x-rays back then. 🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️

  • Zach Kline
    Zach Kline 2 days ago +1

    if there was a “domesticated cat” on that island buried with a man, that proves cats didn’t all come from one species of wild cat

  • Jadin Andrews
    Jadin Andrews 2 days ago

    We have never domesticated cats, they domesticated us

  • Rohan Ganguli
    Rohan Ganguli 2 days ago

    this video should be called how we think we domesticated cats...

  • boludoescoces
    boludoescoces 2 days ago +1

    Slow down please!

  • Anthony Monegro
    Anthony Monegro 2 days ago

    We??? Nah you.

  • Black Ice
    Black Ice 2 days ago

    feralization and required socialization would indicate that cats were never domesticated and its a learned behavior out of generations of cohabitation convenience

  • PadMAD3k
    PadMAD3k 2 days ago

    And the cats are like "How we've domesticated hoomans".

  • quokka flunk
    quokka flunk 2 days ago

    cats would need domesticating twice

  • J'Dinkaledge Morgoon

    single, middle aged women are responsible for the recent boom in cat population.

  • Kera Atkins
    Kera Atkins 2 days ago +1

    Peeing in laundry baskets? Who lets their cat do that? Lol

  • Numberofthings
    Numberofthings 2 days ago

    Cats actually domesticated themselves.

  • Deb Carsey
    Deb Carsey 2 days ago

    Who knew man buns were popular so long ago...

    • Nikki With The Blog
      Nikki With The Blog 2 days ago

      With a flower in the hair to go along with it. a pretty feller he was lol

  • Peanut
    Peanut 2 days ago

    I loved this!! I love all kitties in the world