The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World

The Lion in the Living Room How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World House cats rule back alleys deserted Antarctic islands and our bedrooms Clearly they own the Internet where a viral cat video can easily be viewed upwards of ten million times But how did cats acc

  • Title: The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World
  • Author: Abigail Tucker
  • ISBN: 9781476738239
  • Page: 320
  • Format: Hardcover
  • House cats rule back alleys, deserted Antarctic islands, and our bedrooms Clearly, they own the Internet, where a viral cat video can easily be viewed upwards of ten million times But how did cats accomplish global domination Unlike dogs, they offer humans no practical benefit The truth is they are sadly incompetent rat catchers and pose a threat to many ecosystems YeHouse cats rule back alleys, deserted Antarctic islands, and our bedrooms Clearly, they own the Internet, where a viral cat video can easily be viewed upwards of ten million times But how did cats accomplish global domination Unlike dogs, they offer humans no practical benefit The truth is they are sadly incompetent rat catchers and pose a threat to many ecosystems Yet, we love them still.To better understand these furry strangers in our midst, Abby Tucker travels to meet the breeders, activists, and scientists who ve dedicated their lives to cats She visits the labs where people sort through feline bones unearthed from the first human settlements, treks through the Floridian wilderness in search of house cats on the loose, and hangs out with Lil Bub, one of the world s biggest feline celebrities.Tucker shows how these tiny creatures have used their relationship with humans to become one of the most powerful animals on the planet The appropriate reaction to a cuddly kitten, it seems, might not be aww but awe.

    One thought on “The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World”

    1. A house cat is not really a fur baby, but it is something rather more remarkable: a tiny conquistador with the whole planet at its feet. House cats could not exist without humans, but we didn't really create them, nor do we control them now. Our relationship is less about ownership than aiding and abetting's the one-sentence summary of this book:cats own usat's basically what you will take away from this book, but you should read it anyway, because it is a highly entertaining study that combines [...]

    2. Don't be fooled. Your precious Fuzzykins is a barely-domesticated hypercarnivore who is probably hypnotizing you with its parasite tainted urine-- when not busy hunting endangered species into extinction.Hmmm. I might need a bit more convincing."Many cat lovers, pondering their blind devotion to a savage little archcarnivore, privately wonder if they might be just a little touched in the head."Well, as a life-long cat lover, I can honestly say I have never wondered this. But author Abigail Tucke [...]

    3. This more was even more fascinating than I had imagined when I read the blurb. For wont of a better word, most cat books are somewhatfluffy. The theme is usually 'oh, they're so cute' and believe me when I say that I can get behind that attitude, I have three cats after all, but this book takes another approach. It is a well researched, evaluative investigation into the phenomenon of cat domestication and the changing ways in which cats have interacted with humans since we started bringing them [...]

    4. The amazing cat book I’d been looking for! This is a fascinating interdisciplinary look at how the domestic cat has taken over the world – both literally and figuratively. A writer for Smithsonian magazine, Tucker writes engaging, accessible popular science. The closest comparison I can make, style-wise, is to Rebecca Skloot’s The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, even though that has much heavier subject matter.Tucker traces domestic cat evolution from the big cats of the La Brea tar pits [...]

    5. This was an interesting book, I thought it was going to be something different than what it turned out to be. This book has a lot, a very lot, of information regarding the domestication of cats, where it started, how it spread etc etc. She takes us back to the origin of cats, back to Anatolia, cats were not indigenous to our country but came here over time. There is a lot of science of evolution, psychology of why we love cats, etc. We also learn how in some instances the introduction of the dom [...]

    6. I was excited about this book when I first heard about it because it sounded like it would be really interesting for cat lovers. I liked it at first, but it lost me pretty quickly. I felt like the book had a pretty negative tone over all, and her point seemed to be that we shouldn't really be keeping cats as pets. Which was interesting, because that wasn't the point she claimed to be trying to make. It also bothered me that she didn't really address any of the problems with breeding purebreds, b [...]

    7. Cat owners laugh about being owned by their pets, but there might be some truth to the sentiment. One of the reasons cats have been so successful as a species is that they’ve been able to get humans to feed and care for them despite the fact that they don’t really have much to offer in return (except their sweet, sweet kisses, ever-so-soft bellies, playful antics and comforting purrs!!). Ok, I admit it, I’m a cat person and after reading this book I am forced to acknowledge that I may have [...]

    8. 2.5 stars. This is not the fluffy, cuddly book I thought it would be. When the author kept stressing that cats are are an "invasive species", I knew I was in for a rough read. Although she does use some wit and humor to temper her writing, this is a very dry read and way too scientific. There is a lot of information about the history of the cat, how it lived outdoors, how it came to live indoors, show cats and cat breeding, a whole chapter devoted to toxoplasmosis (ew!) and another one all about [...]

    9. All you ever wanted to know about Cats.A big surprise was that a pet cat does not help the owner live longer. To my dismay, only dogs can extend a person’s longevity.In ancient Egypt, Cats were house pets and well thought of. Pictures of brown tabbies are pictured on the walls of the tombs.Because of the predatory nature of Cats, especially when they live outdoors, some living animals and birds have become extinct due to the Cats eating them.Cats in today’s world are big business, with speci [...]

    10. I'm a cat-owner, always have been. I love dogs but I've never owned one, always had cats. And I love my little fur-babies, but reading this book did make me side-eye them a little bit, as they dozed beside me in the warm spot next to the radiator, fluffy belly up, paws crocked, snuffling in their sleep. So cute and cuddly and harmless. Right? Wrong. I'm now convinced that the cats will rule the world one day. If they don't already, and there's definitely arguments to be made there, most of them [...]

    11. This wasn't quite what I expected. For some reason, I thought it would be more pop sciencey and less about parasites.Still, it was fairly interesting, even if a lot of it doesn't jive with my individual experiences as a cat person. I found the part about cats really not wanting another cat for company food for thought, as I've often considered whether or not it's something I should consider. It's definitely good to know that my instincts to not attempt it until I have more space were sound.

    12. Auch wenn ein niedliches kleines Kätzchen auf dem Cover-Umschlag abgebildet ist, handelt es sich hierbei nicht um eine Hommage an Katzen und wie süß sie sind. Das Buch versucht der Faszination, die diese kleinen flauschigen Tiger bei uns auslösen, mit Fakten und sachlicher Recherche auf den Grund zu gehen. Es werden Themen behandelt wie: wie konnte die Hauskatze sich so stark verbreiten, wie kann man ihr Einhalt gebieten, wie weit geht die fanatische Katzenliebe (Spoiler: ziemlich weit!), et [...]

    13. Overall, it’s well written and very amusing. There are some interesting (even fascinating) and accurate nuggets of information in this book.Bu, there are numerous factual errors, and more importantly key omissions of data. These damage the credibility of the book overall, and dropped my rating down. Here is a few points to consider:1) The author emphatically made the case that no cat breeders have ever tried to breed cats for temperament. Only for physical appearance. The history of the “Rag [...]

    14. 3.5 stars. Well, we certainly thought this was going to be more FUN, but at least this was interesting and we also learned some things. Still, Rosey and I couldn't help but yell a little bit. Check out our discussion at Robots Read.

    15. Pretty interesting, and pretty disappointing for a cat lover.Tucker loves cats herself, and it feels like that should have dulled some of the negativity, but I think she was trying very hard to stay on the side of science and what is documented and verifiable. I can understand the motivation for that, but it misses a large part of the story. Perhaps she assumes that cat lovers won't be swayed regardless, which would also be understandable. It was very interesting to read comparisons to other dom [...]

    16. Throughout this book, I've argued that it's important to appreciate and animal like the cat for what it really is, not our plaything but a powerful organism with a strategy and a story. Seeing them in this light also means recognizing ourselves, and acknowledging the full range of what we're capable of--our special mix of tenderness and cruelty, and our unlimited, often careless influence.This is a book for cat lovers, but it's not for people who want to blindly adore kitties for being cute and [...]

    17. For cat lovers or for anyone who is interested in the history and lore of the lovely house cat aka "The Lion in the Living Room" will love The Lion in the Living Room: How Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World by Abigail Tucker.Tucker's writing is snappy and her prose is a delight to read. Her writing is backed up with end notes found in the chapter called Notes. At the end of her book Tucker says it is important to realize cats are animals who are powerful organisms and a story. Anyone who has [...]

    18. Very disappointing. Great conceptually. Cats have done much to alter human behavior so as to cater to well cats every whim - or at least those who have homes. But this book did little to augment the superior position of the cat in society. Instead the writing style was careless and annoying, the author seemed to want to try to impress us with her whimsical greater-then-thou writing style. Couldn't stand it. Research was random and delivered in a haphazard style. Author needs to go back to schoo [...]

    19. With so many books about cats published to read, I try avoid those that are cute photo books; or books about how Fluffy, Snowy, Blackie, etc. saved my life although I have read some. I stay away from how-to manuals or behavioural or veterinary guides. And such books as those that reproduce great paintings with cat heads replacing those of people. You know, the self-satisfying smirk of a Siamese painted over the enigmatic smile of the Mona Lisa.After this process of elimination, I am left with a [...]

    20. Enjoyed very much. Mary Roach-style nonfiction, but about cats. Many opportunities for cat puns; none missed. Especially enjoyed learning that middle aged ladies ruined LOLcats for 4chan. And that in a land of so many terrifying species (Australia), house cats are the invasive species. Seriously though, could have used some pictures.

    21. The mission statement of this book can be found in the description on the flyleaf “to better understand the furry strangers in our midst”. Science writer Abigail Tucker does an admirable job but really, can anyone really understand cats?THE LION IN THE LIVINGROOM: HOW HOUSE CATS TRAINED US AND TOOK OVER THE WORLD by Abigail TuckerMs. Tucker, a cat lover herself, takes us on a masterful historic tour of the world of cats and how they came to be the most popular of pets the world over – or r [...]

    22. "Mom, don't bother me now; I'm reading my cat book."-- me, every night as I read this bookI'm going to be completely honest: I wanted to read this book because of that cute cat on the cover. I didn't even know what the book was about until I read the synopsis around October. After reading Abigail Tucker's The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World, I realized that had less than a rudimentary understanding of the cat species. Essentially aww, cats are so cute! Ho [...]

    23. I did not sit down and read this book straight through, so it took me a while. It was not a light, fluffy read, but neither was it a terribly dense dissertation. It covered cats from Their history in Egypt to their taking over the internet. I learned a lot about our feline friends and my own fur baby.

    24. Oh look at that, I think I hate cats now? I really don’t think that was the author’s intention. Well I wouldn’t say I hate cats but my mild indifference to them has been pushed into actual slight dislike by this book – the author really did not paint our feline friends in a very nice light in ‘The Lion in the Living Room’. In fact I think feline friends might be pushing it even.According to ‘The Lion in the Living Room’ your cats are trying to poison and brainwash you, and consid [...]

    25. I loved this book. It tells the story of how the house cat became the house cat in a funny and understandable way. I now know many facts about cats that I never thought I would know. For instance, did you know that cats are on the list of the 100 most invasive species? I laughed out loud many times. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves cats - or who wants cat facts to bandy about at cocktail parties.

    26. Cats have not evolved much through the process of their domestication (such as it is). My theory is that we're actually evolving to be more catlike. More people live solitary lives than ever before, avoiding direct human contact, and when we are forced to be around other people, we study our tiny electronic devices in an imitation of a cat's grooming behavior when caught in an uncomfortable situation. But this is my theory, not Abigail Tucker's. Ms. Tucker looks at how cats came to be domesticat [...]

    27. I found this book frustrating. There were interesting insights, but overall it feels like if you are a dog person - this book will confirm your suspicions of the feline species. If you’re a cat admirer, you’ll feel irritated and let down. At the end, I had a hard time believing the author when she admits to being a cat lover. It certainly didn’t seem that way throughout the whole book, which I wouldn’t have finished unless I had been reading it for a book club. Of the 11 other people in [...]

    28. I received this book from giveaway. First, I am not a cat person so, I don't know why I decided to read this book; however, I am glad I did. The author provided an interesting history of mankind's relationship with cats. While I do not share the author's love of the feline, I now have a better understanding of the behavior of cats and the effects they have on the wildlife in areas in which they are invasive creatures.

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