When Prehistoric Cats and Dogs Competed, Cats Won


A new study published in PNAS shows that in addition to the internet, cats might rule the world (or at least did at one time). According to the study, researchers discovered prehistoric dogs and cats had to compete when it came to food and as it turns out, cats were the better predators.

The role of evolution
The research team was made up of scientists from universities in Sweden, Brazil and Switzerland, they realized the competition to find food played a pretty important part in the evolution of canine lineage.

The better predators
While both dogs and cats were natural predators, cats were apparently better at it. The sassy felines thrived while 40 different canine species went extinct, reported Max Knoblauch of Mashable.

How did dogs survive?
Even though the cats won the battle, there were some tough canine contenders in these ‘hunger games.’ Species such as wolves and foxes held their own against the kitties and became the dogs we know today. However, their survival didn’t upset the survival rate of the cats, said Knoblauch.

So the next time you’re eating in front of your cat, just remember that competition can be fierce.

Here are 5 similarities proving big cats are just like ours >>

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian -- they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.


Cats Don't Take up Much Space

If you've ever tried to share a bed with a golden retriever—or even a tiny dog—you know they take up a ton of space. Between their size, their love for stretching out into everyone's personal space, the room they need to play and exercise, and their stuff (such as a dog bed or dog toys), dogs need a solid amount of room to live a happy, healthy life.

Cats, however, don't need a lot of space to thrive. As long as you can fit their essentials, such as litter boxes (you need one box per cat plus one extra) and food and water dishes, you can pretty much guarantee your kitty will be happy.


The First True Dogs: Leptocyon, Eucyon, and the Dire Wolf

Here's where things get a bit confusing. Shortly after the appearance of Hesperocyon 40 million years ago, Leptocyon arrived on the scene — not a brother, but more like a second cousin once removed. Leptocyon was the first true canine (that is, it belonged to the caninae subfamily of the Canidae family), but a small and unobtrusive one, not much bigger than Hesperocyon itself. The immediate descendant of Leptocyon, Eucyon, had the good fortune to live at a time when both Eurasia and South America were accessible from North America — the first via the Bering land bridge, and the second thanks to the uncovering of central America. In North America, about six million years ago, populations of Eucyon evolved into the first members of the modern dog genus Canis, which spread to these other continents.

But the tale doesn't end there. Although canines (including the first coyotes) continued to live in North America during the Pliocene epoch, the first plus-sized wolves evolved elsewhere, and "re-invaded" North America shortly before the ensuing Pleistocene (via that same Bering land bridge). The most famous of these canines was the Dire Wolf, Canis diris, which evolved from an "old world" wolf that colonized both North and South America (by the way, the Dire Wolf competed directly for prey with Smilodon, the "saber-toothed tiger.")

The end of the Pleistocene epoch witnessed the rise of human civilization around the world. As far as we can tell, the first domestication of the Gray Wolf occurred somewhere in Europe or Asia anywhere from 30,000 to 15,000 years ago. After 40 million years of evolution, the modern dog had finally made its debut.


What Essential Oils Are Safe to Diffuse Around Cats and Dogs

With the increasing popularity of essential oils, many people diffuse them in their homes for therapeutic use. Essential oils greatly help people in various ways such as relaxing and sleeping at night or treating a common cold. But it’s not only humans who use essential oils since many pet owners use these substances on cats and dogs as a natural flea repellent.

But is it safe to do that though? Many pet owners fail to recognize that some essential oils aren’t safe to use directly on their beloved pets. It goes the same with diffusing the oil, which means you have to be careful in dispersing essential oil in your home when you don’t know what it would do to your pet. Cats and dogs have a keener sense of smell compared to humans, which means they smell essential oils better.


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