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

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A New York Times bestseller about how cats conquered the world and our hearts in this “deep and illuminating perspective on our favorite household companion” (Huffington Post).

House cats rule bedrooms and back alleys, deserted Antarctic islands, even cyberspace. And unlike dogs, cats offer humans no practical benefit. The truth is they are sadly incompetent mouse-catchers and now pose a threat to many ecosystems. Yet, we love them still.

In the “eminently readable and gently funny” (Library Journal, starred review) The Lion in the Living Room, Abigail Tucker travels through world history, natural science, and pop culture to meet 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-turned-hunters on the loose, and hangs out with Lil Bub, one of the world’s biggest celebrities—who just happens to be a cat.

“Fascinating” (Richmond Times-Dispatch) and “lighthearted” (The Seattle Times), Tucker shows how these tiny felines have used their relationship with humans to become one of the most powerful animals on the planet. A “lively read that pounces back and forth between evolutionary science and popular culture” (The Baltimore Sun), The Lion in the Living Room suggests that we learn that the appropriate reaction to a house cat, it seems, might not be aww but awe.
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About the author

Abigail Tucker was the first ever staff writer for Smithsonian magazine, where she remains a contributor. She previously wrote for The Baltimore Sun. Her work has been featured in the Best American Science and Nature Writing series. The first word of both of her daughters was “cat.” She is the author of The Lion in the Living Room: How House Cats Tamed Us and Took Over the World.

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Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Oct 18, 2016
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Nature / Animals / General
Pets / Cats / General
Social Science / Anthropology / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Cats have been popular household pets for thousands of years, and their numbers only continue to rise. Today there are three cats for every dog on the planet, and yet cats remain more mysterious, even to their most adoring owners. Unlike dogs, cats evolved as solitary hunters, and, while many have learned to live alongside humans and even feel affection for us, they still don't quite "get us" the way dogs do, and perhaps they never will. But cats have rich emotional lives that we need to respect and understand if they are to thrive in our company.

In Cat Sense, renowned anthrozoologist John Bradshaw takes us further into the mind of the domestic cat than ever before, using cutting-edge scientific research to dispel the myths and explain the true nature of our feline friends. Tracing the cat's evolution from lone predator to domesticated companion, Bradshaw shows that although cats and humans have been living together for at least eight thousand years, cats remain independent, predatory, and wary of contact with their own kind, qualities that often clash with our modern lifestyles. Cats still have three out of four paws firmly planted in the wild, and within only a few generations can easily revert back to the independent way of life that was the exclusive preserve of their predecessors some 10,000 years ago. Cats are astonishingly flexible, and given the right environment they can adapt to a life of domesticity with their owners-but to continue do so, they will increasingly need our help. If we're to live in harmony with our cats, Bradshaw explains, we first need to understand their inherited quirks: understanding their body language, keeping their environments-however small-sufficiently interesting, and becoming more proactive in managing both their natural hunting instincts and their relationships with other cats.

A must-read for any cat lover, Cat Sense offers humane, penetrating insights about the domestic cat that challenge our most basic assumptions and promise to dramatically improve our pets' lives-and ours.

«Un libro lleno de sorpresas; hace que mires dos veces el mundo que te rodea». Elizabeth Kolbert, autora de La sexta extinción

Los felinos son criaturas increíbles: comen prácticamente de todo y viven casi en cualquier parte, gobernando por igual dormitorios o islas antárticas desiertas. Pero los gatos nos hacen muy pocos favores a los humanos, sobre todo comparándolos con los perros. Entonces ¿por qué los alimentamos y los acariciamos y nos obsesionamos con ellos en internet? ¿Cómo esos diminutos felinos se han convertido en señores globales?

            Para entender mejor a los peludos desconocidos que viven entre nosotros, la escritora de temas científicos Abigail Tucker investiga cómo los gatos domésticos han utilizado su relación con los humanos para convertirse en uno de los animales más poderosos del planeta. Rastrea su ascenso desde la Prehistoria a la moderna locura por los gatos, se encuentra (y mima) a campeones con pedigrí y a los últimos mutantes, asiste a una convención sobre los derechos felinos y recorre la naturaleza en busca de gatos domésticos huidos.

            Lleno de agudo reporterismo y vivaz ingenio, Un león en el sofá es una aventura a través de la historia, las ciencias naturales y la cultura pop. Es la fascinante historia de cómo los gatos han conquistado el mundo... y el corazón de los humanos.

«Una nueva mirada a la enigmática criatura que desafía las reglas normales de la domesticación al tiempo que una investigación divertida, inteligente y reveladora sobre el genio de los gatos. Un libro maravilloso para quien tenga un león en su sofá».

Brian Hare, autor de Genios. Los perros son más inteligentes de lo que pensamos



«Un viaje delicioso y amable a través de la historia de la criatura más enigmática del mundo: el gato domesticado. Una lectura obligatoria para cualquiera que alguna vez haya sido dueño, o que haya tenido como dueño, a un felix catus».

Virginia Morell, autora de Animal Wise



«Un viaje asombroso e hilarante que sigue a los felinos desde que eran carnívoros prehistóricos solitarios hasta llegar a ser los indiscutibles campeones de memes en internet. Tucker ha escrito un libro generoso que también es un estudio científico sobre nuestros más inescrutables compañeros peludos».

David Epstein, autor de El gen deportivo 



















——伊麗莎白.寇伯特Elizabeth Kolbert,《第六次大滅絕:不自然的歷史》作者


——艾琳.派波柏格Irene M. Pepperberg,《你保重,我愛你:我和我的聰明鸚鵡艾利斯》作者


——理察.康尼夫Richard Conniff,《失落世界之屋:恐龍、王朝與地球上的生命故事》(House of Lost Worlds: Dinosaurs, Dynasties, & the Story of Life on Earth)作者


——維吉尼亞.莫雷爾Virginia Morell,《動物心智:我們如何解讀動物的感知》(Animal Wise: How We Know Animals Think and Feel)作者


——布萊恩.黑爾Brian Hare,《天才神犬:狗比你想得更聰明》(The Genius of Dogs: How Dogs Are Smarter Than You Think)作者


——大衛.艾波斯坦David Epstein,《運動基因:科學剖析傑出運動表現》(The Sports Gene: Inside the Science of Extraordinary Athletic Performance)作者 

出版社 紅樹林 (城邦)

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