Pets are animals bred by man. They are not related to each other.
The ancestors of our pets were wild animals and were captured by humans. Some may have found their way to humans of their own accord, like the ancestors of dogs. This was mostly done to get livestock. People get meat and leather more easily that way than by hunting. It is also easier to get milk or eggs than from wild animals. Dogs can help with hunting.
Working elephants are not strictly pets. They are not bred but remain as they are. However, they are kept in the house or in the yard because they are useful. Mice and rats are also not considered pets, even if they often live in houses. But they don’t like to be seen there as guests.
Many pets have lost the abilities of their wild ancestors. They can often no longer survive alone in the wild because they have become accustomed to being protected and fed by humans. An exception here, however, is the house cat, which can easily adapt to a life without people.
The oldest pet in the world is the dog. He is descended from the wolf. It has been tamed among humans for at least 15,000 years. Some scientists even say that this happened 135,000 years ago. The breeding of pigs, cattle, and sheep began around 10,000 years ago in the Middle East. It only started with horses about 5,000 to 6,000 years ago.
Why do people keep pets?
Most pets are kept by humans to feed themselves. Cattle were bred to give as much milk as possible as adult cows. The man then needs this milk for himself instead of leaving it to the calves. Other cattle or pigs are bred in such a way that they become as fat as possible. Then you use their flesh. Leather can be made from the skin. People keep poultry such as chickens or turkeys in order to get to the eggs as easily as possible, but also to the meat.
People keep many animals as working animals: in agriculture or on construction sites, animals such as horses and cattle were used to pull and carry heavy loads. Donkeys and mules, but also camels, dromedaries, and llamas are still popular working animals in certain countries. Today you can still see horse-drawn carriages because some people like them to move around so comfortably.
The house cat used to have a very important task: it was supposed to hunt and eat the mice because they were eating the supplies of the people. Dogs were often used for hunting or for guarding houses or farms. Today they often guard flocks of sheep because of wolves. The police use dogs to track down criminals because dogs are so good at smelling.
Animals are also bred as fur animals. They often live in very poor conditions: the cages are cramped and the animals are bored. They often attack each other for these reasons. Humans then only need the skin with the fur from these animals. He makes jackets, coats, hats, collars or hood edges, or bobbles out of it.
100 years ago, animals also began to be used in experimental laboratories, for example, to try out and improve new medicines. Groups of people are always fighting back. Despite this, animal testing is still widespread.