How Our Feline Friends Have Helped Shape Our Country

Cats are often described as aloof loners with foul moods and temperamental behavior. Even so, they play an important role in the development and culture of the United States. Consider these four ways in which the domesticated feline has helped to shape the USA.

Promoting a Culture of Humane Actions

Domesticated cats are one of the most popular pets living in American households. Because people are so attached to pet cats, laws have been passed about animal cruelty. These laws protect domesticated animals from abuse and neglect. Adoration of cats have also inspired no-kill shelters, trap/spay/neuter programs, and low-cost vaccination clinics for animals.

Learn More in a Formal Setting

Learning more about cats and our history in a formal setting can be a great asset. Earning a master's in American history will introduce you to some of the roles cats played in the development of the USA. For example, you may study the Salem witch trials, in which cats played a prominent role in deciding which women were witches and convicted of witchcraft. A master's degree in American history could also help you discover the roles played by cats on farms, in cities and around houses.

Launching New Lines of Medical Research

Because cats are domestic companions, they have promoted the launch of new lines of medical research. Cats are known to carry the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which causes the infectious disease toxoplasmosis. Exposure to this parasite can cause severe illness in pregnant women, children, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems. Toxoplasmosis is an opportunistic infection associated with HIV/AIDS. Its discovery has helped scientists and researchers to find new treatments for parasitic infections of the brain.

Inspiring Works of Art and Literature

The feline has long been a subject of artists. From the Sphinx of ancient Egypt to the modern works of current artists, cats have played an important role in American works of art. Some of these include illustrations of cats in books such as "The Owl and the Pussy Cat and Other Nonsense Songs". Cats also show up in popular works of literature, such as "Puss in Boots" and Mabel Humphrey’s "The Book of the Cat."

Cats are as popular in art, literature and history as they are in modern households. The inclusion and domestication of cats into everyday living has helped to advance medical research, inspire artists and even change the law. Earning a master's degree in American history will help you to learn even more about the diverse roles that cats play in America.

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