Humans have lived with them for tens of thousands of years, but we're still discovering the secrets of one of our most popular domesticated friends — the cat.
The first wave was in the eastern Mediterranean, where cats lived among grain farmers — most likely because of the rodents around stockpiles. Farmers saw cats could control pests and took them in during migrations across Europe.
The second wave started 3,000 years later in ancient Egypt, where cats were worshipped. By the Roman era, cats were all around Europe.
From there, they moved about the world with the help of maritime trade routes. Seafarers kept them on board to catch mice.
But for being such cold-blooded rodent-killers, they've always been pretty cute. The researchers note domestication didn't change much about cats' appearance.