Huehnergard opines it is "equally likely that the forms might derive from an ancient Germanic word, imported into Latin and thence to Greek and to Syriac and Arabic".
Guus Kroonen also considers the word to be native to Germanic (due to morphological alternations) and Northern Europe, and suggests that it might ultimately be borrowed from Uralic, cf.
Failure to control the breeding of pet cats by spaying and neutering, as well as the abandonment of former household pets, has resulted in large numbers of feral cats worldwide, requiring population control.
In certain areas outside cats' native range, this has contributed, along with habitat destruction and other factors, to the extinction of many bird species.
Cats are capable of walking very precisely because, like all felines, they directly register; that is, they place each hind paw (almost) directly in the print of the corresponding fore paw, minimizing noise and visible tracks.
This also provides sure footing for their hind paws when they navigate rough terrain.
Cats, despite being solitary hunters, are a social species, and cat communication includes the use of a variety of vocalizations (mewing, purring, trilling, hissing, growling and grunting) as well as cat pheromones and types of cat-specific body language.
Under controlled breeding, they can be bred and shown as registered pedigree pets, a hobby known as cat fancy.
They may extend their claws in hunting or self-defense, climbing, kneading, or for extra traction on soft surfaces.
This keeps the claws sharp by preventing wear from contact with the ground and allows the silent stalking of prey.
The claws on the fore feet are typically sharper than those on the hind feet.
Unlike most mammals, when cats walk, they use a "pacing" gait; that is, they move the two legs on one side of the body before the legs on the other side. As a walk speeds up into a trot, a cat's gait changes to be a "diagonal" gait, similar to that of most other mammals (and many other land animals, such as lizards): the diagonally opposite hind and fore legs move simultaneously.
In their normal, relaxed position, the claws are sheathed with the skin and fur around the paw's toe pads.