Scarterran cats come in some unusual colors compared to real world Earth cats, but they are mostly fully recognizeable. Scarterran cats have the same general intelligence, temperment, size, and abilities as real world cats.
Superstitions and Views on CatsScarterran cats have a wide vareity of legends and superstitions associated with them, both good and bad. General opinions on cats vary greatly from society to society and individual to individual. Cats are at least loosely associated as symbols of more than half of the Nine. To Greymoria and her followers, cats are associated with magic and darkness. Even among mages who shun Greymoria, cats are the most prevailent familar by those mages who opt to take familars. Zarthus and his followers value cats because they are nocturnal hunters, that act independently have have great senses. In fact, Zarthus affiliated Spirit summoners usually summon giant cats when they need a land based fighters. Korus is a god of dichotomies and bridges. Korus and his followers value cats for their symbolism for straddling worlds. A roaming outdoor cat is a bridge between civilization and the wild. A few both, inside and outside of Korus' core followers believe cats are bridges between the living and the dead or Fae Home and the Mortal Plane. Nami and her followers commonly associate cats with freedom and independence as well as travel. All traits Nami embodies in spades. Hallisan is commonly associated with lions and Khemra is commonly associated leopards. Both are commonly summoned by their affiliated Spirit summoners. Admittedly this is a loose tie to domesticated cats but Guardians and Keepers more often than not view domesticated cats favorably. Cats are commonly associated with travel and bridges. There are superstitions that some/most/all cats have a limited ability to travel between planes of reality. For instance some believe cats guide souls to the afterlife or that the honored dead can revist loved ones in the bodies of cats. Others believe cats try to steal souls and that cats embodying dead spirits only take the spirits of the most evil and cowardly souls afraid to face their true judgement. It is noted that cats tend to be more sensitive to the presence of undead or the restless dead than most people and even most other beasts. Domesticated cats tend to be calmer and friendlier on or around holidays and dates associated with the honored dead and they tend to be more skittish and reclusive on times associated with the loose and restless ghosts. Cats are all also associated with good and/or bad luck or are viewed as omens of future events depending on what color and age the cat is and what the cat is doing, such as a black cat crossing's one path causing bad luck or a speckled cat staring one down being a sign of a major life changing decision ahead.
Like horses and dogs, cats have breed traits determined largely by elemental forces. Unlike dogs and horses, selective breeding of cats is fairly difficult. Most cats, even most domesticated cats, breed as they will, so regional cats tend to superficially reflect the regional humans. If most of the long standing regional humans are fiery and watery hybrid, so are the cats. Earthy cats tend to be larger than other cats. They are usually much more mellow than other cats, They tend to have brown, dusty, roan, or black fur. Earthy cats often make good house pets as they are less independent and more cuddly than most other cats. Fiery cats are very spirited and aggressive and have great endurance. They tend to have reddish orangish fur. As they get older, their fur is streaked with dark greys. They make lousy pets but great mousers. They also tend to depopulate birds from areas they live in. Watery cats are intelligent and inquisitive embodying the curious cat to a "t", Unlike others cats, they have little issue with water and are not shy about swimming. They tend to have light blue or vaguely greenish fur. Airy cats are very fast and they are very skittish embodying the scaredy cat archetype. They are a bit flighty and have low attention spans. They also are the most prone to wander of any cat. They tend to have white, golden, or silvery coats. All cats are considered to be senstive to the supernatural, but cats that have relatively balanced elemental traits are considered extremely senstitive to supernatural world. Since the cats themselves are metaphysically balanced, they can sense imbalances well.
Cats were domesticated from their wild forebears by elves in the the Second Age. Elven farmers kept them around to keep mice and other pests away from grain storage. This gradually led to cats being occasionally viewed as cuddly pets rather than simply utilitarian rodent killers. Domesticated cats began to be adopted by gnomes and other races throughout Scarterra. After the Second Unmaking, most of the mortal refugees didn't bother to flee with their cats in tow. Some of them even ate their cats out of desperation. It is a negative stereotype of dwarves that they like to eat cats. A lot of the newly minted stray cats died of starvation or exposure during the Second Unmaking, but a lot of cats adapted to their new environments. At the dawn of the Third Age, many Scarterrans of different races opted to adopt and re-domesticating cats both to defend their grain silos from rodents and as pets.
"We keep a pair of cats on the ship to keep rats and mice at bay, figuratively and literally. They are watery cats to make them comfortable around water but with just enough earthy traits to keep them from wandering off too far at port, hopefully. That's why we have two cats in case we lose one. It is not particularly difficult to breed a good mouser that can handle life on a ship, but you don't see many elves or humans for that manner try anything more complicated than that. In the Second Age, a lot of idle rich opted to breed the most exotic looking varieties of cats they could find, much like how some wealthy humans opt to breed exotic varieties of dogs today. Obviously none of these impractical show breeds survived the Second Unmaking which is all for the best since if half the ancient accounts were true, these cat breeds were essentially non-magical Purple Chickens. With all respect to my ancestors, modern elves cannot afford to be anything but pragmatic." -Almon Genmaer, grey elf sailor
Geographic Origin and Distribution
Cats live about everywhere humans live though they are more prevailent in warmer areas than colder areas.
"Always be nice to every kitty you see, children, it might not be just a kitty." -Grandpa Valdix, elderly gnome farmerThere are a lot of spirits in the Aetherial Realm that take the form of cats. There are a lot of Sprites in Fae Home that take the form of cats. Many Fair Folk have great shape shifting powers and they can take many forms, but more than a few have a preference for cats. Some cats from other realms have obvious signs of not being an ordinary kitty, but many have subtle signs of their otherworldlyness or no such signs at all. It is also rumored that ordinary cats from the mortal plane can temporarily enter other planes of reality. It is also rumored that even "ordinary" cats bear a tiny drop of otherworldly blood.
about 15 years for an indoor cat under ideal circumstances, much less for feral cats.
9 inches tall
nine to ten pounds for well fed domesticated cats
18 inches on average, not counting the tail.