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16th century guinea pig remains found in Belgium

The remains of guinea pigs have been found in Belgium, suggesting that the furry little creatures may have become fashionable pets after the Spanish conquest of Peru in 1532. The third-ever guinea pig skeleton found in a European archaeological dig confirms that these little squeakers voyaged to the Old World very

Earliest evidence of a pet tortoise

Researchers have found the earliest evidence of a pet tortoise at a castle in Staffordshire. There has been evidence of turtles and terrapins in domestic situations dating back to the 17th Century - but it was believed that these animals were used for food. The discovery of a 130-year-old tortoise

Prehistoric dog burial found in Orange County

A 1,800-year-old dog burial has been unearthed in Orange County, California. The dog was a techichi, or "small Indian dog," of a type that was about the size of a terrier and that is now extinct. But the scientists involved in the discovery know little else, including why it was

The History of the House Cat

Recent genetic and archaeological findings show that wildcats may have become house cats earlier, and in a different place, than previously thought. It is by turns aloof and affectionate, serene and savage, endearing and exasperating. Despite its mercurial nature, however, the house cat is the most popular pet in the world.