Cats in Istanbul

I have a theory on national civic development. As countries move from some Hobbsian “State of Nature” through to highly developed, there are several key regimes of treatment of stray dogs. At the worst, stray dogs are food. At the best, stray dogs are lovingly captured by local authorities assigned that responsibility by one or two other tiers of government, and transferred to custody pending adoption or execution. It is only in the middle of the spectrum that stray dogs exist in any quantities roaming free in populated areas.

So Turkey is perhaps a corollary of this theory. With scarcely a stray dog to be seen, it seems that the stray cat’s life is easy, perhaps even pampered. There are a variety of theories as to why. What I do know is that on the whole they are very cute.