Pet cats and mankind have been moving into harmony for many years but that has not always been the case. There were times when pet cats have been almost wiped out in the name of God. And what happened the Black Death reigned supreme for a lot longer than it will. So we will go back to the origins of recorded history to the time of the pharaohs of Egypt. Here felines were revered as Gods and many were mummified to previous for eternity. Because the pet cats guarded the grain warehouses and killed the rats and mice that given on the grain. Therefore minimizing famines, which were the curse of Egypt. It was illegal to eliminate cats in those times, like cows in India today.
I think one of the reason why there were not many cats around is because they used to consume them. And once in a while the restaurant kitten catches would pick up an pet cat they may find and take them back to the restaurant. I remember seeing cats in glass exhibits out the front of the restaurants. But somewhere between then and now they suspended eating pet cats. So cats are actually not on the menu and now there are cats everywhere. Most of them started off in someone's house and got thrown away, because so many are very friendly. Also they may have this thing about tummy worms. And in those days China was not as modern as now so belly worms is a problem. Fleas are not a really problem because they may have tile flooring surfaces and wooden furniture.