One day, Bob the everyman wakes up in the morning and goes down to feed his 3 cats, only to find that they have transformed into cat-like people. Essentially they have cat ears and tails, and their hair (inc. body hair) is coloured and patterned like that of the cat they had before. They also have the same cat-like eyes as they had before. Finally, they have much thicker hair across their body than humans tend to get - maybe twice as thick (which still isn't thick, but is a noticeable difference).

However, these cat-people still act mostly like cats. They cannot communicate except in mewling noises, tend to walk on all fours, and mooch around the house just like a domestic cat. They do have slightly improved intelligence - they can now open doors by standing upright and pulling the handle, they will open cupboards to get their food out, and (imagination stretch yes, but this isn't in the scope of the question) use the toilet rather than a litter. (They also avoid... intimacy... in public.)

After ringing the RSPCA, Bob finds that this strange and sudden transformation has affected approx. 1/3 of the world's domestic cats.

Most of these nekomimi act pretty much just like cats, except one. This one nekomimi has intelligence about equal to an average human, and physical ability about equal to a well-trained and athletic human.

Would one nekomimi alone be able to take control of her species from the humans who (in their view) enslaved their people?

  • $\begingroup$ Humans are a diverse and complex bunch. Asking how humans would respond to an event is a very broad question, and will probably be closed as such. $\endgroup$ – sphennings Aug 22 '17 at 18:55
  • $\begingroup$ @sphennings I'm asking about a particular aspect of the human reaction rather than about everything humans are going to do in response. Hopefully that'll be enough to keep it open. $\endgroup$ – C. R. Yasuo Aug 22 '17 at 19:03
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    $\begingroup$ If they are human sized, 150 million animals in the world just got ten times bigger. There will be some serious fights over food in some neighborhoods. And a lot of injured owners. If a dog bits someone, we "put it to sleep". But cats are still aggresive, predators. My cat wounds me every day and I find it cute because he's playing and he makes a funny face when he bites me. If he weighed 120 pounds and bit me, I'd need to hit him with all my strength. $\endgroup$ – Alberto Yagos Aug 22 '17 at 19:35
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    $\begingroup$ Every government would respond in a different way depending on local culture. Anything from designating them a food animal to full human rights is possible. $\endgroup$ – Separatrix Aug 23 '17 at 11:20
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    $\begingroup$ There are many governments. Each will respond differently. Instead of asking "How will people react?" you are asking "How will groups of people react?". This is still too broad and opinion based. $\endgroup$ – sphennings Aug 23 '17 at 11:33

If this happened I would quickly buy as many cats as I could before the price goes up. I would probably get a weird nickname but I would be filthy rich.

The seeming lack of intelligence would hurt the fight for their legal "human" status. Not to mention it would take forever to actually pass that type of legislation. In the meantime, you end up with a bunch of exotic humanoids that are not protected by laws, are mostly unregistered, and somewhat distanced from traditional moral hangups (not human but not an animal).

In effect, the perfect sex slave. Their price would quickly rise as people realized their value.

Some would still treat them like pets, but the end result would be either they are people or they are a hybrid pet / slave, maybe the definition of pet evolves. The very fact that their new size and appearance makes them potential bed partners would sabotage the ability to view them as pets. Based off of their description, I highly doubt these nekos would be able to organize, and I doubt they would concern themselves with their legal status. It seems too un-catlike.

It would also raise all sorts of questions based off of their ability to breed. Can a neko girl breed with a cat? Can two nekos breed? Can a human and a neko have a child and if so what would the result be? The answers to these questions would either accelerate the slavery process or end up with them being hunted as abominations in certain countries.

This topic has been explored via science fiction (ie aliens), fantasy (demi-humans), and erotica (usually lycans or monster girls) a lot. There is a lot of material out there, from the exploration of the unknown to the question of what makes us human and ending in the titillation of the erotic fantasy.

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    $\begingroup$ Why am I not surprised that the answer is "lewd the catgirls". Why am I not the least bit surprised. $\endgroup$ – F1Krazy Aug 23 '17 at 8:07
  • $\begingroup$ I had thought of this, but was hopeful that something else could come of it. Ah well. Maybe I am far too optimistic about humanity. (Android takeover time!) $\endgroup$ – C. R. Yasuo Aug 23 '17 at 8:55
  • $\begingroup$ @F1Krazy Whether you like the outcome or not, I think this is what would really happen. Their lack of intelligence, the mental gymnastics someone can use (it is not rape if it is not human, and it is not an animal so it is not bestiality), and the ease of it happening. An unregistered and difficult to track population of humanoids would just be difficult for the government to properly protect, and that is assuming they want to. Laws are slow, and the unhumanness of nekos would cause a push back. Could totally see this being spun as a positive for humanity, less sex crimes, feminism, etc. $\endgroup$ – user2259716 Aug 23 '17 at 14:46
  • $\begingroup$ @Calllack Humans like to think they are so much more enlightened than past humans. That is bullshit. Slavery doesn't make a lot of economic sense in much of the western world, especially when you can have virtual slaves through breaking laws (minimum wage, hour tweaking, immigrants, etc). Most of what are now considered slaves (chattel) are sex slaves. "Progress" is driven by a combination of economics, morals, and danger. Morals being the weakest. Tweak the economics or danger and slaves would be common today. Nekos simply cannot defend themselves, so there is little danger for "perverts." $\endgroup$ – user2259716 Aug 23 '17 at 14:56
  • $\begingroup$ They got to be trained a lot, otherwise "cat-girl sexual fantasy" would have to be restricted to "chained cat-girl sexual fantasy". $\endgroup$ – Alexander Aug 23 '17 at 18:37

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