Cats have been through a lot. During the Medieval European era was a horrible time for animals like cats and dog. Religions such as, Christians etc. The pope Gregory IX declared Black cats worked with Devil and satanic orgin. Many were killed by being burned alive due to this belief.
They also believed cats assited witches and helped them with their crafts and spells, as they gifts from the Devil.
Many cats were also killer due to the time of the black death where fleas would come from rats and go onto cats/ dogs where their owners would get effected by the black death, which came from the belief cats/dogs were the caused and many were killed before they realised the real cause the black death.