I got thinking about this after rereading the PETA and pets node.

Could it actually be an evolutionary advantage for a species to be domesticated, or for it to be easy for them to be? After all, from an evolutionary standpoint, isn't the point of life to reproduce and spread the genes? And whatever in the environment affects the success rate of this part of what deteremines how well they're adapted?

To put it this way, an animal species that is domesticated by humans will have a greater chance of reproduction and success. Look at dogs, cats, cows, horses. All useful in various ways, and all very successful as to the number of them, and variety, in comparison to a wild species. By proving useful to people, they get protected, taken care of, and helped to reproduce.

PETA complains about pets as if it's a horrible thing we're doing to them. But what's wrong with an animal being readily able to adapt to live amongs human society and interacting with them? Shouldn't we be saying, "wow, what a great example of evolution and adaption?" Am I forcing my cats to live with me against their will? Or are my cats just another example of incredible success at evolving, having reached a point where they can convince another species to care for their every need?

They've learned how to control me more than I've learned how to control them. Why penalize them for following the rules of natural selection, just not in the way some people consider "natural"??

Is there a difference between evolution and design? Most specifically I ask this about breeding for certain characteristics. We're not talking re-writing DNA here, just that people are choosing what traits determine the reproductive fitness - just not thinking of it that way.

Does evolution stop being evolution because the forces that determine success change from what allows them to survive better in the wild to what makes them more desirable for another species? It's still being determined by an outside force. It's not the process that's really any different, just the rules for success.