Recently, we were working with our editor at Red Quill and she pointed out that “lycanthrope” means, literally, werewolf: from the Latin, and before that Greek, meaning wolf man.
It struck me by complete surprise. I mean, I know that the meaning of lycanthrope is wolf man, but somehow I just extrapolated from there to all shifters being lycanthropes or catching lycanthropy – cat lycanthropy, dog lycanthropy, etc. It doesn’t help that the genre seems to think that too, and has used lycanthropy as a catch-all term. We batted around some ideas for things like felisthropy, but it sounded too contrived and goofy.