Black cats have long been associated with good luck but animal shelters report that it can take longer to home a black moggie than many other cats. Cats Protection have established that black cats have to wait 22% longer to find new homes than their white or tabby friends. But why is that?
Are Black Cats Less Playful?
Apparently many people believe that black cats are less playful and friendly than felines with brighter coats. This is, of course, completely ridiculous as cats' personalities have absolutely nothing to do with the colour of their fur. People also seem to think that black cats are uninteresting as they are very common. This means that when potential new owners visit animal shelters they have a tendency to overlook the black cats and to head for the ginger and tortoiseshell coloured cats instead.
Cat Protection thought that something should be done about this!
National Black Cat Day
To celebrate black cats and to raise their profile, National Black Cat Day was established and took place 27 October. The wave of publicity this generated clearly had an immediate effect as there was a spike in the number of online searches for black cats and a rash of tweets with the hashtag #blackcatday. If you are looking for a new furry friend to welcome into your home, then do consider taking on a black cat. They are just as likely to possess great characters as any other cats and beauty is only fur deep anyway!
There just might be something special about black cats as there are more superstitions and old wives' tales associated with these animals than almost any other. Here's what you need to know:
- The Italians used to believe that a sick person would die if a black cat laid on their bed.
- If a funeral cortege meets a black cat, then legend has it that another member of the family will die.
- In the UK it is considered good luck if a black cat crosses your path unless you are heading for a funeral. In the USA that black cat would be considered to be bad luck.
- If you find a white hair on a black cat, then you are in for some good fortune unless you pull it out.
- In Scotland, discovering a strange black cat on a porch means that the householder is going to come into money.
- Charles I believed that his black cat was charmed and that if it did meet with misfortune then the kingdom would fall.
- Freya, the Norse goddess of love and fertility, travelled in a chariot which was pulled by two black cats.
- In medieval times it was believed that if you deliberately killed a black cat, you would be giving up your soul to the devil.
- The wives of fishermen working in hazardous waters used to believe that keeping a black cat would protect their husbands while they were away at sea.
So there you are! Black cats are special so don't overlook them the next time you are searching for a feline companion.