Black cats get a bad rap. Some regard black cats as sinister and symbols of evil, witchcraft, and bad luck. When Halloween rolls around, black cats are even more maligned because of peoples’ deep-rooted misconceptions and misguided superstitions about them.
It doesn’t help negate such attitudes when you see Halloween décor depicting devilish-looking black cats or cats in dark partnerships with witches, which only seems to reinforce these unfair prejudices. With so many people under the influence of such negative perceptions, it’s no surprise then that black cats have the lowest adoption rate and the highest euthanasia rate in animal shelters across the nation. They are typically the last to find forever homes, and some never even make it out of the shelter.
If you put aside the superstitions and supernatural lore that have been unfairly attached to the black cat, you end up with just a cat with a coat of a different color. What does the color of hair really matter at the end of the day? These felines are still lovable, cuddly, desperate for attention, and capable of integrating easily in any home no matter the dynamics.
If you’ve been weighing whether to rescue a cat, Halloween is a good time to adopt. Need a few good reasons to pick out a black cat? Let us dispel some of the myths and help you provide a black kitty with a forever home.
They can improve your love life! In other parts of the world, black cats are believed to improve a woman’s love life. In Japan, if a single woman owns a black cat, she’s likely to attract more suitors. And in Great Britain, black cats are given as a wedding gift as a gesture of prosperity and good fortune. Bring one home and you’ll discover how easy it is to fall in love with your new furry friend.
They are symbols of good fortune! Across the big pond, black cats are considered good luck, not bad luck. British sailors welcomed black cats on board to not only keep down the mice population but to serve as a token for a safe return to port. Welcome a black cat into your home and you’ll find yourself feeling lucky to have this cuddly bundle of fur.
They can effectively fight disease! Black cats have strong immune systems. Researchers at the National Institutes of Health found that the gene that causes cats to have black fur may offer protection against diseases, making these cats more fortunate than their colorful cousins. Nice to know you’ll be cohabitating with a valiant warrior.
They are highly affectionate, energetic, and loving! Black cats are playful, vocal, and companionable. They are highly perceptive and can sense when you’re having a bad day or leaving for a vacation. Black cat breeds enjoy playing fetch and tag and are acutely responsive to their surroundings. What’s not to love about these intelligent and amazing little guys!
Halloween makes a fitting time to adopt a black cat. The holiday is fun and magical, much like the behavior of these feline friends. You can even honor the holiday and your new member of the family by naming her after something associated with Halloween.
To find the perfect name for your kitty, observe him or her for interesting or quirky personality traits. Does your new cat like to sneak around at night and scare the living daylights out of you? Then “Spooky” or “Midnight” might be a good name for your cat. Other great Halloween names to consider, depending on how your cat behaves, include Ghost, Jack, Franky, Smokey, and Stitches.
We would be remiss if we didn’t also include some reminders about how to keep your new kitty safe during the holiday, which can be a stressful experience and equally as dangerous for your new buddy.
Fireworks and scary music can frighten your kitty into running away or darting into a busy street. Keep your cat safe indoors during this time and provide her with a quiet environment until after the festivities have ended.
The flickering light of a burning candle can be attractive to a curious kitty. Minimize their risk of being burnt or of knocking over a burning candle by using non-flameless or electric candles in your jack-o-lanterns.
Kids love to fiddle with glow sticks or decorate their wrists and costumes with them. Just like kids, cats are also intrigued by these vibrantly colorful accessories and could easily bite through one of them. The liquid has a highly unpleasant taste and can cause your cat to froth and foam at the mouth, become hyperactive, and show aggression. If your cat displays such behavior after puncturing one, use milk, tuna juice, or another liquid to dilute the chemical and provide your cat with a more pleasurable taste. Wash your cat’s fur with water if any liquid spills onto his coat.
Keep Halloween decorations well out of reach of your black cat. Decorations with strings can prove harmful to your cat if ingested.
Chocolate is a popular treat in your kid’s trick-or-treat bags. While safe for humans, chocolate contains a compound called theobromine, which is highly toxic to animals. Even a small amount can cause poisoning, which often shows up as vomiting, diarrhea, and hyperactivity. Keep chocolate shut away from your cat's curious paws.
Are you the parent of a black cat? What do you call your little buddy and how did he get his name?