Enter Judaism and Christianity. Also, because black cats are arguably less likely to be adopted out (perhaps due to the spooky myths that surround them), seeking a black cat when you’re in a place to adopt would be helpful. Buchan says the adoption suspension avoids having the cat in an unsafe environment. These “black cat policies” are “based on urban myths [and] put pets at higher risk than they could ever be from people who’d adopt with ill intentions,” he says. Cats have always been associated with magic, haven’t they? Black cats are harder to place in homes, Wright said, so limiting their adoption out of fear is actually more cruel than suspending adoptions for fear of cruelty. Many Medieval Germans believed themselves to be cursed if a black cat crossed their path from left to right. Yet, I — as I'm sure many others — can't help but wonder why black cats in particular are a Halloween symbol. This leads to overcrowded facilities or, in the case of no-kill shelters, puts the cats “at high risk of not being around when the ban is lifted.”. Get an instant quote now and take the first step to protect your furry best friend. For example, pet parents make sure their black cats are kept indoors, and shelters will press hold the adoption of black cats or become much more stringent in their vetting process for potential owners. Stay Home and Read One of These Great Books for Cat Lovers. The “bad luck” myth is perpetuated throughout many different cultures — especially in the West — and stems largely from beliefs held in the middle ages. Furthermore, there’s a fear that black cats are merely adopted around Halloween as a prop and then either abandoned or returned to the shelter. The county also stops black cat adoptions on any Friday the 13th. These “black cat policies” are “based on urban myths [and] put pets at higher risk than they could ever be from people who’d adopt with ill intentions,” he says. However, there is “a more subtle cruelty” that goes on this time of year, says Syufy. There’s also a belief that black cats roaming around outdoors, especially in October, are more likely to be captured and harmed. In South Florida — and in the rest of the U.S. — many animal shelters suspend black cat adoptions until after Halloween. Not everybody believes that black cats are in danger on Halloween. Black cats have long served as objects of superstition. Anyone caught with a black cat would be severely punished or even killed…When the Christians gained a foothold in America, they also propelled this myth forward during a time when witches were coming into fruition in America.”. According to urban legend site Snopes.com, “The problem — or the perception of it — follows folkloric patterns, with anecdotal reports becoming ever wider in scope.”. All descriptions or highlights of the insurance being provided are for general information purposes only, do not address state-specific notice or other requirements and do not amend, alter or modify the actual terms or conditions of an insurance policy. When people turn an adopter away that poor pet is going to have to sit and wait for someone else to come along, Wright said. Otherwise, trot your bowl of goodies outside and shut the door firmly behind you. The black cat myth of being “bad luck” has deep, historical roots and has even influenced the way that animal shelters adopt out cats around Halloween. "There is no evidence that black cats are at special risk of abuse if adopted around Halloween," says Francis Battista, cofounder of the Best Friends Animal Society. Theres really no documentation that shows any cruelty, said Stephen Wright, a spokesman for the Naples Humane Society. Throughout history, this myth has lost much of its fear-based momentum and has instead turned into mostly kitschy fun. And come Halloween, we’ll see cards and decorations featuring that vampire/devil cat or black kittens sporting witches’ hats and gazing adoringly at you. Exclusions and restrictions apply. They were gods in Egypt and sacred to the goddess Artemis in ancient Greece. However, “we screen people really well, especially around Halloween when it comes to black cats, to see if they really want a cat or just a decoration, Wright said. But other shelters choose not to suspend black cat adoptions. Plan coverage varies based on the age of the pet at enrollment and the deductible and reimbursement levels chosen at enrollment. It involves people adopting black cats as costume accessories, then returning them to the shelters or dumping them. Black cats unite! Still, the black cat has managed to catch a few breaks over the centuries. The early church was determined to stamp out all vestiges of the pagan religions. In addition to avoiding a black cat that may cross your path, others claim that satanic or cult groups specifically adopt black cats … Does Your Kitty Have What It Takes to be a Therapy Cat? However, they concluded that any evidence surrounding claims of black cat abductions and killings was inclusive. But there is a darker side to this fascination with black cats and magic. Oct 19th 2010. And in parts of France, we find the matagot (magician-cat) and the chat d’argent — “black cats who have the power to attract wealth into any house where they are loved and well fed,” according to Dr. Fernand Méry, a veterinarian and journalist. And sometimes they revenged themselves on the black cat for all the fear they had of the Devil.”. Dr. Marty Becker, DVM, scoffs at shelters that won’t adopt out black cats in October. Try creating a “haven” and putting your cats in a separate room. Share a picture of your kitty with us on Instagram by tagging #gohealthypaws. Along the way, they found numerous anecdotal tales about black cats going missing or strange scenarios surrounding adoptions. Sometimes that magic has been white, and sometimes it has been black. The History of Black Cats and Halloween. The Palm Beach, Fla., Post reported that at least three area shelters have halted adoptions of black cats before Oct. 31 due to fear that the cats will end up in the hands of sadistic people who will harm them. In the end, your best bet is bringing all of your felines inside. “There are satanic sacrificial rituals that still exist in our country and around the world,” says Karen Buchan, community projects manager for Palm Beach Animal Care and Control. Some even believed witches shape-shifted into black cats. Stay informed! First, let’s talk about why black cats have such an unfortunate, unsubstantiated rap. Aside from that “Thou shalt have no other gods before Me” proviso, the Jews weren’t about to wax wildly poetic about any animal their former enslavers had worshipped. Cat safety should be on your mind this Halloween — a day (and night) that historically sees a rise in animal cruelty. The kid next door may not be into satanic rituals, but there are a lot of cars on the road, and coyotes are also a very real danger.  |  With no evidence to show abuse was a real threat, the organization lifted its ban about 10 years ago. Throughout the Middle Ages and well into the so-called Age of Enlightenment, they were tortured and burned alive just for having fur the color of night — which was, after all, when most witchery and evil took place. He is regarded as lucky in the United Kingdom and Asia. And if you aren’t already a pet parent with us, look into getting a free quote to help safeguard not just your special fur friend, but your wallet too. “The perception of danger to black cats on Halloween has become so prevalent,” says writer Franny Syufy, “that many shelters and humane societies refuse to allow adoption of black cats during the entire month of October.”. Halloween season is an especially dangerous time for black cats, says Furkids, the largest no-kill shelter in Georgia. Still, as anyone who has ever done animal rescue work knows, some truly horrific instances of cruelty can and do occur. Somehow black cats ended up getting the worst of it. They viewed the black cat as a companion, or a familiar, to witches. “For the Christian,” observes , “the black cat was always Lucifer’s messenger. They pulled the Norse goddess Freya’s chariot. In Medieval France and Spain, black cats were considered bringers of bad luck and curses to any human they came near, and were associated with witchcraft. We pretty much think its an urban legend. Naples Humane Society used to stop adoptions on black cats until after Halloween. All rights reserved. According to Mary Anne Miller’s The Mystique Behind Black Cats, “Comprised of Englanders and Europeans, these pilgrims were a deeply suspicious group. Get tips and exclusive deals. Maybe so. Cats had a lot of clout in pre-Christian cultures. Please refer to the terms and conditions of the policy, which set forth the scope of insurance being provided and address relevant state requirements. "The only thing that such a fear-driven policy does is put more cats of every color at risk of dying in shelters due to overcrowding." A black cat crossing your path, especially at night on Halloween, is a sure sign you are doomed. As a result — and to the frustration of those who consider the whole “black cat” worry overblown — many do adjust their behavior and policies starting as early as August. Snopes says that the evidence it could gather about ritual sacrifice of cats in October is inconclusive, but “shelters’ being extra-careful with feline adoptions just before Halloween to prevent the ‘renting’ of cats for decorative purposes is a prudent precaution.”. In addition to avoiding a black cat that may cross your path, others claim that satanic or cult groups specifically adopt black cats in order to eliminate and/or sacrifice them.

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