Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Black Cats Need a Stroke of Luck

A black cat dressed up for the holiday. August 17 is
Black Cat Day.
So often a symbol of misfortune or a superstitious sign of imminent death, black cats themselves have something of a historic case of bad luck.

For a while, things went pretty well for black cats. In ancient Egypt, they were regarded as nearly divine, and it was considered a privilege to share a home with one. Later, everyone from sailors to monarchs seemed to favor black cats in much of the world. They were a sign of luck.

Somewhere along the way, however, fortunes changed. People began to associate black cats with witches, devils, dark magic, and all manner of disreputable subjects often linked to the darker end of the color spectrum. As a result, black cats were murdered, reviled, and burned into public memory as an omen of bad things to come.

Bumble Bee enjoys lounging during work hours.
Whether people relate them to evil or rotten luck, black cats have continued to face the stigma of their unfortunate associations even today. Rescuers consistently say that black cats (and black dogs) find fewer homes than their fairer-skinned counterparts.
Maybe it's superstition or maybe it could just be that their dark coats don’t lend themselves well to the photographs adoption agencies typically use.

Chance circumstances have lead black cats their poor reputation in the western world, but many countries and cultures (including much of Asia and Eastern Europe) actually consider them to bring good luck. Their connection to misfortune is so arbitrary, in fact, that some consider it to alternate between good or bad luck depending on whether a black cat crosses you from the right or the left.

As cats’ coat color has little to nothing to do with breed or personality, black cats are the same as any other cat. (Well not really, black cats are actually cooler than other cats.) They all need love and good homes! So August 17th was declared "Black Cat Day" to celebrate these too-often-maligned felines. Next time you are looking to adopt, consider giving a black cat a lucky break. Chances are, your fortunes will only change for the better. To meet some of our black cats, please click here.

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