Dying to Meet You
As the subject of feline folklore and superstition, myths about black cats abound. Whether you believe these dark-colored kitties are bad luck, you can't deny their charm and beauty. Black cats are highly mysterious creatures. The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry has written considerably regarding the cultural superstitions that surround black cats.
Until the 17th century, many cultures such as Egypt and Rome deified cats. In Egypt, the death of a cat was equated to the death of a family member.
Cats were mummified, and families wept and mourned as for a human counterpart. Things went sour for cats by the s when felines became associated with witchcraft. In fact, many households burned cats on Shrove Tuesday as a means to protect the family from natural disasters and calamitous events. In some cultures, black cats are a symbol of magic and witches. This goes all the way back to ancient Roman times when black cats were associated with the goddess of witchcraft Hecate.
Good luck omens associated with black cats include:. Black cats were also considered lucky onboard ships as not only an omen of good fortune but also for keeping the rodent population down. Black cats are not an actual breed in their own right, although many breeds can produce a black coat.
Are Black Cats Good or Bad Luck?
There are 22 breeds that can have a completely black coat and this coloring is not rare among cats. Some popular breeds that are particularly known for their black coloring and are easily found are:. One rarer cat breed, the Bombay , comes only in solid black.
Black is a very attractive color for cats. The deep single-toned black color can highlight the shine of a feline's coat. Lillian Dubois-Tercero, president and executive director of Arizona Pet Line, a non-profit lost-and-found pet service in Phoenix, said that according to her computerized records, Halloween catnapping commences as early as late August. What to make of all these claims?
FACT CHECK: Cats Sacrificed at Halloween
Contemporary news accounts are a bundle of contradictory and conflicting information. Some veterinarians, law enforcement officials, and shelter operators assert that claims of feline sacrifices at Halloween are overblown:. Leslie Sinclair, a veterinarian who is director of companion animal care for the Humane Society of the United States, said shelters across the country ban adoptions at this time of year — or at least closely scrutinize adoption applicants.
Although many shelter operators acknowledge having little or no first-hand experience with animal sacrifices on Halloween, they have long traded tales of black cats being decapitated, disemboweled or skinned to mark the holiday. Shelter operators say pet owners should keep their pets indoors at Halloween. But tales of widespread animal torture on Halloween might be more legend than real, Sinclair said. She said that society officials employed a clipping service to survey news accounts of feline carnage surrounding Halloween — and found nothing.
Michael F. Some offer accounts that border on the ridiculous to validate their belief in satanic catnappings:. Two years ago, shelter workers at the Brooklyn Animal Resource Coalition in Williamsburg were on red alert when a woman dressed as a witch came in and insisted on adopting a black cat.
We never found the body. Interviews with shelter managers and a search of regional newspapers turned up nearly a dozen reports of black cat mutilations over the past four Halloweens.
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Cat bones and body parts were found near a Teterboro, N. In Wausau, Wis. A black cat was burned alive in Doylestown, Ohio. In Sanford, Fla. Far too often, the animals are tortured and sacrificed during pseudo satanic-based rituals. The problem is magnified at Halloween time, when any unusual or unexplained animal death is automatically attributed to Halloween-related satanic activity:.
Hicks cited a series of 12 to 14 cat torture and mutilation cases last fall in the Ahwatukee Foothills, five of which were confirmed by necropsies to have been killed by humans.
Is a black cat crossing your path bad luck or good luck? The superstition explained
All were thought to be perpetrated by neighborhood teens. What evidence we could gather was inconclusive. If Halloween policies also help dissuade those who might inflict harm on adopted pets, so much the better. Apperson, Jay. An image of Raptors fans celebrating in Toronto is the latest crowd photograph to be miscaptioned for partisan purposes. An image of the all-male Freedom Caucus discussing the future of women's health care coverage sparked anger.
Social media posts have confused one woman who has accused Trump of sexual assault with another accuser. Former students at the facility have alleged harsh treatment and psychological abuse. Out of all the things a viral video might have captured, a real-life Dobby is probably the least likely. Fact Check Horrors. Misinformation is a real threat. Learn How.
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