The black cat is one of the classic symbols of Halloween. In the United States, a common superstitious belief is that crossing the path of a black cat is bad luck. In Western history, black cats were associated with witchcraft and were suspected of being “familiars” to witches. Black is a color associated with mystery, and while cats are already thought of as mysterious creatures, a black cat blending into the shadows at night may seem especially eerie. However, other cultures have different beliefs about black cats. In Great Britain and Ireland for example, black cats are considered lucky, while the Scottish believe the arrival of a black cat is a sign of future prosperity. Most everyone knows that in ancient Egypt, cats were revered.
The black coat that is a great biological adaptation to make the cat a more successful nocturnal hunter works to the cat’s disadvantage when it comes to being adopted. While people nowadays are not so superstitious, black cats are sadly still too often the last to be adopted from shelters. Many shelters limit adoption of black cats in the month of October due to fear for their safety around Halloween, which further limits their opportunities for adoption.
Of course black cats are just as affectionate and deserving of love as any other cat, and they have a unique beauty with their coal-black fur and golden eyes. The next time you’re ready to add a cat to your family, consider adopting a black cat and adding a miniature panther to your home. Remember, love knows no color.