Kitty Post October 2020: Beware Black Cats, It’s Halloween! By Sallie Rhodes
October! Just the word conjures thoughts of cooler weather, ominous skies, falling leaves, and Halloween (or Samhain if you still follow the old ways.) With the old ways, come old beliefs.
One of the single biggest myths around during this time of year is that of the dreaded “Black Cat”. Some people believe these creatures are familiars for witches and minions for the Devil. While the origin of this myth is unknown, it’s been around for at least two hundred years. To this day, people fear the idea of a black cat crossing their path. Unfortunately, this fear has led to the horrible mistreatment of an animal that was born the wrong color.
If you own a black cat, take precautions. If your cat is an indoor/outdoor pet, make sure they are microchipped and wearing a bright, reflective collar with tags containing current owner information. Do your best to keep your black cat inside on Halloween. Human fears are not always rational, and the abuse and often death of black cats rises during this “holiday”.
If you see an unknown black cat wandering your area, contact Beltsville Community Cats (BCC) at 240.444.8353 or firstname.lastname@example.org. A BCC volunteer will check the situation out and develop a plan to humanely trap the cat and transport it to a vet to get spayed or neutered and vaccinated. Adult cats and older kittens are returned to where they were trapped to live out their lives without reproducing. Kittens 8 weeks old and younger are removed and placed in foster care until a forever home can be found. Remember; a black cat is NO different from any other color of cats! They just have the misfortune of a few centuries of human fears and misconceptions that can complicate their lives.