The Truth About Black Cats and the People Who Love Them

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Asheville’s holistic veterinarian Dr. Laurel Davis offers “Stories from a holistic vet,” the blog of a holistic vet and “animal interpreter” with a clinic in Asheville, NC. Dr. Laurel also offers intuitive animal health, vaccination and lifestyle advice for animal companions and their human friends across the USA.

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The Truth About Black Cats and The People Who Love Them!

Asheville's holistic veterinarian

Apparently, black cats need a lot of celebrating, since there are three “official” National Black Cat Days: August 17, October 27 and November 17. We choose to celebrate Black Cat Week (instead of just one day), and we honor our swarthy feline friends on the week where November 17 falls, because we like to bring up the conversation of black-cat-love after the witches and vampires of Halloween celebrations are over. After all, black cats, although filled with mystery like all felines, are lucky and fortunate friends to have year-round! 

There is a stigma and superstition surrounding black cats that I have never embraced. That they are unlucky, or ill omens, or portents of doom, is a primarily Western notion that goes back centuries, all the way to Greek mythology.

In some stories, a servant named Galinthias is turned into a black cat before joining Hecate, goddess of many things — among them witchcraft and necromancy, and so in some circles, black cats became known as an omen or servant of death. Skip to the Middle Ages when black cats became even more widely associated with black magic. In 1233, Pope Gregory XI published the “Vox in Rama” which included a vilification of black cats. In it, he claimed that black cats were the incarnation of Satan, leading to the slaughter and dwindling population of these majestic creatures. What a sad, sad fate!

Fortunately, in 2019, many of these beliefs are not widely held. Thanks to the internet, we have a broadened scope of knowledge, and so along with these dark tales of the cursed black cat we also have tales of their splendor. For instance, in many cultures worldwide, black cats are considered to be lucky! In Scottish lore, having a black cat show up at your home means that you are going to win the jackpot, and in Japan, black cats are especially lucky for single women, since owning a black cat is thought to attract potential suitors. Of course, we can’t talk about cats without mentioning ancient Egypt, where for many centuries all cats were revered, and Bastet, the goddess of cats, protection, joy, dance, music, family, and love is often depicted as a regal, black cat. 

I have always admired these creatures for their intensity, their regal demeanor, their majestic, intelligent eyes, and for their ever-wild hearts. Regardless of the superstitions surrounding them, they are stunning, loyal, and endlessly special beings.

The people who love them are lucky indeed.

How can you celebrate National Black Cat Day? Often, black cats are the last ones adopted at shelters…or they’re not adopted at all. If you can open your home to another feline companion, black cats are among the best friends you can have. And, if you already have a majestic bite-sized panther as a friend, lavish them special attention and treats. They deserve it!

Shine on,

Dr. Laurel

And here are some photos of a few of our favorite black cats and the people who love them!

Our patients…

Asheville's holistic veterinarian

Asheville's holistic veterinarian

Asheville's holistic veterinarian

Our Facebook fans…

(Thank you for posting images of your beautiful companions!)

Have a special black cat in your life? Share a photo of the two of you in the comments section below or on our Facebook page!

Asheville's holistic veterinarian

Dr. Laurel Davis is Asheville’s holistic veterinarian offering phone and Skype consultations for animal lovers everywhere.Call 828-254-2221 or order an Ask Dr. Laurel™ phone or Skype session or bring your dog or cat to her downtown Asheville, NC clinicRead more patient stories.

Get to know Dr. Laurel by reading her blog.

Do you have a story about Dr. Laurel’s dog advice or how she helped your animal companion? Please leave it in the comments below or write a Google Review.

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5 Responses to “The Truth About Black Cats and the People Who Love Them”

  1. KAYE FARMER

    I had a very pretty black cat for almost 19 years! loved her with all my heart.she wasn’t a lap cat -only when she wanted to be.But she did sleep with me.Miss her still(2015).she has visited me..lol i know…

    Reply
    • Sunvet

      It sounds like you had a very special bond with your black cat. We love that, Kay!

      Reply
  2. Lynda B

    Thank you for posting this blog, and for offering holistic pet medicine. We had a lovely tiny black feral cat find and adopt us 4 years ago, and then went on to have several litters in our garage rafters before we could catch/spay her! We kept the family, and now have 11 “meow-meows,” plus two F5 Savannah rescues (lucky 13!); 6 of her brood (the “meow-meows”) are black. Since she was feral, it took us 6 months to gain her trust and “tame” her. All but one of her babies warmed up to us – Mocha, the tortie, never did after 2 1/2 years. But she still eats with them, and will come when they come – just not when we call her, like the others do and respond to their names. My son named the black cats Salem, Jet, and Smudge (boys), and Sabrina, Midnight, and BabyKitty (females, and the Queen Dame). (I would leave photos, but do not see how to upload them here…). Anywho, we sincerely, believe in holistic medicine, for all the members of our family, and have seen first-hand how illness and injuries heal so much faster when the cats know they are safe and loved. Best of luck with your practice!

    Reply
    • Sunvet

      Lynda, Thank you for sharing this testimony with us. We are happy that you have had success with alternative therapies and that holistic veterinary care has enriched the life of you and your animals!

      Reply
  3. Elic

    I went looking for a black cat as my first cat. I got her in 1976. I currently have 3 black girls, a 16 lady who is beginning to show her age, a 9 year old feral in the house with her classic tabby sister and a year and a half old girl we got as a playmate for the solid grey bottle baby who is about 2 weeks younger than she is. I love all cats, but I have to say that the black ones hold a special place in my heart.

    Reply

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