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Let’s Celebrate Black Cats: #NationalBlackCatDay

Madame Puzzles, an affectionate black cat with striking green eyes, was just five years old when she leaped from the tallest tower in our Kitty City area and onto Aaron’s lap as if to say, “Pick me, pick me!” 

Aaron and his wife, Maureen, were at the Humane Society of Utah that day specifically to adopt a black-colored cat despite the centuries-old superstitions surrounding them. 

“Growing up, I was aware that black cats were considered to bring bad luck and were often associated with witchcraft. I was afraid of them,” explained Maureen. “Then, I met Aaron’s black cat, Yoshi, and he was so loving. He would sleep next to me when I would visit, and I started to see them in a different light.”

After Yoshi passed away, Aaron and Maureen adopted Madame Puzzles just one year into their marriage, and she’s been an important member of their family for five years now. 

“She’s so affectionate and hilarious! She loves BBQ’d brisket and goldfish crackers. And she seems to think she’s a guard dog because she’ll sit outside our daughter’s bedroom door at night like she’s keeping watch over her. She’s as loyal as they come, so don’t let those old notions prevent you from adopting a black cat.”

Unfortunately, not everyone agrees. Black cats often get a bad rap from issues steeped in superstition. During Medieval times when people believed they were accomplices of witches or witches themselves who had shapeshifted to do evil acts. Nowadays, people worry about the safety of black cats during October and believe they shouldn’t be made available for adoption. It’s a misconception that shelters shouldn’t adopt black cats around Halloween time. We’ve run black cat promotions in the past years during Halloween to help bust this myth and celebrate the black cat! According to national animal welfare organizations, there is no evidence that adopting black cats around Halloween poses any greater risk to felines than adopting at any other time of the year.

“It’s time for us to come together to help repair the black cat’s reputation so we can increase their chances of living long, healthy lives and finding loving homes,” said Shannon Egan, Utah Humane Society’s Communication and Corporate Giving Manager. “This should be easy to do considering the ideas and fears surrounding the demonic potential of witches have subsided significantly since the 14th century. Why should the black cat continue to suffer as a result of these ancient and misguided beliefs? Enough is enough.” 

Luckily, in 2011, the ‘National Black Cat Day’ holiday was established to help shift the narrative. This holiday is held every year on Oct 27th, just three days before Halloween. Its purpose is to create an opportunity for black cat supporters and enthusiasts to showcase these cat’s positive qualities, help aid in their adoption, and eliminate the harmful stigmas surrounding them.  

You too can help by adopting a black cat from your local shelter or educating your loved ones about these issues.  If you happen to be a guardian of a black cat, you can show your support by sharing your gorgeous cat on social media and using the #NationalBlackCatDay hashtag. This is a great way to remind people that black cats make great pets and deserve all the good luck and fortune in the world.

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