What is National Black Cat Day?
National Black Cat Day was created by Cats Protection in 2011 to help celebrate the beauty of black cats. Black cats have always had a bad rep. From being a symbol of misfortune to their connection with witches, they really haven’t had it easy.
When National Black Cat Day was launched, statistics showed that it took seven days longer for black (or black and white cats) to find a home. You’ll be pleased to know that this number isn’t as severe today, although the stigma around black cats is still there.
Good luck or bad luck?
One of the oldest and most persistent superstitions out there is that black cats bring bad luck. But where does this myth come from?
The relationship between cats and humans is one that can be seen throughout history. Cats were even present in some of the first civilizations on Earth – like Ancient Egypt, where cats were considered to be divine gods.
But things took a turn for the worst in the thirteenth century, when Pope Gregory IX proclaimed black cats as, “an incarnation of Satan”, according to Layla Morgan Wilde, author of Black Cats Tell: True Tales And Inspiring Images. This began the downward spiral of the black cat’s reputation, with reports of their demonisation spreading across Europe before heading west to America.
From Salem in Sabrina the Teenage Witch to Thackery Binx in Hocus Pocus, black cats have always been associated with witches. But why?
It all began with the Christian church’s persecution of witches across Europe. Back in the day, ‘witches’ had a deep connection with the natural world – and specifically with animals. This association then started to be seen as ‘devilish’. This belief was so strong that it’s lasted until this very day and has had a huge impact on western culture. It’s even where the infamous cliché of the old lady and her hoard of cats comes from!
It’s not all bad though…
In many cultures, the black cat carries a unique status to be revered. In the eastern world – particularly in places like Japan, as well as here in the UK – the black cat is seen as a sign of good fortune and prosperity.
- In Japan, if your path crosses with a black cat, it’s actually a good omen. It’s believed that a black cat will ward off evil spirits.
- In Scotland, if a black cat appears on your doorstep, good luck will be coming your way
- According to fishing folklore, a black kitten aboard the ship is said to calm the sea and the wind
- And in England, if a black cat visits your hotel or B&B, you should welcome them with open arms, as they’ll bring lots of customers with them!
How you can help the lowly black cat
Although satanic fears around black cats have subsided in the western world, the black cat has been left with a damaged status. Here’s a few things you can do to lift their spirits on National Black Cat Day (and have a little fun doing it):
Show off your black cat on Instagram
If you’re lucky enough to already own a black cat, today is the day to show them off all over social media. Use the hashtag #NationalBlackCatDay alongside their photo!
Watch a show or movie that stars a black cat
In pop culture, some of the most famous cats are black. To celebrate, cosy up on your sofa under a blanket and watch some of the most iconic cats in TV and movie history. As well as Hocus Pocus and Sabrina the Teenage Witch (mentioned above), there’s Snowball II from The Simpsons, Sylvester from Looney Tunes or Mr Mistoffelees from Cats!
Adopt a black cat
If you've recently been thinking about adopting a cat, then why not a black one? National Black Cat Day is the perfect day to head to your local animal shelter and bring home a black-furred friend.
Why YuMOVE loves black cats
1. Black can be lucky, too
The myth that black cats bring bad luck, is just that – a myth. And as we said before, in some countries, owning or seeing a black cat is likely to bring you good fortune. So, let’s just focus on the positives.
2. They’re chic
As the saying goes, black cats are the new black. And we all know that pet fur can be a nuisance. But if you already happen to own dark furniture, then the fur just won’t show up. We’re just saying…
3. We love Halloween
The black cat – along with their witchy counterpart – has become an iconic symbol for all things spooky, especially Halloween. And at YuMOVE, we love Halloween. In fact, we’re even running a Halloween promotion, save 30% on any product with code: TREAT30.
4. They’re adorable!
Forgetting their bad rep, black cats are just as cute as other cats! If you’ve ever spent any time with a black cat, you’ll know that their dark fur really makes their eyes shine.