Very Superstitious: 9 Fun Facts About Black Cats

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Very Superstitious: 9 Fun Facts About Black Cats

Black cats are a familiar sight around Halloween. Typically depicted with their backs arched and their piercing eyes glowing, they're as much a part of this spooky holiday as jack-o'-lanterns, trick-or-treating, costumes, superstitions and creatures that go bump in the night. But, how much do you really know about these fantastic felines? Notoriously enigmatic and independent-minded, cats don't explain themselves. Here are nine fun facts about black cats to help you understand them a little better.

1. Bewitching Felines
When a witch is pictured, a black cat often slinks around her feet. This association can be traced back to the Middle Ages when fear of witchcraft wreaked havoc in Europe. Many of the older women who were targeted as witches had feline companions. Eventually, people decided that these pets were actually co-conspirators, and black cats earned the dubious distinction of being the animal most likely to be named a witch's familiar.

2. Lucky Stars
When fortune smiles on someone, we often call them a lucky dog. Black cats take it one step farther in the luck stakes; they're embraced as the bearers of good luck in several cultures. In Japan, Australia, England, Ireland, Scotland and France, black cats are welcome additions to a household because of the good luck they're believed to bring.

3. Parlor Panthers
The Bombay, a purebred cat created to be a "parlor panther," is the only recognized breed of cat that can only be black in color. While all Bombays are black, not all black cats are Bombays. More than 20 other cat breeds list black as an acceptable color, and lots of domestic shorthairs and domestic longhairs have beautiful ebony coats.

4. Attractive Pets
In Japan, black cats are often given to single women who hope to marry. According to long-held superstitions, black cats can help attract potential suitors. In Scotland, people hope their home attracts black cats. There, legend says that when a stray black cat graces your porch, prosperity is sure to follow.

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5. Furry Heirs
The Scots may be onto something regarding black cats and potential wealth. At least two black cats inherited multi-million dollar fortunes from their owners. If cats concerned themselves with financial things, neither Tommaso, a former stray in Italy, or Blackie, a lucky feline in the United Kingdom, would have anything to worry about.

6. Smooth Sailing
Sailors are known to be superstitious folks, so it's no surprise that they consider black cats a sign of things to come. Fishermen appreciate a black cat because it brings good luck. Some even credit these felines with protective powers.

7. Royal Connections
According to legend, England's King Charles I had a much-loved black cat that he thought brought him good luck. The day after the pampered puss died from an illness, the king was arrested. He was later beheaded.

8. Medical Marvels
Scientists suspect that melanism, the condition that results in a black cat's ebony fur and golden eyes, offers immunological benefits that protect their health and allow these felines to better resist certain pathogens. Researchers believe that studying melanism and its effects could lead to a better understanding of -- and possible cure for -- cancer.

9. Daily Dues
Did you know that black cats have their own day? August 17 is Black Cat Appreciation Day. Launched in 2011 as part of a Facebook campaign, this holiday raise awareness of black cats and the issues they can face in finding forever homes.

What will you do when a black cat crosses your path? Hopefully, you'll smile and say hello. While some people associate black cats with bad luck, owners of these fantastic felines often attest that they feel fortunate to share their lives with these critters, insisting that black cats make fabulous companions and great pets.

About the author: Sonny Choun is part of our Marketing Team here at Pivot Insurance. He enjoys playing outdoor sports, bowling with friends, and spending time with family. His talent and expertise are a reflection of the Pivot culture. He believes life insurance is an essential part of a family's financial security. Sonny can be contacted at 1-800-651-1953 or

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