You’ve likely heard of the myths about black cats being unlucky. This is a common superstition, and, while there’s absolutely no truth to it, it stubbornly persists. This has actually led to some real-world consequences, not just for black cats, but also for black dogs. This is known as Black Dog And Black Cat Syndrome. In this article from Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON animal clinic, a local vet shines the spotlight on this issue.
Black Dog And Black Cat Syndrome isn’t related to any health issues Fido and Fluffy may develop. It’s a term for the phenomenon that leads to black pets being ignored in shelters, and passed over for pets that are sporting different colors. This was first documented in a 2002 study in the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science. With kitties, this is often related to those old wives’ tales associating black cats with witches and witchcraft. In Fido’s case, it’s because black dogs are often seen as evil and/or intimidating. Black dogs were closely linked to the underworld in ancient mythology, and they haven’t been able to shake off those associations. It also doesn’t help that it can be hard to take good photos of black cats and dogs, particularly when they aren’t in well-lit areas.
February isn’t the only time dedicated to black dogs and cats. There’s Black Cat Appreciation Days, which take place on August 17th, as well as Black Dog Appreciation Day on October 1. October is also Black Cat Awareness Month. Some may wonder why there are so many different dates to observe the same thing, but we’re all for it. Many shelters reduce or waive adoption fees for black cats and dogs during these times. The more attention this topic gets, the better!
Spreading The Word
There is some good news here: the campaigns and awareness days seem to be helping. A study done for Lambda School (Bloom Technology) indicates that nearly 45% of black pets get adopted. We’d like to see that number reach 100%! You can help by spreading the word. Of course, adopting a black pet of your own is also a great way to make a difference. Fido and Fluffy are wonderful pets!
Do you have any questions about your pet’s health or care? Contact Armitage Animal Clinic, your Newmarket, ON animal hospital, today!