Is a black cat staring at you sending dire luck and omens your way? Chances are he just wants some food, water, and some cuddles. As Halloween approaches, the Heritage Humane Society is helping the animal most associated with the holiday emerge from the shadows of tradition, the practice of trickery, or simply hocus pocus.
Stealth return to the Middle Ages
Black cats can represent mystery and secrecy to some who associate it with evil. For those intrigued by mystery, magic, and the arts, they may be drawn to the lure of black cats.
Dating back to ancient Greece, according to Greek mythology, Zeus’ wife Hera once transformed her servant, Galinthias, into a black cat as punishment for preventing the birth of Hercules. Galinthias became the assistant of Hecate, the goddess of sorcery. Since then, black cats have been associated with evil.
Over the years, black cats have continued to be associated with evil and empower witches. When the Pilgrims arrived in the New World, part of their devout beliefs was to rid their surroundings of perceived evil to include killing black cats.
In Western cultures, some people still adhere to black cat superstitions, although this continues to decline. In Germany, if there is a belief that if a black cat crosses the path of a right-left person was a bad omen, there is also a belief that a black cat crossing the path of a left-hand person on the right grants favorable moments. In Japan, black cats are valued for warding off evil and leading to wealth and prosperity. In France, it is believed that black cats will lead to treasure. In England, it was believed that keeping a black cat at home would protect a sailor at sea.
Unlock the mysteries
Today, people are uncovering other mysteries of black cats that even contribute to human health. Researchers from the National Institutes of Health have found that the gene mutations associated with the coat of black cats are the same mutation in humans that causes complete resistance to HIV. This discovery helps researchers in their search for a cure for HIV.
As the future looks brighter for these adorable, upbeat onyxes, people are now celebrating National Black Cat Day, which is approaching on October 27.
Meet these mystical beauties
The Heritage Humane Society and its kind friends at Schwartzy’s Cat Cove located at The Nautical Dog in New Town have the following raven beauties available for adoption. Adoption is first come, first served. If you visit Schwartzy’s Cat Cove, be sure to say “hello” to one of their two boutique cats, a black beauty named Ollie!
Meet Bonfire. This 2-year-old male cat was found wandering around Busch Gardens. Bonfire is a little shy, but give him a comfy bed and a window to watch the birds and he’ll be in heaven.
Meet Jason. A one-year-old male who was donated to the Heritage Humane Society. This shy guy is learning to trust humans. It’s best to take it easy with him and reach out your hand, he’ll feel it before slowly snuggling into it. When he trusts you, he will greet you with the sweetest, sweetest “meow.” He will need a patient adopter who understands that a slow transition will be best for him.
Meet Loki. A 10-year-old girl who was released into the care of the shelter. Loki is currently in a foster home. Here are some words from her adoptive mother: “She is so adorable. She immediately integrated into the apartment with my roommates! She is very outgoing and affectionate and snuggles right next to me when I lay down.
Meet Morticia. She’s a one-year-old cat who came stray with a litter of kittens. She gave her kittens so much love and made sure they grew up strong and healthy. Her kittens (Wednesday, Gomez and Thing) have all found loving homes, and now it’s Morticia’s turn to be loved and darling is a forever home.
Spread some magic
If adopting a black cat isn’t an option right now, consider sponsoring other adoption costs so they can find their forever home. If interested, email or call the Heritage Humane Society adoption team at [email protected] or 757-221-0150 ext.0. Donate online, donate needed items or purchase items from the shelter’s on-site retail store, or join the Heritage Humane Society host community.
To learn more, visit HeritageHumane.org or call 757-221-0150. Heritage Humane Society is located at 430 Waller Mill Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185. Schwartzy’s Cat Cove is located in Nautical Dog at 5102 Main St. Suite B, Williamsburg, VA 23188.
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