Doggone Orlando

News, views and reviews for Orlando pet parents from the mom of a menagerie of cats, dogs, birds, horses, fish, and guinea pigs who stays just one step ahead of the "Animal Hoarders" TV crew

Black cats and Halloween: A perfect combination

I’ve never subscribed to that silly myth that black cats are unlucky. Heck, my black cat SheiKra is one of the luckiest animals I know. He was tossed out of a car on I-4 in Tampa, and he not only managed to make it to the shoulder, but I somehow managed to catch the mangy little kitten and bring him home to a life of luxury.

SheiKra was my first solid black cat, although I’ve always had a fondness for tuxedos and have owned a few over the years. I guess it was just a matter of time before I welcomed a black cat into my home, since Halloween is my favorite time of the year. I was born in October, so Halloween is the first holiday I ever celebrated, and it came up when I was only a few days old. Add in a family obsessed with horror movies and it’s pretty much inevitable that Halloween became my favorite holiday.

temp5I’m lucky to live in Orlando, as Halloween celebrations start in early September and run all the way to October 31 and sometimes even into the early days of November. This year, Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party starts on September 15, followed on the 18th by Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Florida. The latter runs all the way through November 1 this year.

I cover the theme park Halloween events for my other blog, In the Shadow of the Mouse, and for my Examiner theme parks column, which means that interesting items sometimes show up in my mailbox when the Halloween season rolls around and the holiday events are getting ready to start their run.

This year, I noticed that my cats were attracted to a package that arrived from Universal Orlando Resort. Jack the Clown is the Halloween Horror Nights icon this year, and apparently he doesn’t like intruders. As you can see in the photo, my cat Stitch was quite interesting in my “handy” invitation to the Halloween Horror Nights media event.

temp9Over the years I’ve received a number of interesting Halloween items from Universal and from Busch Gardens Tampa for Howl-O-Scream. They all have their own special shelf in my house, and if you look closely at the bottom shelf, you’ll notice that black cat SheiKra likes hanging down nearby (Farquaad is there, too, even though he’s not the traditional Halloween color).

Speaking of black cats, you’ve probably heard the myth that they’re the least likely to be adopted at shelters. I’m a huge proponent of animal adoption, and all my cats and dog are from shelters or right from the street. I did a little research and discovered that the black cat adoption story is not exactly accurate; rather than black cats being the last to be adopted, they’re the cat color with the highest euthanasia rate, according to Vetstreet. Sadly, this is because they make up the highest number of cats in shelters overall. On the plus side, this means they have high adoption numbers because of their sheer volume, but they still get put down for lack of homes at a high rate.

Whether or not you love Halloween like I do, I recommend considering a black cat the next time you adopt a pet. Of course, a cat of any color will be grateful for a good home. Just be sure to adopt, not shop, no matter what color you choose.

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