5 Fun Facts About Black Cats

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Sometimes black cats get a bad rap in shelters. Many black cats are passed over by ignorant people who fear that they are bad luck. Sadly, a black cat doesn’t always photo as easily so their adoption photos don’t always shine as bright as them.

Here at Cole and Marmalade, we truly love black cats. We are here to show the world that they deserve to be treated with nothing but kindness and acceptance. Does a black cat rule your heart? Then you’ll love these 5 fun facts about black cats.

They’ve Got Their Own Special Day!

As advocates for black cats have noticed, these raven-haired felines don’t always have equal chances in comparison to other colored cats when it comes to adoption rate. And just because of this sad statistic, black cats have earned their very own special day on the calendar! In the US, every August 17th is #BlackCatAppreciationDay. According to DaysOfTheYear.com, the honorary date is meant to spread adoption awareness for black cats…

Because of superstitious beliefs in some cultures, black cats are sometimes associated with bad luck and, sadly, are more likely to be put to sleep or wait a long time to be adopted from shelters. Black Cat Appreciation Day was launched to show people that a black cat could be the perfect cat for them, and help raise awareness about black cats in general.

There Is Only One Breed of Cats That Are Exclusively Black

While a number of cat breeds can have black coats–22 to be exact–there is only one breed of cat that is exclusively black in color. The picturesque Bombay cat is characterized by a super shiny black shorthair coat of fur, black nose and whiskers, and large, saucer-like copper eyes. These striking black cats resemble a housecat-sized miniature panther. Interesting fact: Although their name is homage to the major city in India, there is no direct correlation. 

Photo Credit: Helmi Flick, Animal Photography – Vetstreet.com

In 1953, a woman in Kentucky by the name of Nikki Horner developed the breed in hopes to create a cat that resembled the exotic blank panther in the wild. The Bombay came as a result of her crossing a black American Shorthair male with rich eye color to a sable Burmese female. Through years of selective breeding, the Bombay we know today came to fruition. (If you ask me, I think rescue kitty Cole is more handsome than any fancy Bombay cat I’ve ever seen!)

Photo property of Cole and Marmalade

Black Cats Are Symbols of Good Luck in Many Cultures

Sadly, the superstitions surrounding black cats and bad luck is what people in the United States usually think of. Don’t let one cross your path! Black cats are symbols of evil or black magic! The list goes on and on, unfortunately. But in many other cultures across the globe, black cats are synonymous with good fortune–as they should be!

Here’s a list of countries that realize all the good the presence of a black cat bring…

  • Scotland – black cat appearing on your doorstep is a sign of prosperity
  • England – in the Midlands, a black cat as a wedding present is thought to bring good luck to the bride
  • France – in the south of France, black cats are referred to as ‘matagots’ or ‘magician cats’. And according to local superstition, feeding and treating them well will bring good luck to the owner.
  • Northern Europe – it is believed that taking in and caring for a black cat can ensure fair weather and safe passage during voyages on the sea
  • Asia – owning a black cat is considered lucky
  • Italy – if you hear a black cat sneeze, you are in for a streak of good luck
  • Japan – black cats are a symbol of good luck – if they see a black cat crossing their path, they say ‘Konichiwa’ and take control of their own luck

Black Cats Were Once a Sailor’s Best Mate!

It was a time when brave souls would sail the seven seas in search of new lands and wealth. So sailors from Britain and Ireland would often bring a black “ship’s cat” on board as a token of good luck on their journey. But the “luck” these cats brought on board the ship came with a purpose–as they worked to control the rat population aboard the vessel. It’s commonly known that rats are carriers of disease. So by limiting the rodent population, the ship cat helped to keep passengers at less risk of contracting often fatal diseases. Not only this, but rats can also damaged food supply and chew through important ropes and sails aboard a ship, so the less rats, the better all around! Nice work, ship cat!

The ship’s cat was a very welcomed crew member while aboard, and treated with great care and respect–sometimes even scoring the first bite when breaking bread with the crew! Another fun fact: Cats were believed to have miraculous powers that could protect ships from dangerous weather.

Photo property of Cole and Marmalade

Pretty Kitty With Mystical Peepers

Along with those magical black coats that shine like satin, black cats often have bright golden or yellow eyes to match. The reason for this comes as a result of their genetic makeup. Melanism–the opposite of Albinism–is what causes their dark coats, and in turn the high amount of melanin in their bodies gives their irises the golden and yellow hues we’ve come to admire.

Are you the proud owner of a black cat? Share your photos of them with us in the comments section on Facebook. Together we can show the world just how truly special these regal–and often extremely affectionate–can be!

Best Black Cat Videos: 


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  1. I love my black cat, his name is Teddy. I adopted him from a pet store next to our grocery store in my town. His green eyes stole my heart and been having me in his tiny paws ever since. Hes a talker and I kept his name cause he responded so well to Teddy. I have 2 females and like others they hissed and picked. Fast forward a year later all 3 get along great. Teddy is mommy’s baby boy of course, Chess is my tuxedo cat and her sister is a tabby. Love all 3 hes a great balance in the apartment of women. Even more so cause hes the baby as well .

  2. I have no strange sexual tastes or habits but, I’m sorry – – – Cole is just sexy! Can’t help myself! It astounds me every time I look at him. He just oozes virility & cool! Ah, to be a female cat instead of just an ordinary old female hooman! 😎

  3. My daughter has two blacks! They also got married on a thirteenth. So sometimes, their anniversary is a Friday the 13th. Friday the 13ths have never been bad luck for us. Funny that people still believe this stupid stuff.

  4. In England, Sunderland Association Football Club are called (nicknamed) the Black Cats.

    From time to time Sunderland’s football shirts will have an image of a black cat embroidered
    on the sleeve of their shirt.

  5. I have a beautiful black cat called Bonnie she’s the mum of my other 4 kitties. Max is a tabby, Angel and Rosalie are calicos and Meghan is a torti ❤❤❤❤❤ so not only is Bonnie beautiful but she has beautiful babies too

  6. I love my black boy his name is Koffie. Now he has a little brother named Gingy (obviously a Ginger). Most people are still superstitious about black cats. Some of my friends was a bit hesitant about Koffie but they love him so much and don’t think that he is bad luck!!

  7. Shadow wasn’t named this because he’s black. When we rescued him 17 years ago, our grandson named him Shadow, because his middle name is Shadow. When I asked why (he was 6 at the time) he said Shadow told him his name.

  8. We have 4 adult black cats. The 2 males really are miniature panthers. There is also 2 six month old black kittens, the ones we kept from 12 kittens born to our 2 females. All were black.
    We also have a tuxedo and a dark grey female. We adore our black friends. It was hilarious watching the 12 kittens rush into the kitchen to get scraps of food the adult cats left. We had to shut them away to let the others eat. It was like a tidal wave. The male kitten we kept is named Dyson because he would run by a bit of food and grab it up without stopping, just like a Dyson.

  9. I have had many cats over the years, from all white to all black, most of which have been tabby. Years ago i happened to take care of an all black male (about 20#). I named him Nomad, because he went outside when I went to work and would be waiting for me when I got home. Sadly that was for 2 weeks, I never saw him again. And about 6 years ago I happen to see some stray cats, so I put out food for them. Just so happened it was a mama kitty and her 5 kittens (all of them black). And more recently, where I live 6 cats were left behind (5 of them black with a spot of white), that was on top of the 4 i had!!! I couldn’t just kick them out. And most recently, 2 weeks ago, i took in a young female stray (all black) because where I live in NYS it is getting colder. She has turned out to be such a lovable, and cuddly kitty. And honestly, all my cats have had their own personality no matter their color or breed (I have had 2 pure bred). And yes I proudly call my black kids my mini panthers, even my 12 year old 30# Rascal.

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Written by Modi Ramos

Crazy cat lady since birth and lover of all things feline. Owner of CattitudeDaily and former Editor of iHeartCats. Meow!

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