Happy hump day, friends! Today I’m talking about a subject close to my heart – cats!
National Black Cat Day is actually tomorrow – 30 October. It’s a celebration of black and monochrome cats which was started to raise awareness of the fact that, in rescue centres, black and monochrome cats are sadly overlooked and left without loving homes in favour of other colours of cats. They’re less than half as likely to be adopted as other cats – and when you consider that rescue centres are currently overflowing with kittens, black cats are even worse off.
In 2010, I adopted Marty and Milo with my now husband. They were black and white (tuxedo) kittens and I knew I wanted black and white cats, and wanted to experience having kittens, even though there are so many older cats that need homes. Marty tragically died suddenly in December last year, and this summer, we adopted two kittens to keep his brother company (and bring some light and fun back into our lives!).
Meet Bella (nickname Blackie) and Brownie (like the chocolate… )! We intentionally went for cats that would be difficult for the centre that we got them from (Cats Nottingham Rescue) to adopt out – Bella is completely black as night, but she photographs just fine most of the time as you can see! Brownie is a brindle tortie with distinctive markings which come out really well in natural light.
Rescue centres struggle to get even dark coloured kittens adopted, so you can imagine how adult cats fare. So why are darker cats rejected? There’s a whole raft of reasons, ranging from superstitions about them being evil, to being difficult to take pictures of, to simply being less pretty than other kitties. Interestingly, brown cats actually fare even worse than black cats.
So, what can you do to help?
Consider adopting a black or monochrome cat
Or even go to a shelter and ask to see the animal who’s been there the longest. Chances are they deserve a loving home too, even if they’ve been overlooked for a long time.
Donate to a cat rescue organisation
How about Cats Protection, or Cats Nottingham Rescue, who we adopted our kittens from? They’re an independent rescue centre run by volunteers who simply love and want to help cats. They completely rely on donations of money and food to help them operate, so please consider donating.
Get your pet neutered or spayed
This is SO so important. There is absolutely no reason not to get your pets neutered or spayed. The current crisis that animal rescue centres are facing, which has led to some even turning cats and kittens away, is entirely a result of careless or ignorant people failing to ensure that their cats don’t have or father kittens. Cats can get pregnant from 4 months old, even though they’re still so teeny tiny! They shouldn’t be going outside at that age anyway, and can be spayed or neutered promptly at 6 months old.
Do you have cats?