Tuesday 9 August 2022

"Cat of the Month", Flint, has been at Battersea for 5 months because he's black

Flint, a black domestic shorthaired cat, has been at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home for about five months. He's been described as having a playful and bouncy character. He is extremely affectionate and loves to be on a person's lap in the evening. His character is so good that he was awarded "Cat of the Month" by the shelter. He's also been described as "one of the bravest and loveliest chaps" by shelter staff.

Flint. Photo: Battersea Dogs & Cats.

For five months, however, it appears that the colour of his coat outweighed and was more important than his beautiful character. That is the level of the negativity surrounding black fur. It's remarkable really how difficult it is for a shelter cat to overcome this obstacle which they carry by pure chance.

Phone number of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home: 0800 001 4444.

He's been with foster carers and been a superb cat there. I don't know whether this is true but one person commented to say that he had been reserved by an adopter. If it is true, I'm delighted because he is going to make a wonderful cat companion for a lucky person.

Statistics from the USA based upon a study found that of the cats left behind at animal shelters, black cats were the most common at 30% of the "left-behind" cats and with gray cats at 28% and white cat at 26%. They also state that the most common cats to be taken in at an animal shelter are black cats at 33%. Gray cats account for 22%.

Common sense dictates that the reason why people dislike black cats compared to, say, tabby cats is because they are superstitious and there are still very many people who are sufficiently superstitions to believe that black cats bring bad luck particularly with their association with witchcraft from mediaeval times. 

In addition, the black coat is plain and uninteresting to some people. It also is clear that the primary criteria for selecting cat at a cat shelter is not the character of the cat but their appearance. It's a shame because there are many cats with beautiful characters who would be deeply loved given the time but they remain at shelters where they are in jeopardy of being euthanised.

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