Since cats are mysterious and puzzling little furballs, they have certainly inspired a variety of legends and myths. In fact, our adorable feline friends have earned a rather impressive collection of rural and urban legends. A local veterinarian discusses feline folklore below.
Our feline pals are associated with many different goddesses. The most well-known might be Egypt’s Bastet, who was often depicted like a cat. Ailuros, an ancient Greek kitty goddess, is another one of the most well-known. The Greeks also recognized Artemis and Athena as cat goddesses. The Norse goddess, Freya, rode a chariot pulled by two large cats. The Hindu goddesses, Parvati and Durga, were also closely associated with big kitties.
Our feline friends have also long been associated with both good and bad luck. In Western mythology, black cats have long been considered bad luck. Because of this, these unfortunate superstitions continue to this day, causing low adoption rates of black kitties.This is actually very unfortunate, as these superstitions continue to this day, and play a role in the low adoption rates of black cats. In other cultures and times, black cats have been considered good luck. In some cases, a cat’s luck depends on their coloring. For example, Buddhist folklore states that cats with dark fur bring gold, while lighter-colored ones attract silver. The Russians have their own tale of cats where Russian Blue kitties are considered to be good luck. In China, age connects with luck, as older furballs are the most fortunate.
One of the most enduring myths about kitties is the story of the pussy willow. This folklore starts with a playful litter of furballs chasing butterflies on a sunny spring day. Sadly, the kittens fall into a river. Their desperate mother cries out in distress. A willow tree on the riverbank hears her terrifying meows, and lowers its branches into the water. The kittens grab the branches and climb to safety, soaked and crying. Since then, the willow trees’ long, graceful branches sprout with furry ‘kitten’ buds every spring.
Cats have nine lives. At least that’s what legend says. While some felines do have an unbelievable ability to escape dangerous situations, this is usually just luck. Always keep your feline friend safe indoors. Of course, it won’t hurt to give your kitty an overload of toys, treats, soft beds, and catnip.
Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Contact your local animal clinic!