Your cat hates Halloween.
Despite being an iconic feature of the haunting holiday, cats definitely don’t dig the festival of phantoms and frights. I know this because I asked them. What, you thought Galaxy Jackson was the only one who talked to cats? I feel it’s my sworn veterinary duty to share with you some of the reasons felines want out of the scare business and offer alternative animals to accompany witches, wizards and otherworldly apparitions. And I’m not just talking about Jack Russell terriers.
Cats Want a Promotion from Sorcerer’s Sidekick
Many cats I’ve spoken with believe the “witch and her black cat” routine is tired. Most think a modern upgrade to “Zombie Ruler” or “Alien Overlord” is needed fi they’re going to continue participating in Halloween. One black cat I interviewed, although I did detect a smudge of gray on her tummy, remarked she couldn’t go anywhere without people quipping, “Where’d you park your broom?” or “Stocking up supplies for a magical potion?” Enough with the giggles already. It’s time we put cats squarely where they deserve during Halloween: As our superiors. If their image is overhauled, I believe the majority of cats would embrace their role in Halloween.
Contemporary Cats Demand Diversity
I was surprised to hear many friendly-faced and non-black cats felt left out during Halloween. “Every October 31 is a blow to my self-esteem.” commented a tearful tabby. “Everywhere I look I only see images of terrifyingly scrawny cats with these unattainable and unnaturally long fangs and claws that have obviously been Photoshopped. What kind of messages are we sending out future felines? That being emaciated and terrifying gets you ahead in life? How can my kittens believe they can be anything when all they see are cats that don’t look like them? I mean, look at this face, not to mention I may have put on a few pounds after my second litter. How can my kitties view me as a role model when I’m competing with that?” Most of the cats I questioned strongly encouraged the media to include plump, short, friendly, and younger cats and reject the stereotypical characterizations of what it means to be menacing.
What You Think Is Scary, Cats Think Is Stupid
An overwhelming majority of cats reported being fed up with gaudy decorations, fake spider webs, flashing lights, and spooky soundtracks. “I like things the way they are. When my crazy family drags out the boxes from the attic, I literally have a panic attack.” Many cats complained about urination accidents, diarrhea, and insomnia during the Halloween season. “I heard about a Siamese on my block who mistook a string hanging off a fake spider for a snake. Poor chap ate it. A week in the hospital was the price he paid for his owner’s carelessness.” Another shared a woeful tale of a late-night Halloween bash and a back door left open. The cat was never seen again. “It was a tragedy that should’ve never happened.” “Leave decorations to professionals or houses without cats.” was the recurring message from cats quizzed for this story.
Alternative Halloween Animals
I was startled by the number of cats that wanted out of Halloween. “We’ve done our time.” “Maybe another species should see how it feels to be vilified simply due to the color of their fur.” Black cats reported being adopted from shelters at alarmingly low rates, being chased by sadistic humans, and being considered unlucky. “How does this still happen in 2016? Cats are cats, regardless of color.” hissed a clearly agitated charcoal tom. Rats, mousy-faced dogs, and snakes were clear front-runners for alternative icons. Many also had ideas on how to make the transition from Halloween cats. “I’d start by having the replacement critter serve as an understudy to the witch’s cat. After a couple of seasons, the cat could ascend to a World Overlord or similar role and leave the Jack Russell with the wizards and witches.”
Whatever your thoughts on cats and Halloween, the evidence is clear: Halloween poses real threats to cats. Consider these findings and be extra-attentive to your favorite feline during the scariest time of year.