Celebrating Cats in October

I never realized there were so many cat-related holidays in October and that the whole month is considered Black Cat Awareness Month. Global Cat Day, also known as National Feral Cat Day, was celebrated on October 16. National Black Cat Day is celebrated on October 27, and National Cat Day is on October 29.

Black Cat Day honors those dark-furred felines who have been given a bad rap by being accused of causing bad luck if they cross your path. Because of this, they are the least likely cats to be adopted. To counteract this myth and raise the image of mini panthers as they are sometimes known, two black cat holidays were created – Black Cat Appreciation Day on August 17 that I wrote about in the summer (https://wp.me/p6m4z7-28R) and National Black Cat Day on October 29.

National Cat Day was created to help the public recognize the need to rescue cats. It also encourages cat lovers to recognize the companionship and unconditional love that pet cats bestow upon their humans. While these special dates are important to feline aficionados, there’s a more important and personal one for me and my fur kitties. It’s only fitting that Harry and Hermione’s Gotcha Day is celebrated on October 24 on my daughter’s birthday and only a few days before National Black Cat and National Cat Days.

We hadn’t planned to pick up two kittens for Holly’s birthday last year, but it turned out to be her best gift ever. Harry, who happens to be a black cat, and his sister, Hermione, a dilute calico, have grown into beautiful cats and become good fur friends to our 11-year-old tabby, Stripey.

I’ve written about how they came into our household nearly a year after we lost our 17-year-old Siamese, Oliver. (https://wp.me/p6m4z7-2dD) They also share their adventures in our home in Kitty Korner Columns on my cat character’s blog (https://sneakylibrarycat.wordpress.com).

Recently, I’ve penned some poems about them that I published on AllPoetry.com. I think they’re appropriate to share for the upcoming cat holidays and as a belated Gotcha Day tribute to Harry and Hermione:

Cat Café

Room full of cats
Room full of people
Black kitten by the window
Silky fur, big golden eyes
playful yet a little shy
Waiting for us
Can we take him home?
He’s part of a pair
Sweet calico
pretty tri-colored girl
tail held high without fear
Waiting for us
Can we take two?
Room in our home
Room in our lives
We lost our senior boy last year

Cats by Day and Night

Harry in the morning
black head resting against my pillow
his purrs wake me softly
I run my hands through his silky fur
the day brightens

I dress and shower
say goodbye to my cats
hard to leave for work
seeing sad furry faces
I’ll be back.

I visit for lunch
serve their favorite treats
All three gather round to snack
Stripey rubs my ankles with his cheeks
the day brightens

I close the door
wave to my cats in the windows
watching me go
sad furry faces
I’ll be back.

I arrive home
greeted by all three
I feed them before I eat
I’m glad to be back
with my fur babies

Hermione at night
white paws on my sheets
kneading a gentle lullaby
I fall asleep to the rhythm of her strokes
the night brightens

What are your plans for Black Cat and National Cat Day? If you’d like to post pictures of your black cats on social media, you can use the hashtag #NationalBlackCatDay. Likewise, you may share photos and stories of your cats with #NationalCatDay. The National Cat Day website offers 20 ways to celebrate this day. National Cat Day was created by Pet Lifestyle Expert and Animal Welfare Advocate, Colleen Paige, in 2005.   Since its inception, it has helped save the lives of more than one million cats. National Black Cat Day is an opportunity to honor your own or other cats of dark color a few days before Halloween.

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Debbie DeLouise

Debbie De Louise is an award-winning author and a reference librarian at a public library on Long Island. She is a member of Sisters-in-Crime, International Thriller Writers, Long Island Authors Group, and the Cat Writer’s Association. She has a BA in English and an MLS in Library Science from Long Island University. Her Cobble Cove mystery series published by Solstice Publishing includes A Stone's Throw, Between a Rock and a Hard Place, Written in Stone, and Love on the Rocks. Debbie has also written articles and short stories for several anthologies of various genres and a romantic comedy novella, When Jack Trumps Ace. She is also the author of two standalone novels; Reason to Die, a mystery, and Cloudy Rainbow, a paranormal romance. Her psychological mystery, Sea Scope, is currently on pre-order and is due to be published in May 2019. She lives on Long Island with her husband, daughter, and 3 cats.

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