Never let it be said that pet owners are fickle for the latest fad, but it does appear that hundreds of black cats are being abandoned because they are not photogenic enough. Their colouring may be considered good luck, but its downside is that their features can be hard to see in their owners’ “selfies”.
The RSPCA announced that the number of black cats being abandoned has risen sharply, and they blame the selfie craze according to the Daily Mail. A spokesman for the animal welfare charity said that more than 70 percent of the 1,000 cats in its care were black. He blamed the popularity amongst owners of taking selfies on their phones, and the cats’ seeming inability to look good on the resultant photo.
The spokesman said: “There are a number of reasons for us having so many black cats, including the fact that black animals tend not to photograph as well as other cats with more distinctive markings.
He said that the problems for black cats is that other colours are easier to tell apart and their features are easier to pick out in pictures. This means that a black cat is not the unique fashion statement that some owners are looking for.
The spokesman added: “There is a national problem with rehoming cats of this colour. We really are puzzled as to why this still happens but we would urge people to never judge a cat by its colour and look at its personality instead.”
Founder Ronnie McMillen, 71, said: “We have had a lot of black cats in this year – people don’t like black at the moment. Others look at the black cats and then just say ‘Oh, have you got anything else?'”
Unlike their human counterparts – who are often heaped with ridicule – ginger male cats are considered to be the best looking by customers at Millwood Rescue. But Mr McMillen defended black cats nonetheless: “Ginger males cats are the most popular but I think the black cats are beautiful, and they photograph fine.”
One black cat owner Gabriella Fletcher, 20, from Stourbridge hit back at the critics. She claimed she regularly took selfies with her cat Susie: “It is hard to get a good picture as you can’t really see how beautiful Susie is. But it’s very sad that people feel the need to overlook them just because they are black. They are just as special as any other cat.
“I only got Susie recently, she was a rescue cat and the centre said they were being bombarded with black cats. It’s a real shame.” Another owner claimed the cats are “mysterious and beautiful”.
As the market demands better and better camera phones for use in selfies it cannot be long before someone invents a way to show off black cats properly. Until then anyone who refers black to ginger will be spoilt for choice.