A problem that many shelters face is the difficulty in finding homes for black dogs, particularly if they are a large breed. This phenomenon is called “Black Dog Syndrome”. Black dogs are among the last to find homes because of many false assumptions and those can lead to many black dogs being euthanized. Black cats also have difficulty being adopted. So why is there hesitation when it comes to adopting a black dog or cat?
There are superstitions behind black dogs and cats being bad luck. Strangely enough, in Asia and England, black cats are actually considered good luck! Black dogs were once associated as evil creatures in folklore and are still seen portrayed as the sinister animals in movies. They appear menacing to a lot of people, therefore are commonly passed by at the shelter. With Hollywood showing black dogs as being the bad guy, sometimes they aren’t able to escape the stereotype in real life.
Another unfortunate reason there are some people who don’t care to adopt a black dog because they see them as being “plain”. With their darker colors, it can also be harder for shelter staff to take good photographs of them. They combat this issue by trying to improve lighting and really showcase their personalities. Black dogs are just as friendly and lovable as any other colored dog, so having a brighter, more eye catching photo can really help them crack through that image of being ominous and mean. What else is dark? Depression. Believe it or not, but there are folks that are actually convinced that owning a black dog can cause depression. As pet owners, we all know how our dogs (no matter the color) can brighten our days. It goes without saying that that claim is unfounded.
Luckily, more and more media outlets are raising awareness about Black Dog Syndrome, in hopes of educating others on the truth behind black dogs. At sit-stay-play In-home pet sitting & more, we accept all breeds and colors and know that, just like people, you can’t judge a book by it’s cover!
For more info on Black Dog Syndrome, visit here.