Friday, September 3, 2010



   During Halloween season, when images of ghosts and goblins start to inhabit our consciousness, it is important to remember that people are not the only ones who have been known to return to our world of perception as spirits, apparitions, phantoms or poltergeists.  Dogs, cats, sheep, horses, and cattle have been known to haunt human beings throughout the history of folklore.
   Typically, parasychologists consider ghostly animals as those creatures whose deaths were unusually emotional in some way, and that their new identity of a ghost is a curse that never allows them to est.  Sometimes they are harmless, although frightening.  However if they appear colored dark black than usually they represent a premonition that something dire is about to happen.  In Trucker lore, the image of a black dog is usually the ultimate sign of dread and bad luck.
   In East Anglia generally, whenever someone was o their death bed, people would say that "the black dog is at his heels".  In the British Isles, old timers can spin many a yarn about ominous "black dogs: roaming deserted roads at night.  There have been numerous reports in local newspapers of a monstrous black dog with huge teeth and claws from the area around Yorkshire, northern England.  Some believe that anyone who sees the dog clearly will die soon after the encounter.  In Wales, they have what's known as the red-eyed Gwyllgi, or the Dog of Darkness.  Essex, for example, is said to be haunted by a dog that apparently can only be seen by other dogs, as perfectly normal pet dogs go up to it and react as if it were just another dog when the human eye can see nothing.  According to legend, in real life the dog was  a bull terrier, which lived in a inn from about 1900 to 1914 and was a fearsome fighter, having killed several neighborhood dogs and never suffering a defeat.
   In Wichita, Kansas, Mrs. Lowanda Cady was asleep one night when she was suddenly awakened by the sound of barking even after her dog had already died.  The barking sounded exactly the same as her late dog's bark and it actually drove off a thief who was raiding her kitchen at the time.
   Even more numerous are the stories of places reported to be infested with phantom cats.  Very often, a single street alone can average a history of at least four reported feline haunting's.  Paranormal researches and believers in spirits alike attribute the excessive number of cat ghosts to the fact that cats, more than any other domestic animal, meet sudden and unnatural ends, especially in impoverished districts.
   In many different writings through history, cats were explained as animals that from all ages were associated with the supernatural from the pyramids of ancient Egypt to French sorcerers who used cat's blood to treat ailments.  In 1750 in the Hebrides, cats were thought of as extraordinarily psychic and sometimes burned as if they were witches.  So many of them met this horrible fate that some believe it unleashed an army of cat phantoms across the world and contributed to the superstitious belief that a black cat crossing your path was a sign that harm would soon come your way.
   There is a website called Ghosts.org, that has a plethora of subscribers who claim to be plagued by the spirits of companion animals.  Also, it is currently chronicling the adventures of some Australian parapsychologists searching for the ghost of the last bear killed in England.