In 2015, the RSPCA rehomed many more black, and black-and-white cats than any other coat colour – 1,746 black cats and 1,325 black-and-white cats, compared with the next highest coat colour, which was tabby cats, with 653 rehomings.
What we have found by looking at our data is that there are many more black, and black-and-white, cats in the population – which may be affecting our perception on how unpopular they are.
"In 2015, the RSPCA rehomed many more black, and black-and-white cats than any other coat colour – 1,746 black cats and 1,325 black-and-white cats, compared with the next highest coat colour, which was tabby cats, with 653 rehomings."
However, looking at the length of time it takes to find a new home, black and black and white cats can take a little longer than some other coat colours – for example ginger or grey. But then we have far fewer cats of these coat colours in our care, so it may be that they are considered eye-catching amongst all the black cats.
We are looking at the possibility of running some more robust statistical analysis of our data to better understand the relationship between coat colour and the length of time it takes to rehome a cat. Of course, there are lots of other factors as well as a cat's coat colour which will affect how easy it is to find them a new home – for example, the number of suitable adopters in the area, the health of the cat, age or personality of the cat, and the cost of adoption.
There are a lot of myths around black cats. Some people see them as a sign of good luck, while others see them as a sign of bad luck. But really they’re just the same as other cats – each has their own personality and it’s important to look beyond the colour of their coat. When choosing a cat, it’s important to think about what type of personality would suit you and your family the most. An interesting thing about cats, and most cat owners will know this, is that there is just such a huge variation in their personalities. Each really is an individual.
More information on keeping pets happy and healthy can be found at the RSPCA website.