Bringing home a new feline is always an exciting time for many, but for a witch, it is especially exciting. Whether your new family member is a pedigreed feline, picked and purchased from a breeder, a newly beloved rescue in need of a good home, or anything in-between, it does not matter. A witch’s fur baby is chosen because we have the love to give and we want to share our homes and lives with them. The bond between a witch and her cat has been repeatedly immortalized in stories from as early as Shakespeare’s: Graymalkin and in films such as the beloved Bell, Book and Candle’s: Pyewacket to as recently as Kiki’s Delivery Service: JiJi over the centuries. There are examples aplenty but one thing remains, we witches love our cats.
Whether modern witches love cats because the Egyptians once considered them gods, because cats have centuries of history in the service of witches, or simply because we enjoy the energy, personality, and character of our furry faced friends, the fact remains; witches choose cats more often than any other creatures to share their lives. Perhaps in the days long ago, it was because a household cat kept the mice away from the roots, herbs, and food that were stored for the witch to survive and to use in her spell work. Perhaps it was because the witch felt a bond with the cat, or would use a spell to see through the eyes of her furry beloved. We will never know for certain, but the witchy love for felines remains with modern day witches.
While black cats are often a favorite of many witches, in story and song, in reality witches have cats of all colors, all types and genders. Most of us are not picky when it comes to looks. Since I adopt outdoor cats where ever I live, I have been blessed with knowing: grays, blacks, whites, marmalades, calicos, tuxedos, tortoiseshells, everything in between and even my late and much beloved Snowshoe Siamese, Sinatra. He was my very spoiled and only, baby for 14 years, and then suddenly had to share me with my Az starting in ‘94, then a child came in ‘95, then suddenly two more children in ’96. He crossed over in fall of ’98, just four months before Az did.
Our current feline fur-babies are “family” in more than just the “adopted” sense of the word. Myrddin was a rescue I found at work. Someone had dropped his family off, a mother and four kittens, in the busy parking lot of our call center. The mother stayed mostly hidden except to stick her face out from under the building to watch over her kittens a they played in the monkey grass and ate the cans of food that several of us supplied. As such, we never knew if it was her genetics or the father’s, but all the kittens had only 3 ½ legs. The knee to paw portion their left back leg was missing on all of the kittens. Myrddin was fierce from the first day I saw him. He was bold and would charge through the landscaping as if he owned the place. He did not let a little thing like a missing limb slow him down in the least! As it was, I spent days trying to catch the kitties as I feared they would be run over. Most were too fearful to wander far from their mother, but not my Merlin the Wild! I was finally able to catch Myrddin, only with the assistance of a friend named George and a lot of running, dodging, slipping and falling, but catch him I did. Myrddin took payment in blood and flesh for my troubles catching him though. It took several bandages and a good-sized length of gauze to cover my war wounds. However that was the only time he ever intentionally scratched anyone. One of his siblings was adopted that I am certain of due to speaking to the girl who seized him, but when I tried to find the rest of the family the next day, sadly, the mother and other two kittens were gone. Myrddin has become the “old man” of the house and rules the roost with his little furred paws. His son, when fully grown, challenged him for rule…. once. Myrddin is most often found in my lap, lying beside me, or within about three to five feet of me, until squirrel season returns, then his whole family joins him on the back of the couch in the dining room. After all, during daylight hours, that is where they have an excellent view out the bay window to the back yard and the 18 oak trees, where the scampering of squirrels occurs.
Morrigan, the Goddess of War
Our Morrigan, was also left in the same parking lot a year and a half later. She was such a fragile looking baby though, as she was so very tiny. A friend, Omar, simply walked over to her, picked her up and placed her on the palm of his hand. She sat sweetly in his hand and mewed once, ever so daintily. She did not even look real, she was so small, but she was a precious little ball of fluffiness from the minute I saw her. Omar graciously allowed me to bring her home as I fell in love instantly. As soon as they were introduced to this delicate little lady, my sons fell in love with her instantly, as well. At the time I brought her home though, Myrddin, who already “ruled the roost” by this time, glared at me from across the room; he would not even approach her for a few weeks, though she cozied up to him when he wasn’t looking. I decided to wait several months to get her spayed, not really thinking, obviously. She is the one who provided us with our third and final feline family member. She is a fearsome protector of her son, taking on any who dare try to harm him, or even look like they are trying to harm him. She has taken on our dog, Stolichnaya, for attempting to play with her beloved son. Stoli, three times her weight and twice her height, still trembles in fear two years later, when she gets too close to him and looks directly at him. If she is really annoyed with him, she will charge a foot toward him from across the room and I swear she snickers as he scampers backward heading for the nearest human legs to hide behind, whimpering and peeking around to make sure she is not still coming at him.
Herne, the Hunter
Eight months after Morrigan and Myrddin started snuggling down together and being playful with each other, their children arrived. Mini-Myrddin, Little Morrigan, Narcissus, and Herne, who was originally named Oddball. The other children favored either their mother or father exclusively, but Herne was the odd one out. He came out with mostly white fur, and a bit of color from both his mother and father. He is our last remaining of her children, one crossed over in kitten-hood, the rest placed with family and friends. However, we have decided that even though Herne is a fearsome hunter of stuffed mice and any bugs or the occasional poor, innocent geckos who make it into the house, we, perhaps, misnamed him. We consider the fact that we may should have named him “Casanova” as he has never met a human that he feels can possibly survive without the joy of petting him. To call him friendly is a gross understatement. He is a large boy, not fat, but tall and long. When he stands and reaches up, he can reach the ledge of our cabinets without fail. He also has a love of the highest places in the house. In fact, he enjoys camping out on the highest level of their tallest kitty condo and looking down on the lesser humans and dogs, as well as his mom and dad. He will only give up his roost when the Goddess of War decides to charge up the condo at him and he flees her furry wrath, or playfulness, whichever she is displaying at the moment! They are a true family and it is funny to watch Herne, at his age, approach one of his parents and get too close, as to this day they will snake a paw out, grab him and start grooming him like they did back when he was a tiny kitten.
As you can tell, I love our kitties and they are definitely family as far as my sons and I are concerned. Just as kitty love is a big thing in our family, kitty love is a big thing with the witches who love them in general, many of us cast claiming spells, blessing spells, protection spells and consecration spells, etc. so that our precious felines and other pets know that they are in their forever home and that they are a part of our forever family. Yes, I know it sounds too precious, but hey, we witches love our kitties, each and every one! So here is the spell I used for anyone who wishes to use it as well. I simply recite the spell while petting the kitties and envisioning them grown and a part of our household forever. After all, Sinatra tends to pop up every so often in the corner of our eyes, so I believe he still visits on occasion, even though I did not “spell” him in with this spell, he was consecrated to our coven and often hung out in magickal circles, both indoors and out. We just loved him so much he knew he was forever family.
Now that you have come to me,
Curious and so furry,
Day and night I’ll be your friend,
Love like ours will never end.
In my heart forever be,
Part of my dear family,
I’ll love you and you love me
As I will so mote it be.