Maybe it rolls around in poison.
Oooh the Moggie of Doom !
A cat in Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Providence, Rhode Island, appears to sense when one of the elderly residents is about to die, Reuters reports. Oscar has been at Steere House for two years, during which he's settled down beside 25 old timers shortly before they passed away. Dr Joan Teno, a professor of …
What they also appear to have missed is the self-fulfilling prophesy.
People can attribute cause and effect where there is none, maybe owing to a couple of coincidences, and then when the cat then goes to sit near a wrinkly, the wrinkly believes his or her time is up, and duly obliges, thus strengthening the myth.
Has anyone thought to see if it the damned cat is the cause of death ?
If the cat is evicted, does the elderly bod survive ?
Perhaps the old dears are sufferering from a reaction to an allergen / pathogen ?.
I know if it had that kind of reputation and sat on my bed it would get a swift kick.
...held cats in such high esteem because they were considered the guardians of Ra (the Sun god) as he died (sun set) and passed through the underworld to be reborn (sun rise).
Hmmmm, if my moggy decides to come and sit near me (she's a typical cat...only comes near me when she wants food) then I am going to start writing out my will!
... not that uncommon.
Egyptians revered cats as they are the guardians of the spirit world, to have a cat near you at the time of death is supposed to facilitate safe passage to the other side.
On a scientific note, the theory that I subscribe to is that they can pick up on the electro-chemicals we transmit while we are living, obviously getting close to death that electo-chemical field starts to wan, hence the reason cats sense death.
From what is being reported, Oscar only visits patients that later will die. It is not like it randomly visits patients and some of them die. And most of those the cat visits are already in a state in which they can't acknowledge the cat's presence, therefore a self-fulfilling prophecy is rather unlikey.
An allergic reaction to the cat can also be counted out, as the hospital staff did not mention to find not any symptoms related to that.
German Spiegel reports that at one point a doctor at the nursing home predicted the imminent death of a patient, but Oscar came by and left again. The doctor thought that this time the cat was wrong, but it turned out the doctor was mistaken. The patient lived for another ten hours and promptly, two hours before the actual death, Oscar showed up.
The Spiegel report also said that the cat otherwise is not very social and keeps to itself.
I got up one morning and into the bathroom for the brushing of teeth and a quick wash before getting off out to work.
So there I was in the altogether having a wash with my dear old moggy weaving in and around my legs purring away. Woops, the soaps slips out of my hands and falls onto the floor. So I squat down to pick it up and suddenly the little sod takes a swipe at my dangly bits with claws extended. The shock makes me jump up in shock and I smack my head on the underside of the washand basin on the way up.
Talk about a double whammy. ;)
"On a scientific note, the theory that I subscribe to is that they can pick up on the electro-chemicals we transmit while we are living, obviously getting close to death that electo-chemical field starts to wan, hence the reason cats sense death."
Scientific? Theory? No. Start again please.
"From what is being reported, Oscar only visits patients that later will die. It is not like it randomly visits patients and some of them die."
Erm... don't we all die?
And if it is only being allowed in to see the ones in imminent death.. then it doesn't have any say in the matter - so no special powers need apply?
...how the hell would it make you feel if your eternal duty as decreed by the sun god Ra - perhaps because of some digression in a previous existence (ie as Shipman) - is to remain at an old folks' home in Rhode Island and be the valet of the lost souls? I wouldn't be too social myself, come to think of it. That must be one serious cat.
Tinkerbell the Cat from Next Door: "I'm going to chase birds, roll in some dirt, eat a few leaves of catnip and fall asleep on some fresh laundry. You?"
Tinkerbell Cat: "Suit yourself."
Knowing cats, I wouldn't be at all surprised if the reason they curl up besides someone just before they die is to be the first to tuck into them as soon as they're gone. It's no different to the odd-bods who camp outside shops to bagsy the first Playstation 3, except they don't go home and feast on human flesh. Do they?
Maybe it's an antisocial cat and goes to see people who are essentially unable to move, but are still relatively warm (cat's do like warmth)... what they need to do is have a (controlled) fire in a room just for the cat, then it will prove that the cat is nothing to do with it and the old codgers will die anyway.
I also like the lizard alliance theory though.
By andy gibson
Posted Thursday 26th July 2007 11:26 GMT
I thought cats were well known to be able to see the grim reaper and predict death?
agreed - has this not been observed behaviour for centuries?
...except now we're looking to science to explaim it instead of dunking the cat's owner in the river and seeing if they live (before burning them at the stake)
People who are imminently dying - of nursing-home type ailments, or just drawn-out old-age frailty - their organs start to fail, so their biochemistry changes, toxins aren't being removed, digestion stops, dehydration occurs, urination ceases, &c &c.... so they smell different. On their sweat, if they sweat, on their breath, farts if any, and general skin odour. Can't see there's anything more to it than that.
This sounds like a classic case of the human mind seeking patterns in coincidences and a bit of confirmation bias to boot. The article doesn't mention all the old codgers who miraculously failed to die when the cat came and lay down next to them, for example. I'm sure if you include that data then the apparent pattern completely disappears.
"'From what is being reported, Oscar only visits patients that later will die. It is not like it randomly visits patients and some of them die.'
Erm... don't we all die?
And if it is only being allowed in to see the ones in imminent death.. then it doesn't have any say in the matter - so no special powers need apply?"
Mr. Hall, are you just trying to splice hair?
Make my above sentence "that die soon after" and note that the cat apparently can roam rather freely in the nursing home.
And if you go nitpicking about this any further, I will see that Oscar pays a visit to you.
If cats can smell when people are going to die then why haven't scientists managed to make a electronic sniffer that can do the same thing? This will become the standard "scientific" explanation for this story though because it sounds reasonable.
Likewise, showers of frogs or fish, relatively frequently reported, are supposedly caused by waterspouts that suck the animals up, though we have no evidence that that's what happens.
Though the simplest solution is the most likely, the most likely solution isn't definitely the correct one.
Without proper analysis of when the cat goes where, we're all just guesing. Be honest, we don't know if the cat senses death and if it does, no one knows how. It's fun to guess though. (i'm torn between "it's people's perceptions" and "the cat sees the reaper" myself...)
I always felt there was something not right about cats.
This particular one should be apprehended immediately and rendered to the appropriate authorities. I am sure the Jesuits still know how to work a rack to save a life, and it would be most interesting to find out who eventually is exorcised. (Probably the DoD).
Most commenters haven't noticed that at least one granny welcomed Oscar as helping her to go to heaven.
Death is often a welcome caller. People get tired of fighting to live. Maybe the cat feels the inner peace radiating from those about to die and quite ready for it.
We can at least be sure that there are lots of signals - chemical and behavioural - that are too subtle for most of us to catch (ie we´ve unlearned how to be conscious of perceiving them) but that are plain as day to animals tuned to those particular vibrations.
If I don't have pussy when I go, then I'd like a kitty, please!
Mentioned elsewhere is the cat only tends to hang out with people in the last two or four hours of their life. It doesn't tend to be social normally, so it doesnt appear that its just getting lucky.
As for the 'seeing why everyone is gathering around grandma' again it seems to be in the other direction in a number of cases. Rather than the family coming for the final hours and then the cat showing up, the cat would show up and then the nurse would call the family. Want to talk about a freaky phone call? 'Hello, the cat of doom has said your relative is about to snuff it, can you make it over quickly?'
As for the scared to death argument someone mentioned it is a dementia/alzheimer's ward and the staff are under the opinion the dying generally never know the cat is there. This one I do think is a bit open to question, but even if they know its there they may not be aware of its cat of doom status.
Cats look for places to lie up during the day if disturbed they will go elsewhere and not come back they sleep a lot most of the day and in
your house they are constantly being annoyed in this case no one bothered him there since people generally won't go long without disturbing the cat if they are even slightly mobile even if asleep he more than likely watches for a bit if nothing moves even a hair he settles in until people once again chase him out. Or he could be the spirit of death I know I wouldn't want him in my room "shoo scat I am not ready to go".
Is there any truth in the rumour that the nursing home is bringing in a Labradour Retriever to check on the elderley residents as well.
That way they don't just rely on the CAT scan, they have Lab reports too.
Hey and please show some respect. Don't call them Wrinklys. Ageism is as offensive as racism to us old people.
Just think of the pranks you could do!
- You could drug the cat and curl it up on someone else's bed while theyre having an afternoon nap.
- You could put catnip on somebody's clothes and watch them panic as the cat follows them around all day.
- Maybe you could bring an Alsatian to guard your bed?
- You could sew a toy mouse to somebody's slipper and watch them run around as the cat attacks their ankles
- You could kick the cat every time you see it so it wont come near you, although it might just follow you out of spite...
- If you look on the beeb's article it says the moggie 'meows in protest' if its removed from its intended prey. You could burn a cd of a cat meowing and play it on loop outside one of the rooms with the door closed
- Tell you what though, i wouldnt like to be the vet that has to take this kitty's temperature! Guaranteed you wouldnt outlive the day!
- Imagine filming a documentary about it, all of a sudden this otherwise unsociable cat gets pally with the cameraman, you wouldnt want to fly home would you?
- One final thought, who will the moggy turn to when its final hour comes? will it just sit on an empty bed hugging itself and looking uneasily at shadows?
I am in no doubt that this happened and that the cat somehow knew.
When my grandfather was in a home there was a little white cat that used to wonder round the place.. it always used to come and visit the patients daily, it used to nap on their beds and cuddle up to them and in the evenings it would go back to its bed in reception..
There was a man that was in the bed next to my grandfather, who during the night took a turn for the worse, while his family were away on vacation, the cat stayed on the bed with him all night (which it never normaly did).. i truelly believe that the cat was looking after him, protecting him, giving him company when he had no body.. and that night the man passed away and he wasnt alone.. and this wasnt the only person in the home that this happened to..
Shame on anyone to call cats vermin or pests, they are much better than people could ever be.. if you had been in that cats position, would you have stayed with a stranger all night on his death bed or would you have walked away and left it to somebody else?? i can guarantee the answer from majority of people!
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