Are Kentuckians Genuinely Seeing Big Cats In the Wild?

Big cat sighting ky?
Big cat sighting KY? – No this is a made up picture to illustrate the article
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I have just received another interesting comment about a “big cat sighting” from a lady in Kentucky whose name is Melissa. This is her comment:

I live in western ky up by the ohio, surrounded by the Cumberland and Tennessee river. In the middle of the day I have seen black bear, and black cats. If you’re familiar with ky fields, there’s always tufts of weed that stand two to three feet hight in the middle of them.
I was sitting on my front porch one day and in the field in front of my house a black cat came out of the tree line. Walking across the field I seen it’s head was really square and a long tail that curls up at the end.

While walking in front of one of those tufts of weeds, it blocked it out from my view. So I know it’s back was around 2 – 3 feet off the ground. I called to it “kitty kitty kitty”. It froze long enough for me to look at it through a scope, and then casually walked to the next tree line.

No fear humans at all. Second sighting was at night, pulling up in my driveway in a Toyota camry. There across from my front door (ABOUT 12 feet away) a black cat comes runnin across the driveway in front of the car being brightlighted by my headlights.

Panting, i could see its teeth, and in the light you could see a pattern of stripes in the black coat. Way bigger than a bobcat though, i seen those a lot, this one was tall enough to see over the hood of the car, when it ran in front it was only about six feet away. I had a hard time getting out and walk in (running) in the front door.

This is the link to her comment on the page which is entitled Black Cats in Kentucky in which there is reference to another sighting in KY by another person. Such sightings are not confined to Kentucky or America. North Carolina has cougar sightings but these appear to be more genuine.

I’m always interested in big cat sightings. Quite often, big cat sightings are of black cats. Several questions arise out of the sightings:

  • Are these sightings of genuine large wild cats living in Kentucky?
  • Are people seeing what was once a captive cougar or a hybrid wild cat of some sort that has escaped or has been released?
  • Are people seeing a large dog or some other species of animal which at a distance may, under certain lighting conditions or in foliage, resemble a large wild cat?
  • Or are people seeing a large black domestic cat?

The only large wild cat species in America is the cougar aka the mountain lion and puma. Officially, according to wildlife and wild cat experts, the puma does not live in Kentucky. The mountain lion has been pushed out of central and eastern America and now inhabits the Western half or one third of America.

That does not automatically mean that a puma might not wander into the state of Kentucky from the West. I do recall the story of a mountain lion roaming into the eastern states from the West. However, this is unlikely. What is perhaps more likely is that people are seeing an animal other than a mountain lion. They might be seeing a bobcat because the Bobcat does live in Kentucky. However, it is a much smaller wild cat species.

There are black mountain lions. They are sometimes called black panthers. It is interesting that people often link the colour black with unconfirmed sightings of large cats in the wild. This happens in any country. This may indicate that people are slightly anxious about the presence of large animals (any large and dangerous animal) outside their home and at the first opportunity decide that they have seen such an animal.

The colour black is linked to the dark – mysterious and unknown things and even witchcraft. I think this linkage between the colour black and large, dangerous cats is significant in indicating that there is perhaps a background fear of unknown dangers out there, in the wild. There is a lot of subliminal fear in any society.

An alternative theory is that, in America, there may be more people breeding large hybrid wild cats than people imagine. A lot of people in America like to keep captive exotic cats and this could lead to experimentation with breeding and in turn this could lead to the release or escape of the animal.

In addition, the simple and humble black domestic cat can sometimes be quite large and under certain lighting conditions and at a distance can appear to be much larger than he or she is, in resembling a black panther.

Finally, almost anything, even inanimate objects, can sometimes appear to be large cats at a distance if a person is sufficiently tuned into the idea that a large cat is out there. There is also a tendency to enlarge cats that are sighted at a distance. This is probably due to an expression of fear as well – justifying a person’s fear perhaps.

Big cat sightings are a lot to do with the psychology of the person making the sighting.

6 thoughts on “Are Kentuckians Genuinely Seeing Big Cats In the Wild?”

  1. So, what is called the Florida Black Panther is really a black mountain lion?
    This is confusing to me. We have no mountains, not even a decent hill here.

    • LOL. Yes, correct about the panther. The Florida panther is cut off from other panthers on what is called a island (not a real island). This stops the cat outbreeding and extending the gene pool so the Florida panther becomes ever more inbred and unhealthy.

      The mountain lion also lives in jungle in S.America. The better name is “puma”. Puma is the real or more scientific name.


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