Ghosts, Spooks, Spectres, and Things that Go Woof in the Night
It’s Halloween, the spookiest night of the year! Tonight is the night ghosts and goblins glide past your door looking for treats and handouts. Better give them some or you’re likely to be the victim of a prank, or worse.
This is the night where the border between this world and the other world becomes transparent and the dead pass through. But ghostly sightings are not confined to just Halloween night. Spectral beings can haunt a place continually every day and night. And some of these phantoms are not people who have passed on, lost, looking for the heavenly light.
There are many canine hauntings throughout the world. Can deceased pets haunt? Sure they can. Pets share the same intelligence and life force as people, and they have their own distinct personalities. If you believe the ghosts of loved ones remain on earth, then that would include animals as well as people. With that in mind, I have a few ghost stories for you – canine style.
The Black Dog is primarily folklore of the British Isles, dating back as far as the Celts. It is a malevolent, huge black canine bringing fear and sometimes death. It can appear as a ghost or phantom in graveyards, on roads, or in the countryside. It is a dangerous being and should always be taken seriously.
One variation of the Black Dog legend comes from Yorkshire. It was once a shepherd’s dog that jumped down a cliff onto a ledge to save a fallen sheep. When the shepherd arrived he deemed it too dangerous to save the two animals and left them to die. In grief and indignation, the dog howled until it died. It now roams the earth with an intense hatred of humans. If you look directly into Black Dog’s eyes, you are immediately consumed by fire.
The Black Dog legend inspired Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes adventure The Hound of the Baskervilles in 1902.
Hollywood heart throb Rudolph Valentino, also known as the “Latin Lover”, was one of the most popular silent film stars of the 1920s. Like many other Hollywood stars, their pets were interred at the famous Los Angeles Pet Cemetery. A gentle ghost of a dog, thought to be Rudolph Valentino’s former pet, haunts the area near his grave. If you visit this grave, you may feel your hand licked or touched, or a gentle shove against your legs, as if Kabar is nudging you looking for a treat or a pat on the head.
General William Barksdale’s Dog
Confederate general William Barksdale lost his life at Gettysburg. He was buried in a shallow grave but was not claimed until later by his wife. Mrs. Barksdale traveled north and was accompanied by the general’s favorite hunting dog. When exhuming the General’s grave, the dog whimpered which progressively grew into a full wail. Once the general had been recovered, the dog refused to leave the gravesite and no coaching would work. Finally, the animal had to be left behind. Residents recalled seeing the dog, as he remained steadfast by the site.
Some say the dog guarded the grave and became vicious when anyone approached. The dog would accept neither food nor water. Each night, the poor animal could be heard howling and whimpering. Finally, there was silence. The dog had either starved to death or had died of a broken heart.
To this day near the site, you can sometimes hear a dog howling in the night. Sounds like Mrs. Barksdale took the wrong body back to Mississippi.
The Rose Hill Manor Blue Dog
Rose Hill Manor is an historic, two hundred-year-old mansion located in northern Maryland and was once owned and lived in by the first governor of Maryland. Many ghosts reportedly haunt it, one of which is the blue ghost of an old dog that sometimes wanders the grounds at midnight.
A wealthy man once owned the mansion with only his dog for company. He didn’t trust banks with his money or gold, so he buried all of it somewhere on the property. In his will, he left directions on where to find it. After he died, many people searched the estate for the buried treasure based on his clues, but no one had been successful.
On some nights, the old blue dog can be seen roaming the grounds and on occasion has been heard to bark. It is believed if you follow the ghost dog while he’s barking, you will be led to the buried gold. However, the ghostly blue dog always disappears before any treasure can be found.
The streets of Atlantic City, New Jersey is haunted by a little dog dubbed “Night Life”. This dog was owned by a local bartender and was considered a friend and protector of the local drunks. When customers had a few too many, Night Life would walk them home safely. He would wait until traffic was clear before guiding his inebriated “charges” across the street. When done, he would return to the bar. If the task took Night Life too far from home, he would return by hailing a cab. All the taxi driver’s in town knew Night Life and always gave him a free ride.
When Night Life died, the locals took up a collection to bury him in a pet cemetery not far from AC. But Night Life still roams the downtown street corners waiting to guide drunks across the street. Taxi drivers still report seeing the spectral little dog waiting on the corner hoping for a ride home.
And now for the most terrifying haunting of all. Roaming the countryside is a ghost and her playful spectral dog. They have been known to haunt homes with dogs on Halloween night, inciting mortal dogs to steal cat toys, chew cell phones and iPods, and run outside and roll in stinky. Should you see the wind rush in and pick up leaves…hear a lonely howl in the distance…close your door and lock it!
Happy Halloween Ya’all !!
Like this post? Subscribe to my RSS feed and get loads more!