You are here: Real Ghost Stories :: Haunted Places :: The Cats Knew First

Real Ghost Stories

The Cats Knew First


Our family home caught fire in 1990. With very few possessions, I moved with two of the cats to a house which belonged to a professor friend of mine. It was my last quarter of undergraduate school, so I basically just studied and slept there. I knew that I would only be there for a couple of months.

The house was lovely, early 1900's brick construction, gleaming hard wood throughout with a ravine behind it that was quite steep. One advantage of having few possessions left was how easy it made it to move. I had just a futon with no frame which I set down in one of the upstairs bedrooms on the floor. The cats would sleep there as well, but in an odd way. They would sleep on the floor near the futon, cover their heads with their front paws and nestle their heads under the edges of the futon. I attributed this to their being a bit nervous because this was a new place. It usually takes some time for cats to adjust to new surroundings. During the day, workmen would be outside taking care of some repairs.

One day my friend Mykl came by and we went exploring in the house. We went up to the attic and found a few boxes. One was a box of toys. In front of the box near the center of the room, about a dozen small toys were arranged in a straight line. That's funny. I thought. I knew that I hadn't done that and it was hard to imagine my 70 year old professor friend who owned the house doing that. Maybe the workmen had needed access to the attic and had decided to take a break and had been really bored and made the little line of toys.

The cats never adjusted to the house, it seemed. They never changed their odd sleeping habit. These cats were very laid back, "crash experts" who before had slept anywhere and everywhere.

I moved from the house and thought nothing more of it. After graduation, I opened a metaphysical/folklore bookstore on the main street in town. People would often come in with ghost stories and the like. One day a man came in and said that he and his roommates really needed help. They had rented a house and had seen a full apparition of a woman in a long dress with a high collar with her hair in a bun on the stairs. She did not look pleased. They were hearing noises at night and were very uneasy most of the time. Well, where is the house? I asked... Sure enough, it was the house where I had lived alone where the cats had been so uneasy. The man went on to explain that they had painted the walls bright purple and had a lot of parties, there. I wondered if the sort of school marmish ghost had not really objected much to my quiet occupancy and that perhaps this was why I never saw her or heard any noises, but the wild life that the group of young men brought perhaps did not appeal to her. I did recommend sage to them but in the end, my professor friend said that it had been too much to handle for them and that they had broken their lease and left. He was completely skeptical of the whole affair and thought that they had invented a tale just to break their lease.

I once saw an episode of A Haunting set in Ireland where the ghost there was fond of placing the toys in the child's room in a row on in a circle on the floor. It made me think back to the odd arrangement of toys we had found in the attic that day.

The cats knew she was there, but she didn't seem to feel the need to make her presence known to me. I guess I was "behaving".

Other hauntings by Zander

Hauntings with similar titles

Find ghost hunters and paranormal investigators from Ohio

Comments about this paranormal experience

The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, Zander, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
12 years ago (2012-05-26)
Logan---thank you. I don't believe I ever thanked you for your kind reception of my tales those two years back. Am looking forward to reading your tales as well. Cheers.
HardToScare432 (1 stories) (72 posts)
12 years ago (2011-06-24)
Oh! Different than what I thought out in my mind, but I understand now. Not quite the 'praying' my cats tend to do but still likewise with the 'crash experts'.

P.S. I'm both embarrassed and humoured by what I had written haha 😆! It's funny how you can be only about one year older and find stupid and silly things that you've did!
bandet888 (86 posts)
13 years ago (2010-08-22)
HardToScare432 I think she ment that their paws were covering their eyes like they were trying to hide. It didn't occur to me that they might be praying but who knows
bandet888 (86 posts)
13 years ago (2010-08-22)
Sorry I took so long to answer your question. Basically I gave up looking. But my father has money in the bank and my family helped me on the funeral expensives.
Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
13 years ago (2010-08-01)
Hi hardtoscare,
Thanks for reading my story. The cats had their paws extended like... The sphinx but with its head down... Does that make sense?
HardToScare432 (1 stories) (72 posts)
13 years ago (2010-07-31)
What you said about your cats have there front paws covering there face, do you mean so it looks like the little kitty angels are praying? 😊 My cat does that sometimes. And when you said 'crash experts' my cat is one too. He walks anywhere and literally flops down! Haha
Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
13 years ago (2010-07-01)
Hi Bandet,

Did you have any luck finding your insurance info?

About the cats during the day--actually, they slept a lot during the day in that odd position as well, so they were exhibiting that strange behaviour day and night.
bandet888 (86 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-30)
Just out of curiosity how did your cats act during the day? Were there any rooms your cats would not enter? I read a story where a woman had a cat that was scared of a guys room. She was living with her boyfriend and five other guys. I wondered what the guy thought of his own room. But she says nothing of the guy that lives in the room. She just describes her cats behavior.
chopis (78 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-15)
Hi there,

I love cats too, I have one that has lived with us for 12 years now, we brought her to Canada all the way from Mexico, (I always say that it's the most expensive cat in Canada! 😜), she's very smart and loving, and yes, we know she sees things, one day she was sleeping with my son and scared him to dead by hissing and miauing to something in the closet, of course my son just took the cat and ran out of his room into mine, very brave kid, didn't forget the cat! 😉
Thanks for the story,

Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-10)
Bandet, if I were you, I would start calling all of the local insurance companies with your father's IDs in hand and see which company carries it that way.

And/or watch the mail for a premium bill to come, or, if he was not self-employed, check with his workplace and ask them what life insurance they provided, there.

Don't delay. There could be a time limit on claiming it.

In a book I read by a fellow known as "Konstantinos" or somesuch, he claimed that once in the spirit world, finance and whatnot seems like a non-reality to them. He explained it that whatever they imagine they can create so that they do not have need of monetary instruments. Evidently, they may forget how much we do need such, though not always.

Try the practical, worldly means to find it, all the same.
bandet888 (86 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-10)
I think I'm one of those people who may be paranormaly challenged (I've never experienced anything paranormal although once I've seen a pair of boots on my bed posts then were gone as a kid but I think it was just a hallucination). My father passed away last october and had life insurance but our house is such a mess I can't find them. My family helped me with the cost of funural. I wish my father can tell me where they are. I found him dead on the basement floor as he was cleaning the floor. I wished he asked me to di it. But there's nothing out of the ordinary with my basement (although I don't like going down there because of what happened). I can sometimes talk to my father in my dreams but I think I'm just dreaming about it as my "dream" father cannot tell me where the papers are.
Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-09)
Hi Bandet,

Thanks for your comment.😉

The toys were left their by the previous owner, I presume. Along with a few boxes in the attic, there. I'm glad nothing happened to me. I do believe in spooks! I do, I do! As the old saw goes. Fascinated by them but don't mind if I don't have direct contact with them ever again, if you know what I mean.

Now when it comes to departed loved ones, I would welcome contact or guidance from them anytime. I find that they tend to do that in dreams, and in the dream, after pining away for them, I am very nonchalant like "oh, hi". My sister says that it's no wonder since it's normal for them to still be in our life. The abnormal part is that they're gone in our waking reality. So my nonchalance may stem from being in a normal situation again, i.e. With them still [again] in my life.
bandet888 (86 posts)
13 years ago (2010-06-09)
It is funny nothing happened to YOU other than the toy arrangement and your cats acting scared. I would have assumed that whoever put the toys in the attic was the one that decided to arrange the toys in a line for some reason.
DannyBruise (9 stories) (125 posts)
14 years ago (2010-03-02)
The one thing I find interesting about your story is about the cats. When my brother and my sister were younger, we would bring home stray cats, my mother would freak. Even as an adult, my mother despised cats. It wasn't but a few weeks, after I left home as an adult that the first thing I did was adopt cats. I've always loved the astute attention cats have to things we humans don't sense. There are so many times that my cats suddenly respond to something in the room. Sometimes I smile and think they're chasing lint. Yet, there have been many times when one of my cats will sense I'm distressed and comfort me. I love cats.
jazzeyjay (3 stories) (215 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-26)
Zander: You are absolutely right. I watched A Haunting in Ireland again and you are very right about the toys being lined up. I stand corrected.

MsAngelsndemons: I'm sorry, but you are speaking of The Hauted. This is the show that comes on the Animal Planet and is showing how animals see and sense things we don't, but the show we're speaking of is A Haunting and it comes on the Discovery Channel and also on the Investigation Discovery Channel or ID Channel too.
MsAngelsndemons (guest)
14 years ago (2010-02-25)
I know that everyone has been saying this but I'm a fan of A haunting too. For those of you who don't know it's a show about how animals see ghosts. It comes on, on Animal Planet Channel. People should check it out. 😳
dreamergal72 (6 stories) (793 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-24)
Hi Zander I also a Haunting fan too I watch them in the afternoon and yeah I know what you talk about put toys in the middle of the floor yeah I seen that show and that really diffrent happen that you seen up in the attic.
Diyanuh (2 stories) (39 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-24)
Dude, I saw that episode of A Haunting! Good thing you left! God bless you.
Zander (7 stories) (138 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-24)
Hi JazzeyJay,

Thank you for your kind comments.

Actually, if you watch the 'A Haunting' episode set in Ireland again carefully, you will see that the ghost arranging toys in a pattern on the floor in the infant's room is indeed one its spooky pranks. 😊
jazzeyjay (3 stories) (215 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-23)
Hey Zander, thanks for your story. I am an A Haunting fan too and I think the story you are talking about where the spirit would put the toys in a circle and line them up is Sallie's House which took place in Atchison, Kansas. I Saw A Haunting in Ireland as well and it was a trip too!

You're right about the cats. They see, feel and hear things that we can't. They know when people are around before human's do.

I can see why the lady showed herself to the wild young men and not to you. She was trying to interact with them and let them know that she did not approve of what they were doing in her home. You can imagine some of the things that must have been happening at those party's. I'm happy you were able to move out. Have you had anymore paranormal activities since you moved, or are your cats back to normal?

Thanks again!
Gizmo (1 stories) (22 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-23)
Wow... That really is something...
There's something about this story that makes it believable. I also had an experience with moving toys, it was really scary but as time passes I forgot. Good thing you were behaving... 😉
DeviousAngel (11 stories) (1910 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-23)
Thank you for sharing your story! Definitely sounds believable to me, particularly because you had someone else back up your theory before you even had the chance to investigate. Spooky!
Miracles51031 (39 stories) (4999 posts) mod
14 years ago (2010-02-23)
Hey Zander, I'm from Southern Ohio. Just wondering where this story took place. I've enjoyed reading you're postings. They are very well written and, unlike some I've read, believable. Would love to read more.

logan (3 stories) (222 posts)
14 years ago (2010-02-23)
Hey Zander,

Thanks for sharing, have been reading all yor experiencs that you posted today:)

You have been on the job for a while now...:)

Look forward to more stories from you.


To publish a comment or vote, you need to be logged in (use the login form at the top of the page). If you don't have an account, sign up, it's free!

Search this site: