All animals have keen senses (just ask a hunter during deer season.) Animal senses are pretty much like human senses but more acute. Their senses also vary a little in strength from species to species. Animals can sense a variety of danger. They can sense if a predator is near or when a terrible storm is approaching. But can they sense something more esoteric, like the supernatural?
Can Animals Sense the Supernatural?
Putting aside the question of whether or not ghosts actually do exist (we'll let you decide that for yourself!), a substantial number of self-professed "ghost hunters" around the world have identified certain criteria that they believe provides evidence of paranormal activity. And if so, animals with their keen senses undoubtedly have the leg up when it comes to detecting this "ghostly" evidence!
Fact or Fable?
Down through the ages, whether in fact or fable, animals were depicted as being able to sense invisible presences and unexplained activity. Dogs barked at nothing and cats stared inexplicably into empty space. Dogs and their canine sixth sense could always penetrate the deceptive tricks of the devil or detect the presence of ghostly visitors! Cats could sense much the same, including invading aliens and supernatural beings. But then again, it is well known that cats have been the favorite familiars of witches!
Smelling the Supernatural
The theory of animals sensing the supernatural is not as far-fetched as it may seem. A cats sense of smell is far superior than that of a human but a dog possesses a sense of smell that is even more acute! A dog can smell odors we couldn't ever detect. Their sense of smell is completely different from ours, so it's reasonable to conclude that paranormal activity can be detected through minute odors we couldn't possibly know exists. The dogs sense of smell has been used for detecting drugs or predicting seizures and other health problems like cancer and diabetes by sensing the faint odor change in a patient . The dog's olfactory sense has also been used for bomb detection and finding missing people. Taking all this into consideration, you may conclude that dogs have a lot of the necessary equipment in order to spot the supernatural or any wayward spirit.
Hearing the Supernatural
Professional ghost hunters use all types of amplified microphones for catching the creepy sounds a ghost may make. Cats and Dogs are naturally equipped to hear higher frequency sounds than us. Cats are capable of moving their ears independently in order to hone in on wherever the sounds originate. This aids them in sensing prey, such as rodents, but who's to say they are not hearing sounds from another realm? Attempting this feat yourself could very well have you immediately placed in a padded cell for observation!
Seeing the Supernatural
Ghost hunters also use special night vision cameras and equipment for seeing in total darkness. Dogs, and especially cats, are already equipped with this special physical feature allowing them to see in near total darkness!
Detecting Electromagnetic Fields
EMF detectors for measuring and detecting electromagnetic fields are also the tools of ghost hunters. Many people believe animals can sense this but the idea has not been widely accepted.
Atmospheric Pressure Changes
Dogs and and even humans have the ability to sense changes in atmospheric pressure. Whether it is the result of aching bunions, bones or muscles, some people just know when to expect bad weather. The same applies to animals who have learned how to read their bodily changes and apply that information to approaching danger! A haunted location could trigger this sense in animals when there is an energy change in the room resulting in goosebumps and uneasy feelings.
Maybe You're the "Ghost?"
Of course another explanation for your pet reacting weird is that your pet is reacting to you! That's right, animals can pick up subtle clues when you're feeling uneasy. The end result could stress your pet to the point of your pet becoming confused or tense.
By Tom Mateo
About the Author
Tom Matteo has been a freelance writer since 1992. He specializes in hardware and software reviews for computers and gaming systems, and occasionally writes about such topics as animal behavior and care. Tom resides in Bethlehem, PA with his wife Tina and his beloved cockapoo, Angel.