Within the annals of the paranormal and cryptozoology there are certainly some rather far-out reports of various humanoid entities of all shapes and sizes. We have Bigfoot, Werewolves, Dogmen, Sheepsquatch, reptilian beasts, aquatic humanoids, and many, many others, all populating the fringe of our understanding. Joining these ranks of the outlandishly weird are reports of what can only be described as Cat People, mysterious figures who take on a mixture of human and feline features, and which roam the borderlands between the strange and the totally otherworldly.
Perhaps the most interesting and more bizarre series of encounters related to Cat People is a sequence of sightings that occurred in the rural area of Wicomico County, in the U.S. state of Maryland in 1980. The creature in this case has been supposedly spoken of by the Native people of this land for centuries, and is usually described as a sort of man-beast, bipedal although sometimes loping about on all fours, covered with hair, and with decidedly feline features, including pointed ears, a cat-like face, and graceful, lithe body. It is mostly said to be a feral, wild beast that is very aggressive and does not take kindly to intruders into its hunting grounds, yet is this all merely folklore or is there more to it?
The first known account in modern times of this particular creature is typically said to have occurred in the fall of 1980, when a group of four young witnesses parked out along a dark, desolate area near the Wicomico County landfill one evening. It is not really clear what exactly had brought them to this isolated place, but what is known is that at some point one of them alerted the others to a pair of luminous yellow eyes peering in through the window. At the time they immediately started the car and roared away, but in the aftermath after they had calmed down they felt bold enough to get together some more friends and actually go back in search of whatever it was they had seen.
There were two cars this time, and they parked in such a way as for their headlights to push back the dark and illuminate the area as much as possible, after which they sat back and waited. Probably not many of them took it very seriously, this being for some of them more of a scary little game than anything else, but if there were any doubts they were soon erased when about an hour later something was seen crouching out on the periphery of where light brushed against darkness. As they looked on, the hunched over shadowy figure stood up on two feet to reveal a long, sinewy frame, took a few steps, and then reverted back to all fours as it gracefully crept forward out of the night, slowly coming into more focus as it did so.
The startled onlookers could quickly see that this was no human being, nor any other known animal for that matter, and that it was covered with coarse fur, had wickedly long claws, a long, thin tail, and a face that seemed to be a mixture of human and feline features with glowing yellow eyes set within it. Things got rather tense very quickly, when the anomalous being began to break out into a loping run towards them, eliciting panicked screams from the group and desperate attempts to start up their cars. As they did this, the beast purportedly grabbed and scratched at one of the vehicles and bashed its fist against the side, and when the car had started and tried to pull away it ran after them while unleashing a high pitched, bloodcurdling scream. They were able to outpace it in their vehicles, and after they were far away they were able to inspect the car that had been attacked to find deep gashes in the metal and paw prints on the windows.
An investigation of the site was launched by authorities, but no sign was found of what they had described. In the days after this account there were some other unverifiable reports of seeing something similar lurking out in the forests of the area, as well as maimed deer carcasses found along trails near the Wicomico River that had been mysteriously mangled by something big and powerful, but this is the only good reported sighting of the cat creature. What was it and is this the same monstrosity spoken of in Native lore? It is hard to say.
While very curious, this is not even the only case of cat-like humanoids seen, and another account was reported by a Reddit user who claims that an acquaintance had an encounter with strange cat-like beings in spring of 2005 near Sonora, California, in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The witness apparently was out in the yard of her home putting out laundry when she looked out around the edge of a garage on the property to check on her kids, who were playing not too far away. This was when she saw something quite bizarre indeed, of which the poster says:
It was at this moment, a small head, exactly like the shape of a cat, and a humanoid body peeked around the corner of the garage. The witness froze, as did the entity. The entity immediately made an expression like "oh!" And it's eyes widened. That's when the witness noticed the ears on its head stood straight up, all in proportion to the rest of its body. The cat person was approx. 5' 7", had beautiful stripes on its fur, much like tabby cats do. She was white and orange with dark black markings on her face. However, this cat person had clothes that were form fitting, much like a latex type clothing would be, and dark in color. It showed that the entity had breasts like a woman, and arms and legs proportional to any normal woman. The witness felt that she could feel this entities' emotions, and felt that this was a young lady of this race, who by accident let the witness see her.
The witness says that the entity had a surprised look on its face, much like the witness, and may have been taken aback by the sudden appearance, as it then slinked back along the wall it peeked out from. The witness felt like it was gone, and although curious, did not go outside for several hours later, to allow it time to make a safe retreat. Of course the creature was gone when she went to see where the entity stood. The eyes were almond shaped and an emerald green color, very beautiful the witness remembered. She did not feel threatened in any way by the creature, but she felt that she had some connection to this creature. She felt its surprise reaction, she felt she knew what the being was; its age, that she was seeing it by accident, making her conclude that this being was telepathic.
Interestingly, California has another similarly odd report form two joggers who were out along a trail in the same general vicinity when they were forced to pause by a shrill cry coming from the surrounding wilderness. It was a bone-chilling sound the likes of which neither one of them had ever heard before. They froze and listened, and that was when what they at first took to be a mountain lion came padding out onto the trail. This was quite scary enough as it is, but then it stood up on two feet, staring at them with a face described as “a mix between cougar and human.” The long arms of the figure were equipped with rather formidable looking claws, and although the two hikers were already about to run away as fast as they could they were sped along their way by another of those ear piercing screaming shrieks.
Are these shape-changers of some sort? Perhaps even something akin to the powerful shapeshifting black magician Skinwalkers of Native lore? Our next account seems to suggest this possibility, and comes from the site True Horror Stories of Texas. The rather outlandish account comes from a witness in San Marcos, Texas, who says:
I drive the same route almost everyday to drop off our daughter at her babysitter’s house on my way to work. I see the same things and people in her neighborhood on a daily basis. Usually I catch sight of an old lady going for her daily walk, an older gentleman working on his lawn, and sometimes, an unusually dressed woman, that is an owner of an equally conspicuous home on an otherwise sleepy drive.
She is also the owner of a black cat and dog and one of the oddest first memories of her was during a nasty storm a few years ago. I remember seeing her standing outside in this torrential rain storm dressed like Walter Mercado with her two pets unfazed by the downpour.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago and I’m doing our usual drop off. I was backing out of the driveway when I saw the lady’s cat a little up the road from the driveway. The cat can be a bit of a jerk and lay in the middle of the road like he owns it so I prepared well in advance to slow down and go around him like I have done from time to time over the years.
I’m staring at the cat when he suddenly began to blur while everything else in my line of sight remained clear. A split second later I see a tall lanky stranger with long black hair standing exactly where the cat was. He proceeded to casually cross the road towards an alley and vanish from my sight as I continued driving. I didn’t get any bad vibes from him and haven’t seen him nor the cat since this curious incident occurred.
Was this a Skinwalker, a ghost, or something else? Another quite odd account comes from a Reddit thread on humanoid encounters. There is no information given on when this happened or what age the witness was at the time, but he says that it was when he was “younger” and happened right in his own home. He claims that one day he was in his kitchen when he looked at the kitchen’s entrance and saw something “sneak past,” of which he would say:
It looked like a person covered in short hair brindle (like a boxer dog) fur from head to toe, with cat ears on top. I only got a side look of it's face, didn't see it's eyes, but it's nose was also human but covered in the same fur. It was about 5'5 give or take, it was close to my mothers height, it was thin like a person of that size. I knew as soon as I saw it, it had come from my room. As a kid seeing it had scared me, but I didn't get any bad feelings from it. No, I felt it was sneaking away from my room, and to leave our apartment. Like it was scared of something, and me seeing it wasn't really meant to be seen, but it didn't care that I had, it just wanted out. So I stayed in the Kitchen, and ate my sandwich, scared to leave for a little while. I mean I just saw a cat like human. However I did leave and stayed in the living room, where it would have had to walk thought once passing the kitchen to leave. Now I felt something far more dangerous down the hall in my room. When my mom woke up I told her, she didn't believe me, or didn't want to, for reasons I might share at a later date. Either way for several days I didn't want to be in my room, to sleep or play. It felt like something was waiting in there for me, and for the right moment to strike. I know during that time, I had my door left wide open when I was forced to bed, I didn't sleep, I waited for my parents to go to bed so I could leave, to sleep in the living room. Whatever had pushed the cat person out, I felt it was waiting for me to close my door at night and fall asleep in my room. It was about two weeks before the danger that I felt in my room had passed/left.
So far these cases seem to fall into the categories of cryptids, shape-changers, and other paranormal entities, but still other reports of Cat People more suggest alien beings from another world. One such account was given by the paranormal researcher Albert Rosales to the Phantoms and Monsters website. The encounter supposedly happened at North Port, in Sarasota County, Florida, in the summer of 2012, and the witness says that she was at a beach in the area when she noticed two very bizarre figures not far away. One of them was a man, the other a woman, and both were dressed in heavy one piece suits and helmets that were unseasonable beachwear to say the least.
The witness says that the only thing that wasn’t covered was the faces, and that they looked like those of cats, only without fur. The beings apparently telepathically reached out to the witness, and she knew immediately that they were from another planet. The two odd cat-like beings then entered the water and began swimming out into the nighttime waters, disappearing from view to never be seen again. A similarly bizarre account of what seems to have been some sort of feline alien was posted on the site Above Top Secret, and was allegedly seen on several occasions in the vicinity of Cordoba, Spain, in 1972. The first encounter was made by a man named Teodoro Merlo, 56, who was a maintenance man of the Ika-Renault factory in town. He apparently entered the washroom of the factory and saw a strange humanoid of around 8 feet in height sitting casually upon a washbasin, wearing a dark blue one-piece garment tight at the wrists. The creature was apparently very pale, and had a very cat-like countenance, with pointed ears, a small triangular nose, feline eyes, and a high forehead, as well as brownish marks on the cheeks. Not long after this sighting the witness supposedly suffered from headaches and back pain. On that same day Merlo also made the weird sighting of the exact same entity in the rearview mirror of the bus he was riding home, although it quickly vanished.
The same creature would then be seen by a different witness at the factory, this time an Enrique Moreno, who was delivering documents when he had his run in with the bizarre. He was driving his motorcycle around the plant when he apparently saw “a sort of rainbow very near the ground,” shortly after which he came across an unusually tall and lanky figure standing there in his path. As the witness drew near, it turned to face him, and he could see that it was 8 feet tall and had “had eyes like yellow light bulbs, ears that rose above the skull in a point, a square chin, and a slit-like mouth.” It was mostly described as having a very cat-like face, and was dressed in a one-piece, tight-fitting coverall of luminescent bluish green. Moreno was then overcome by an overwhelming itching sensation all over his body, and his ears were accosted by a droning hum. His motorcycle then apparently took on a life of its own and drove him all the way back to his office. He too would suffer from myriad health problems such as headaches, burning eyes, and anomalous pains throughout his body after this ordeal.
These cases have certainly run the gamut of odd encounters of cat-like humanoids, and there is probably no one explanation that would fit them all. We are simply left with an array of accounts that do not comfortably mesh with the typical fare of cryptozoology, UFOlogy, or the paranormal. Cryptids, shapeshifters, aliens, interdimensional beings, what were these things and where did they come from? We will probably never know the answers, but they are certainly amongst the more bizarre accounts out there.