Oscar, a 2-year-old house cat at Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Providence, Rhode Island, has foretold the deaths of more than 25 residents.
When Oscar curls up on a patient’s bed and stays there, the staff knows it’s time to call the family. It usually means the patient has less than four hours to live. The cat lives among patients with severe dementia in an end-state ward where death is common. The facility treats people with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Oscar’s uncanny prophecies are described in today’s New England Journal of Medicine, in an article by geriatrician David Dosa of Brown University.