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Deer Women

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Deer woman

Artist's Rendering

Deer Women, sometimes known as Deer Ladies, are shape-shifting women in Native American mythology, in and around Oklahoma, The Western United States and The Pacific Northwest. They allegedly appear at various times as an human woman, or a young beautiful maiden, or a deer. Some descriptions assign her a human female upper body and the lower body of a white-tailed deer.

The Deer Women are said to sometimes be seen as beautiful women just off the trail or behind a bush, calling to men to come over.

Deer Women are often said to have all the features of a normal young woman, except their feet are shaped like deer hooves and their eyes are deer's brown color. Men who are lured into the deer women's presence often notice too late that they are not natural women and are then are stomped to death. Other stories and traditions describe the sighting of Deer Woman to be a sign of personal transformation or a warning. Deer Women are also said to be fond of dancing, and will sometimes join a communal dance unnoticed leaving only when the drum beating ceases.

According to Ojibwe tradition, they can be banished through the use of tobacco and chant. Others say that you can break their spell by looking at their feet, which are in fact hooves. Once they are recognized for what they are, the Deer women will run away.

Popular Culture

Deer Women were featured as a character in an eponymous episode of the Showtime horror series Masters of Horror. It originally aired in North America on December 9, 2005 and was directed by John Landis, who is best known for his direction of the 1981 film An American Werewolf in London.

Cabela's Survival: Shadows of Katmai features a couple levels where the Deer Women are told of. Jonah, one of the characters, talks about this spirit. Logan, the main protagonist in which the player occupies, supposedly hears her below a very tall, steep cliff. As the player descends the treacherous cliffs, he finds that it is not the Deer Woman, but a doctor named Karen that somehow, nearly impossibly, survives the plane crash with Logan, and, also impossibly, survives a fall from a cliff that looks like it reaches to the heavens.

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