You may have heard of cat cafes, that is where someone can go, for a small fee, and visit with cats. According to Wiki, the first Cat Cafe was open in 1998 in Taiwan but they didn’t really become popular until 2004 when one opened in Japan. For those that have room for pets and have pets, a place where you pay to visit with a cat might sound weird. But when you think about it, it is not really any different from a petting zoo. And for some reason people think of petting zoos as completely normal. Again . . . think about it . . .it is much more “normal” to pet a cat than to pet a pig or a goat. So cat cafes make a lot of sense. They can be great for people who enjoy the company of a cat, but don’t have room. Or perhaps their present living situation is temporary and so they are not wanting to get a forever pet. It could be that they love cats, but live with someone who is allergic to them. There are many reasons a place that has cats you can visit is a good idea. There are Cat Cafes in Japan, Canada, Europe, and the United States. So . . . if you are inclined you might be able to find one near you. If you are near me, I can point one out to you. The Dancing Cat is in San Jose and is open for your pleasure.
For those of you that read my blog and/or know me . . . you probably picked up on how the name is very attractive to me. I mean the DANCING Cat.
I don’t know about the OTHER cat cafes, but The Dancing Cat is a temporary home to cats that are up for adoption. Every cat you see can be adopted. It is my thinking that visiting a cat in a nice relaxed atmosphere gives you a better chance to see the cat you are actually getting. I know some kitties might not act different from their true selves in a shelter or store, but I imagine most do. They might be scared or even just a little more cautious or reserved. Whereas in a little shop where they have run of the place you possibly get to see their actual personality.
At this writing the Dancing Cat plans to stay open only until August. I quizzed one of the co-owners on what it would take to keep it open longer and I think they are still working on what exactly they would need. But in the meantime they could use people visiting the cafe and paying the small fee of $10.00 per hour. They could use volunteers to help with the duties that come along with keeping a home for cats. As with most places they also accept flat out donations. So, if you are interested and able to do any of those things, please don’t hesitate. As I said, it it only around for a couple of months. Perhaps with support they will be able to make it a more permanent adventure.
This past Thursday was the year anniversary of our cat’s death. I am sure I am not alone in feeling that it is difficult to get a new pet – a new child. Spot was such a good kitty. Yesterday I went to visit the Dancing Cat and got so much good cat ju-ju. Cats are amazing animals. For over an hour I played with six cats. Not all six for the entire time, but I was able to interact with each one at least once. Cats are so fun to watch. Cats are so amazing with their concentration and their acrobatics. There were more than six at the facility, but four were off sleeping for most of the time. Two of the “sleepers” were actually awake, but in the quiet area of the cafe. When I went to peek in on them they were more than willing to present a belly for rubs.
The facility is so super cute. The two women running the show really did a nice job of making it a comfortable place for the cats and their admirers. They have free coffee and tea available. They even have a few snacks that you can purchase. They have a few items of merchandise you might be interested in. And they have cats. They definitely have cats. As I mentioned, there were 10 cats there, ranging from 10 months to 4 1/2 years (I believe). The cats DO get adopted so that information could change by the time you read this. So far they have adopted out 21 cats. Can you imagine what they could do as word gets out? They could end up pairing off dozens of cats with cat lovers.
Ann, one of the women who opened the shop, excitedly told me that the adoptions that have happened so far were perfect pairings. The cats and the people/families matched up well. This is a very important thing when adopting out or adopting a pet. It needs to work. Personalities need to be mesh-able. So, that is why I think a Cat Cafe is awesome. Cats and people get to meet and get to know each other a bit before committing
I really enjoyed my visit and that is the reason I am posting this. I asked if I could write a post to share what is going on and that is what I am doing. I hope, if cats are something that interest you, that you will go visit and socialize with the wonderful cats and wonderful people who are there!
What do you think of Cat Cafes? Would you visit a cafe if there was one near you?