If you’ve never heard of such a thing as a cat cafe, you very well may be missing out on a soothing and interesting experience. Cat cafes are basically exactly what they sound like they are, places where you can go to get a cup of coffee or a cup of tea, all while enjoying the company of a few different cats. The idea is to provide a soothing environment where you can relax for a few minutes, all while introducing the therapeutic benefits of animals. Most cat cafes have one more thing going for them. The majority of them utilize homeless cats that have been rescued from a charity or a similar type of facility. Depending on how the particular cat cafe in question is operating, some of those cats may be available for adoption. Some facilities run their operation so that all the cats there are available to be adopted while others keep some of the cats there long-term and adopt others out to good homes.
London’s Newest Cat Cafe
One of the newest cat cafes, Java Whiskers, has more than just a catchy name. It’s located in the central part of London and it is truly one of the most unique facilities of its type in existence. What makes it so special? For starters, they have nine different cats that they routinely keep there. Cats with names like Jingles or Whiskers have the opportunity to peruse the entire facility and just be cats, all while milling around with whoever comes into the cafe for a cup of tea. Of course, coffee is also on the menu, hence its name. Despite the fact that the RSPCA has voiced concerns about cat cafes in general, this one operates with the strictest of rules designed to make sure that the cats are all happy and healthy. For example, no one is allowed to pet any cat that is eating, drinking or sleeping. That keeps the cats from being disturbed when they feel most vulnerable and ensures that they enjoy being around the people that come in. The facility even has a separate downstairs area that is easily accessible to the cats so that if they want to get away from everyone in general, they can do so. More often than not, the cats willingly come up to the people they see, even jumping into their laps and nuzzling them for several minutes at a time.
A Special Place
There is no doubt that Java Whiskers is a special place. They even have two house cats that live there full-time, appropriately one of them is named Whiskers. The other is called Sylvester. The cafe is open from 10 in the morning until 8 in the evening, seven days a week. They have a full menu, complete with pastries, sandwiches, and all kinds of brewed delights with cold drinks to boot. One of the things that really makes the place special is the fact that you can go on their website and see detailed information about each one of the cats that is featured there, including the house cats. As far as the seven cats that are available for adoption are concerned, many of them are currently reserved to find their forever homes, thereby leaving the door open for additional cats to be rescued. The majority of these cats either came from charities or were rescued directly off the streets, meaning that their quality of life has been dramatically improved since coming to the cat cafe.
Helping People, Too
No one would argue the fact that the cat cafe has helped these homeless cats have better lives. However, it’s not just the cats that have the opportunity to benefit from its existence. People routinely comment about how the cat cafe helps them cope with life’s daily struggles as well. This is especially true for individuals who are dealing with certain mental health issues that can make coping with daily life difficult, as well as for those individuals who are currently coping with the loss of a loved one or something similar. For many people, just being around the cats and having the opportunity to pet them can do wonders for their mental health. The truth is, it’s the only solace that some of these individuals have. You could say the same is true for the cats. In some cases, these kindred spirits strike a bond and the people end up adopting a particular cat because they’ve grown to look forward to coming in every day and seeing that particular feline.
You might think that Java Whiskers only exists in a singular location, the one previously discussed located in central London. The truth is, the individuals behind the cat cafe have been doing this for a long time. In fact, they have a very similar operation that runs under the same name, located in Sweden. As such, they have an innate understanding about what it takes to successfully run a facility of this type and they have certainly outdone themselves with every facility they’ve ever operated, including the one in London. They even have an opportunity for people to make donations to their facilities in order to help feed the cats, pay vet bills and keep the electricity on. Since they have previous experience, their newest location in London has operated very smoothly, even while dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the end of the day, who doesn’t want to have an opportunity to go grab a sandwich, have some caffeine and get the chance to pet a cat or two in the process? If that’s not enough to get you interested, consider the fact that the facility located in London is a beautiful building with a completely relaxing atmosphere. It’s almost like being in a brilliant outdoor garden, only you’re closed off from the elements so you don’t have to worry about canceling your outing because of a rainy day. It really does give both people and cats the best of both worlds.