While walking back to the subway in Busan after a really good Japanese hamburger steak dinner Josh and I happened to stumble across a cat cafe! Of course we had heard of cat cafes and seen various cafes when travelling through the city, but this was the first time we found ourselves in front of a cat cafe with no plans…so we went to the cat cafe!
The idea of the cat cafe is pretty fun, a cafe has a selection of cats which you can play with while sipping on overprices beverages. However, the actual follow through of the cafe itself can really vary depending on location. The cafe we stumbled upon charged an additional $2 per person for entry and then we were given a small bowl of wet food to win over some cats. When entering the cat area you are required to use hand sanitizer and wear slippers (with cats on them of course). There were various toys and walkways for the cats (even a special walkway on the roof for the cats to run around on). Although the facility seemed clean and the cats had an ample supply of dry food and water, there was no real special care taken for the cats. This particular location also sold the kittens that were running around, and I got the vibe that there was probably some inbreeding happening as all of the kittens seemed to look the same. On top of this there was one poor Persian cat whose fur was filled with knots (lucky for us our Korean friend who was with us made sure to tell the owner of the cafe he needed to get that cat groomed).
So, we played with the cats and made sure to feed to old ones most of the wet cat food (you can tell that most people just want to play with the kittens and ignore the older, less interested cats), and then left. I have to say the cat cafe was kind of a disappointment and I don’t know if I could bring myself to go to another one. But, that opinion is also highly influenced by the fact that I am really allergic to cats.
I will say though…if I ever come across a dog cafe, all bets are off!