Animal cafe

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An animal cafe, also known as a pet cafe, is a place where people can see and interact with various animals such as cats, dogs, rabbits, goats, owls, or sheep while they enjoy the food and drinks.[1] The first animal cafe was established in Taiwan in 1998.[2] The concept of this cafe was a cat which is very popular and familiar. Since the cat cafe was established, a number of cafes for various animals have shown up.



The first animal cafe was created in Taiwan in 1998 which has the concept of a cat.[2] Although animal cafes originated in Taiwan, they were initially popularized in Japan. One Japanese tourist visited Taiwan and discovered the potential of animal cafe. Then he came back to Japan and established the first animal cafe in Osaka in 2004.[3] Nowadays, Japan is known as the country which has the most animal cafes in the world. Although there are some countries in Europe and America which also have animal cafes such as Spain, Germany, France, United States, Australia. United Kingdoms etc., animal cafes are still more popular in Asian countries yet.[3] When the animal cafe was first created in Taiwan and Japan, it was mainly for people who just want to spend the time with animals. However, there are also several animal cafes for abandoned or lost animals these days as well. Such animal cafes are used as a way to help these abandoned or lost animals by providing them not only home and food but also opportunity to be adopted by customers of the cafe.[4]


As individuals prefer different animals, there are a number of various animal cafes in the world.

Cat cafe[edit]

Laika ac Cat Cafe

Due to the fact that the first animal cafe was a cat cafe in Taiwan, cat cafe is one of the most common animal cafe. A cat café is like a basic animal cafe which can be found easily especially in Asian countries South Korea, Taiwan and Japan. A number of different types of cats can be found at the cat cafe. Normally it separates the play area where people can play with cats and regular area where people just drink and eat food without cats.[5]

Some of cat cafes create a good interaction between cats and humans. some of cat cafes look after and feed cats who were stray cats or abandoned by people.[3] Cat cafes provide those cats home, food and affection. Also, customers who visit a cat cafe regularly and are interested in raising cats can be potential adopters of cats. Cat cafe's staffs try to find a perfect adopter for cats.[3]

Dog cafe[edit]

Dog cafe is another very common animal cafe that can be found easily. People who like dogs would enjoy their time with a number of different kinds of dogs at the dog cafe. Dog cafe is more active, noisy and filled with motion compared to cat cafe due to the characteristic of dogs.

Like a cat cafe, a dog cafe also provides an adoption system to customers who have an ability to raise them. The dog cafe can be seen as a sanctuary providing a good experience for customers to make a connection with abandoned dogs, and they probably adopt dogs.[6]

There is a dog cafe in Los Angeles which has the goal of finding perfect home for shelter dogs.[7] Customers enjoy the time with dogs and, potentially, become a new owner of shelter dogs.

American Eskimo Dog

Raccoon cafe[edit]


An unusual animal cafe can be found as well such as a raccoon cafe. There is a raccoon cafe in South Korea which people can play with raccoons while they drink and eat the food. Because this cafe is divided into two rooms, people can choose to play with raccoon or just enjoy their food and drinks.[8] Because raccoons have such sharp claws and teeth, there is a warning that the cafe is not responsible for any damage from raccoons.

Sheep cafe[edit]

There is a sheep cafe in South Korea which is established in 2011.This cafe is the first sheep cafe in the world which has two sheep named Sugar and Honey. It is allowed to feed them some food.[9] People can watch the sheep as they enjoy their meal. However, sheep cannot stay at the cafe during the summer season due to the weather issue.

Rabbit cafe[edit]

Rabbit cafe is located in Japan. Mostly rabbits are not wandering around like other cats and dogs at cafes but they are often kept in their cages. However, this cafe sometimes provides a chance to walk around a nearby place with rabbits.[10]

Bird cafe[edit]

There are a few different kinds of birds cafe in Japan such as owls, parrots, falcons, hawks etc.[11] They are not dangerous and do not attack people because they are well trained by the staff. The staff shows customers the way they handle and feed the birds in a safety way. Also, people can take a picture with birds if they have a permission from the staff.[12]

Reptile cafe[edit]

In Cambodia, there is a famous reptile cafe which people can see a number of different species of reptile such as turtles, snakes, iguanas, and spiders. People can relax, eat, drink and learn about a number of different species of reptile at the cafe. They can also take pictures with the variety of reptiles. The owner opened up this cafe in 2018 with the permission from Cambodia's Ministry of Forestry, Fisheries and Agriculture.[13] He regards the animal welfare as the primary concern at the cafe.

Furthermore, there are still more various animal cafes including, snake cafe, alpaca cafe, goat cafe etc. in the world.[citation needed]


Because the animal cafe is closely related to the animal issues, there has been some constant controversies about animal safety. Some animal experts say that animal cafes might provide some positive effect to animals but they are more likely to encourage people to buy animals than pay attention about animal welfare.[14] Some people argue that the way the animal cafes operate their business is really harmful for animal safety because some animals are not quite suited for the life style at the cafe.[15] Some visitors of animal cafe in Japan express their concerns for the safety and welfare of the birds.[16] They argue that there is a natural daily routine for birds but this animal cafe does not care about it. Japanese animal rights activists also argue that bird cafes abuse birds as the entertainment of humans and birds meant to fly in the sky rather than staying in the building.[17] As a result, Japanese government had made much stricter Animal Protection Law which strengths the new rules and restricts trading hours of animal cafe in order to release controversies. The stricter regulations are intended to make sure that those animals at the cafes have appropriate human treatment and care.[18]

In addition, the owner of cat cafe in Thailand was arrested by police due to the disobedience against the Animal Protection Law. Seven cats died at his cafe due to the poor safety care.[19] Also, such welfare and safety problem of animal cafe can be found in South Korea as well. For example, animals in cafe are constantly fed by people, they cannot sleep until the cafes shut the door late at night.[20] Such animal safety problems are generated due to the absence of regulation law on animal cafe in South Korea because the term "animal cafe" is just created recently. Therefore, there is no regulation law about animal cafe.[21]

Furthermore, customers who visit cat cafes are also subject to safety problems. Some customers who have gained injuries by animals at the cafe have complained about the safety policy when the person in charge of cafe argues that they do not take any responsibility for injuries.[20]


  1. ^ "Japanese Encyclopedia: Animal Cafe". Matcha – Japan Travel Web Magazine (in Japanese). Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  2. ^ a b Galloway, Lindsey. "Feline fun in Japan's cat cafes". Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  3. ^ a b c d "The Origin of Cat Cafes and Their Benefits to Cats and Humans - Bearwallowcafe". Bearwallowcafe. 2017-09-12. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  4. ^ "What are Animal Cafés?". Canidae. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  5. ^ Overell, Rosemary. "Australia's first cat cafe: stroke of genius or needless fluff?". The Conversation. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  6. ^ "9 Cutest Animal Cafes Around the World | SmarterTravel". SmarterTravel. 2017-07-20. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  7. ^ "15 Insane Animal Cafés Around the World | Food Network Canada". Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  8. ^ "Animal Cafes Around Seoul". myHUBS. 2017-04-02.
  9. ^ admin. "Thanks Nature Café - Sheep Cafe at Hongdae Seoul, For A Baa-Baa-ry Good Time -". Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  10. ^ "Nine cutest animal cafes around the world". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  11. ^ "Animal cafes". Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  12. ^ "Akiba Fukurou: Akihabara". Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  13. ^ News, A. B. C. (2018-09-08). "Inside the Cambodia coffee shop where you can hang out with reptiles". ABC News. Retrieved 2018-10-29.
  14. ^ Kerr, Millie (2017-01-03). "Conservationists get their talons out for Japan's owl cafes". The Guardian. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  15. ^ Bates, Claire (2016-09-13). "Are cat cafes good for cats?". BBC News. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  16. ^ "Owl cafes in Japan draw ire of animal safety activists". Global News. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  17. ^ Ryall, Julian (2016-09-08). "Outrage over Japan's 'owl cafés'". The Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 2018-10-15.
  18. ^ "Loosening up on animal cafes | The Japan Times". The Japan Times. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  19. ^ "Why you should stop going to animal cafes". NewsComAu. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  20. ^ a b "Wild animal cafes in Seoul operate in a risky legal blindspot". Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  21. ^ "Animal cafes remain outside legal boundaries". koreatimes. 2016-09-27. Retrieved 2018-10-29.