There are many ‘dog friendly’ places that have popped up over the past decade, including pubs and cafes, but what about our feline friends? 

Cat cafes have started to be introduced all around the UK – the perfect places to go if you are a cat lover. If you haven’t yet been to your local cat cafe, and are unsure what to expect, we have put together the perfect guide with a little help from Shrewsbury based cat cafe, Paws Cafe.

What are cat cafes?

A cat cafe is quite literally what the name suggests. They are independent local coffee shops, similar to any other themed cafes or restaurants, where everything has a theme of cats. However, the extra exciting thing about cat cafes is that there are pet cats enjoying the surroundings of the cafe too. 

As a customer, you are encouraged to enjoy petting and playing with the cats, whilst enjoying your beverage and perhaps even a treat of a piece of cake. However. interaction with the kitties cannot be guaranteed. Cats like to sleep for the majority of the day or may just not be in the mood to play. All cat cafes should be putting the cats’ needs first and may ask guests not to chase them, pick them up, bother them when sleeping, or use flash photography.

Where did cat cafes originate?

The first cat cafe, Cat Flower Garden, opened in 1998 in Taipei, Taiwan. While the cat cafe concept began in Taiwan, it was eventually popularised by the Japanese. Japanese visitors brought the idea home and established Japan’s first cat cafe, Neko no Jikan in Osaka in 2004. 

Tokyo’s first cat cafe opened in 2005, and the number of cat cafes has dramatically increased since then.  Asia now has over 400 cat cafes across Japan, Taiwan, China, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and Indonesia.

Europe’s first cat cafe, Cafe Neko in Vienna, opened in 2012. Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium in London has become Europe’s most famous cat cafe, having been regularly booked up since opening in 2014.  Europe is the second-largest cat café region with over 100 cat cafes currently open.

Find out where your nearest cat cafe is located here.

About Paws Cafe in Shrewsbury

Paws Cafe is located in the heart of Shrewsbury and is Shropshire’s first cat cafe. Established in 2019 by Katie and James, Paws Cafe has become increasingly popular and a big topic of discussion across Shrewsbury and the surrounding areas of North Shropshire. 

Paws Cafe is home to 11 resident cats who love spending time with visitors, old and new. Katie and James put their cats first, and their wellbeing comes first over anything else. They have a wide variety of cat species, including hairless Cleo, a Canadian sphynx, Elsa the rag doll, Blue the British shorthair, two Bengals Nala and Simba, ginger Tom Marmalade and black Tom Binx, and Snowy the white domestic short hair.

The way Paws Cafe works is that they charge for a pre-booked time slot, which comes with complimentary drinks. They also sell a range of cakes, brownies and biscuits that cater towards Vegan, Vegetarian and Gluten Free diets.

You can book a time slot at Paws Cafe here.

Rachel Smith
Rachel Smith is a huge animal lover and has always been passionate about the wellbeing of pets. She currently has a rescue dog, Stewie and a corn snake, Samson, but has experience of looking after various different pets over the years.

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