Cat Cafés have sprung up all over the world, growing very quickly in popularity here in the United States just in the last few years. These for-profit business have a philanthropic mission to help get more cats adopted by having shelter cats at the café for people to interact with, and possibly adopt. One Cat Café has taken a different approach with an incredible outcome.
Cat Town Café, which opened in 2014 is a non-profit cat café located at 2869 Broadway, Oakland, California.
“I was a volunteer at Oakland Animal Services – Oakland’s municipal shelter – and there wasn’t a rescue organization who helped cats who appear unadoptable because they are scared in a shelter environment,” Founder Ann Dunn told iHeartCats. “Our founding mission was to save the cats from OAS who would otherwise be euthanized – cats who are stressed, shy, older or have medical needs.”
When Cat Town was founded in 2011, it was a 501(c)(3) non-profit foster program. They partnered with the OAS to get as many cats into people’s homes as they could. But the problem was, when the shelter was full, they would start to euthanize. That’s when the idea of the cat café came to be:
“We started the cafe to get as many cats out of cages as possible, to buy time for cats at greatest risk,” she said.