Frequently Asked Questions
When is the best time to visit?
It depends on what you want. Cats are most active and needy in the morning so if you want to play with them, 10am is the best. They get active around lunch (12 noon) and also after 2pm. If you like to cuddle with cats, they have a nap around 1-2pm so that is the best time. If you are lucky, they might sleep on your lap!
Can I bring my cat?
No. That would be upsetting to everyone. Cats are territorial so your cat would most likely not want to visit ours, and ours would not appreciate cat visitors. We are very careful when we introduce a new cat to the current café cats. We give them time to see and smell each other without being able to fight and allow the new cat to come gradually into the café area.
Why do I have to pay a door charge/entry fee?
That money goes to pay for the cats’ food, shelter and veterinary care. The Hospitality and Retail sides of the business do not make enough profit to do this. We are not a charity and we do not have tax exempt status or government funding. If we do receive a donation, we cannot give you a receipt to help you get a tax deduction, but we do keep a separate account so that we can be as transparent about it as possible.
Where do the cats come from?
We have worked with several, small rescue groups who bring us the cats they feel will best thrive in the café atmosphere. This allows them to focus more of their time and resources on the more timid cats in their care. Rescue is hard and we are super grateful to those who make it possible for the cats to come to us. Some of our cats come from private individuals who can follow our protocol. We have to meet the cat in their home to see if the cat is friendly to strangers. We have to check the cat for medical problems that are contagious or unmanageable in a café situation. We have to have unconditional surrender.
Do you work with the SPCA?
Although we do not get cats from the SPCA, we have worked with them on our care and cleaning routines to make sure that they are in line with best practice.
There is a troublesome cat in my neighbourhood.
Can you help me get rid of it?
Probably not. There is a long procedure to follow in order to make sure that the cat is not harmed. First, does the cat belong to anyone in the area? We cannot simply take people’s cats. You might have to talk to all your neighbours to determine if the cat is owned by someone.
IF the cat is truly stray, then we have to ensure that we have a plan to care for it. This part can take a long time as we organize fosters and vet care. We also need to be sure the plan includes provision for the case in which the cat cannot be socialised. We do not have any experience with this, so we refer it to people who do.
My cat just had kittens. Will you take them?
Probably. This will be on a case by case basis. In any case, you will have to keep them with their mother until they are three months old. You should have a definite plan to get the mother cat spayed as soon as possible. We want to ensure that as many cats as possible are desexed so they cannot reproduce. You will have to surrender the kittens unconditionally.
My situation makes it difficult to care for my cat.
Will you take it?
Probably. This will be on a case by case basis. In any case it will be necessary for you to follow our protocol. We have to meet the cat in their home to see if the cat is friendly to strangers. We have to check the cat for medical problems that are contagious or unmanageable in a café situation. We have to have unconditional surrender.
Why don’t you allow children under the age of seven to enter?
Our cats let us know that this was necessary. Many of them would scatter and hide when they saw children enter because they were having bad experiences with some. It is not the fault of children or caregivers that children are still learning empathy, and self-control. Even the most attentive care givers are not fast enough to stop natural behaviours like grabbing and pulling. Reminders to use soft voices are also ineffective in younger children simply because they get excited and forget.
Although we know that all children develop differently, we had to draw a line and children age seven and up are generally able to follow instruction from strangers, understand and obey rules and have good control over their bodies so that they can be gentle. We do offer courses for children aged 5-6 in which they can prove their ability to understand instruction and control themselves around cats. Those children who do, earn a badge which allows them to enter with their caregiver.
Do the cats ever fight?
Yes. Sometimes. They get along fairly well because we set up the environment in ways that help this such as giving the cats lots of places to escape and ways to access what they need without another cat blocking it. We introduce cats carefully, allowing them to see and smell each other a while without coming into contact. Then the new cat can come into the general cat area at its own pace. We do all this, but sometimes they still do fight. That is because it is natural for them to do so. They need to establish their hierarchies which are often based on physical dominance. Cats usually stop this type of fighting once they can tell which cat is stronger. Some “fights” are even part of their play and can show that they have a good relationship.
How does the adoption process work?
Find more about our adoption process here.
How do you decide which application is the ‘best match’ for a cat?
We observe the new cats for a month as we accept applications. During that time, we pay attention to how they interact with other cats and the various customers and staff. A cat that doesn’t interact well with other cats should not go to a home where there is already one or more in residence. A cat that hides when children come in should not necessarily go to a home where there are children or are likely to be children. We also try to see how the cat interacts with the applicant and family. It helps if the applicant comes to see the cat more than once, but we understand this is difficult for some, so it is not necessary.
What if my landlord won’t allow cats?
Can I still adopt?
We always call landlords to make sure that a cat is allowed on the rental property. We will not adopt when a landlord or a body corporate says they are not allowed.
What if I am still living in my parents’ home?
Can I still adopt?
We will make sure that parents or primary care givers are the ones responsible for the ultimate care of the cat. This means they will have to be the ones to sign or co-sign the adoption papers.
What if my flat mates and I want to adopt a cat together?
We want one person to take primary responsibility for the care of the cat. Flatting arrangements can change, and we want to be sure that the cat has a definite care giver.
What if I want an indoor only cat?
We totally support that. Many of our cats have never lived outdoors and would be ideal for an indoor only life. Just mention it when you are looking, and we will let you know which cats/kittens are suited for this.