On a rainy, hungover Sunday last weekend, I laid in bed wondering what on earth could lighten my day and clear away my groggy head. So, naturally, I thought of food… where could I go? What could I eat? Should I try somewhere new? God knows all I wanted was to be feline good (I love the pun.)
So, I booked myself into a time slot to see the first cat café to open in Wales, which opened in autumn last year; I hadn’t tried it out yet and a cuppa with a cat on my lap seemed the perfect way to spend a morning. I headed over and was welcomed by a cheery and enthusiastic waiter or as they call themselves ‘kitty buddy’. We were firstly told all the rules of the café: no grabbing, lifting or pestering the cats whilst they were asleep or grooming. This seemed fair and I was immediately pleased to feel like this was the kind of place where the cats were a priority and I was just a guest in their home! I wandered through to the cosy café, which was intimate (hosting only up to 22 people at a time), and welcoming. Every customer chatted and laughed over our mutual love of the silly cats. I then ordered a tea and a toastie: the menu sports a range of sandwiches and toasties, as well as lots of cakes and the option to share an afternoon tea platter with a friend! There are also lots of veggie options as well as intolerance-friendly alternatives.
As this is the food and drinks section of Quench, I will do my duty in saying my tea and toastie was lovely, and the cucumber came in the shape of a cat and if that doesn’t sell it to you I’m not sure what will. The cakes also looked amaaaaazing, but sadly my stupid self-inflicted Lent restrictions did not allow me to get one but based on sight and smell I would totally recommend! Amusingly, the cats were just as keen on the food and drinks as the customers were… with cats jumping at the chance to try and grab a whiff of the sarnies and walking across your table with the sole purpose of knocking over your milk jug. But if this seems off-putting to you, worry not: the staff are quick to lift them off the table and encourage them away from your food.
Waiting for your food at a table has honestly never been so enjoyable: having cats to cuddle, play with and do photo shoots for your Snapchat with honestly makes the time spent with your belly grumbling so much more bearable. Amazingly each cat is rescued from a local rescue home, Mittens Cat Rescue, and each cat is relaxed and happy, with the owner, Hollie, ensuring she rescues cats who get along well with children and other cats and who are relaxed in temperament. She has rescued cats who are siblings (so are more comfortable together), and each cat goes through a process to determine that they are needy, but confident enough to get along in the café. Hollie even fosters them at her home first to ensure they are happy in a new environment, before introducing them to their café home. They live in the café 24/7, with burglar alarms, self-cleaning litter trays (to reduce human interference and therefore make the cats more relaxed) and oodles of comfy beds to choose from! They are living the dream with regular and structured meal times and plenty of tasty treats throughout the day.
Hollie hopes the café can be a safe haven for customers to come and be uplifted after she herself visited a cat café in London during a time she struggled with her mental health and felt the happiest and most comfortable she had in months. Kudos to Hollie for bringing this sort of happiness and love to Cardiff with nothing but good intentions for both her cats’ and customers’ good health and joy.
It is important to remember when considering making a booking with Feline Good, that if you plan on bringing a child under the age of 16 you must email beforehand to discuss with the manager the age and general behaviour of the child to ensure that it is safe for the cats. There is also a 2:1 adult to child ratio with only 2 under 16s being allowed in at a time. On a more exciting note- the café is available to hire for functions of up to 22 people (with the rule of children admittance still applying.)
You can find Feline Good at:
Or book online at their website: http://www.felinegoodcafe.com/book.html
Words by Charlotte Clark.