What could possibly be a better combination than coffee and cats? That was the idea behind the Humane Society of Huron Valley (HSHV) when they opened Tiny Lions Lounge & Adoption Center in May of this year. Over a dozen cats roam free through the café while patrons drink coffee, talk, or just hang out with the furry hosts.
Tiny Lions is located in Ann Arbor, Mich. and is open to the public six days a week. For a cost of $7 per hour, which goes to keeping the café and adoption center open, guests can spend some quality time with the cats there while enjoying a beverage or spending time with family and friends.
Wendy Welch, Communications Director at HSHV, said that in just the first four months since the unique lounge opened there have already been nearly 100 adoptions with cats finding forever homes. However, she also pointed out that there’s more to Tiny Lions than just adoptions.
Welch said, “it’s not just the potential adopters who enjoy TLC; the cat café also provides and easygoing open environment to get some no-strings-attached cat snuggle time!”
That quality snuggle time has included a bachelorette party, a group of seniors on a day trip, and a mom with her sons whose father is allergic to cats – all in the same day! Being able to come in and just spend time with the cats, whether it’s for comfort, the sheer love of cats, or a chance to be around them if you can’t own one yourself (if family members have allergies, for example), is what Tiny Lions is all about.
And in the “catfé” the cats really do reign supreme. Towers, beds, and toys are spread around the lounge while a series of climbing shelves line the walls. So instead of being at a shelter, the cats get plenty of room to stretch their legs, play, and of course cuddle with the guests.
Tiny Lions has also added special events to their calendar, including reading with cats, yoga with cats, knitting with cats, movie nights, singles nights, parties and more. All of that allows local residents and visitors to spend quality time with the wonderful cats at the café and the result has been a lot of bonding and subsequent adoptions. Even the Tiny Lions website gives the disclaimer: “Leaving without a kitten not guaranteed.”
The unique cat café is a unique twist on the pet adoption process and shelter experience for both humans and animals. It has only been open for a matter of months, but so far it’s been a hit with everyone involved – especially the felines. Those participating in the special events on the calendar (like story time for children or yoga with cats), as well as the regular patrons who just wants a furry friend to cuddle with while go about their work are all loving the time spent with all the cats.
The Humane Society of Huron Valley is no stranger to rescue and adoption, either. Founded in 1896, HSHV has won numerous awards for their work with animals, and their staff and volunteers are passionate about seeing the organization continue to grow, expand, and help more and more animals in need.
So whether it’s lattes with a LaPerm, mochas with Maine Coons, or coffee from a Balinese barista, Tiny Lions Lounge & Adoption Center is one amazing place; and it’s yet another example of the cat café style of integrating adoption with interaction – a place where humans and cats can come together. And if the two should happen to bond, there’s always the possibility of adopting the cat right then and there.
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