CatTown cat cafe Oakland
Cats,  Reviews & interviews,  Shelter Cats

The Battle For Best Cat Cafe

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  • CatTown cat cafe Oakland

    Cat cafés are a growing global phenomena but are some better than others? Some are cozy and cluttered while others are sleek and modern. Some cafés don’t allow their feline residents to be adopted while other cafés double as adoption facilities. As cat café culture continues to grow in popularity, it’s up to the public and café customers to decide what’s best.

    What do you as a cat lover want in a cat café? Let the battle for the best cat café begin! Let us know with your comments.

    Tell us: have you visited a cat café? Would you adopt a cat from one? If there is a cat café in your city and you’d like to review it for us, please email Layla at [email protected]

    The best way to help raise awareness are unbiased cat café reviews ideally from locals who can visit on more than one occasion. Our roving reporter Denise DiBetta aka Dee and her assistant Nik Halaka recently visited Cat Town Cat Café the first U.S. cat caféin Oakland, California. Not only are Dee and Nik locals, they are mega pop cat culture fans.

    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland
    Dee DiBetta


    This past Saturday, January 3rd, Nik and I celebrated the New Year by visiting the 3-months’ new Cat Town Café in Oakland, California! The Café opened in October 2014, and since then we’d heard a lot of buzz about it from friends and blogging peers who’d been there multiple times…so of course we were excited to see it for ourselves!

    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland

    Though we had done some research prior to our visit, our actual experience there far exceeded our expectations. I won’t go into elaborate details about the super cool co-owners, Ann Dunn and Adam Myatt, or the awesome mission, vision and values of the organization itself, as all those details have been blogged about, and can be found on the Cat Town Café’s website, at

    But for those of you who would appreciate a brief summary, Ann and Adam run an independent, non-profit organization, and partner with volunteers from Oakland Animal Services. Their efforts target at-risk kitties, least likely to be adopted, that have been surrendered to Oakland’s Municipal shelter. Through the foster-based program that Ann and Adam have created, many at-risk kitties are afforded the opportunity to blossom and find loving, permanent homes, thus lowering the number of animals that ultimately end up being euthanized. Good job Ann and Adam!

    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland Ca.

    When we entered the Cat Town Café, we were immediately greeted by the smell of freshly brewed artisan coffee and smiles from friendly, feline-loving staff. Cat themed art popped everywhere from the walls, and unique merchandise on display added intrigue and visual excitement upon entering the Café.

    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland Ca

    Delicious pastries and bagels were available for purchase, and bistro table for guest seating dotted the room. From the Café itself, we could see the ‘main attraction’ (the cat room!) through large windows, where modern cat furniture and charming custom-built cat structures created a welcoming environment for both kitties and would-be adopters alike.
    Though walk-ins are fine, reservations are encouraged if you want to be assured a visit to the cat room, as only a limited number of people are allowed in at any given time.
    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland Ca

    Our reservation was for 12 noon, and after a friendly chat with Janet at the cashier’s booth, and wolfing down a scrumptious sea salt bagel with vegan cream cheese and a blueberry scone, Nik and I were escorted into the cat room by Adam himself, where we were immediately impressed by the whimsical yet very tranquil atmosphere.

    Comfortable sitting chairs were occupied with potential adopters who were either playing with, or quietly observing the kitties. There were 12 kitties present in the cat room that day, however as kitties will do, some had made themselves ‘invisible’ by crawling deep inside of the cat structures to sleep. Rules posted in and around the cat room discouraged behaviors such as picking up the kitties, or bothering them if they were at rest…but playing with them if they were awake, and taking pictures without using a flash was highly encouraged!
    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland Ca.
    Samantha and Stephanie, two of the Café’s friendly volunteers, were on hand in the cat room to share some interesting information with us. They told us that the custom-built cat structures were created by the same artist who created the structures that make up the range at the very popular Subpar Miniature Golf course in Alameda, California. The structures represent several historical buildings that grace the skyline of downtown Oakland, one of them being the Tribune building, inside of which we observed a beautiful young black kitty sleeping peacefully on a fleece bed.
    Cat Town cat cafe Oakland

    Samantha and Stephanie went on to explain that the limit for the cat room is about twenty kitties, and that eleven to fourteen kitties is really the “happy place” in terms of occupancy. The kitties at the Café live in the cat room 24/7, and there is a ‘quiet room’ off to the side of the main room for those kitties who are new to the facility, or just feeling shy and want to be alone. The volunteers work with the kitties outside of business hours to help socialize them, and by-appointment adoptions take place on Mondays and Tuesdays when the Café is closed for business.

    As of January 3rd, 77 kitties had been adopted into loving forever homes! What an accomplishment! Needless to say we were extremely impressed with our experience at the Cat Town Café, and would encourage anyone living in the Bay Area, or passing through, to visit. Be sure and make an advance reservation if possible — $10 per person donation, which confirms your admittance into the cat room — and go with an appetite so that you can enjoy some of the delicious offerings for sale! You’ll love your time spent in the cat room, and perhaps you’ll even leave the with a new best friend! Hopefully you will have the opportunity to meet Ann or Adam while you are there, and I’m sure you’ll agree with us that they are about the kindest, friendliest people you will ever come into contact with.

    Visit Cat Town Café’s Facebook page for news and to meet their latest cats.


  • Mom

    Sounds like a pretty neat place to visit!! Only problem would be you couldn’t take all the kitties home with you………………………….

  • maggie

    How wonderful that so many cats have been adopted there. It seems like a very well thought out and designed place – with the welfare of the cats at heart. I hope this trend spreads!

  • Skeeter and Izzy

    PURRFECTION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We have never been to a Cat Cafe but find it all wonderful if done correctly with the cats and their well being being priority #1. This cafe seems to have gotten it purrfect! We love the idea of adoptios from the cafes and the less adoptables are the best group to target. Thank you for sharing this Layla.
    Luvs to you and the Gang,
    Skeeter and Izzy and the Feral Gang + Twig & Peanut & Romeo >^..^<

  • Annabelle

    This idea is really a good concept. I think people respond better to a situation where the surroundings are less than sterile. I understand shelters do the very best that they can but I can see why this would be more appealing and why adoptions would be up.

  • Tamago

    That is such a wonderful cafe! I love that at-risk kitties get the chance to blossom and find forever homes. I hope there will be more cat cafes like this.

  • Kathryn

    I love this trend of cat cafes. So much better than adoption centers at Petsmart.

    I imagine MA has some, but I haven’t researched.

    This is a great trend. A loved kitty is a happy kitty. A happy kitty makes a great pet. Even formerly unloved kitties can become happy again. All it takes is YOU.

      • Debbie Ouderkirk

        Hi: I agree that Petsmart should start Cat Cafes. It would be good for their business if more people adopted cats from them, because they would probably buy food, later, etc.

        I would like to see one here in Ottawa Canada. I am planning to phone their headquarters. I think everyone should phone to put the pressure on the company.

  • da tabbies o trout towne

    doodz…if we were “cafe kittehz”….we wood want a happee, healthee, kleen enviro …that wood be number 1… we wood like ta be abe bull to mingle a bit…hope R forevers food serviss purrson wood walk thru de door N start de adoptshun process…. N noe for sir tin we were looked afturr…after hours…

    noe cafe’s were we live…. ore close 🙁

    heerz two a warm, walleye, whitefish week oh end !! ♥♥♥

  • Sammy

    What a great cat café…..and they’re doing everything right I think…..comfort for the humans visiting and not only comfort and safety for the kitties but they just might find a forever home out of the deal and exposure. I just love that……and it is my idea of what an ideal cat café would be…..77 adoptions is FABULOUS!

    Pam and Sam

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