Companion animals are banned in many apartments in Nagoya, Japan. As a result, pet-themed cafés that allow patrons to eat, drink, and interact with animals, have become popular.
The cafés are usually cat-themed, but the Usagi-to-Café is All About Rabbits: 18 resident bunnies are available, in a separate room, for patron interaction.
The café charges 900 yen, or about $11, for 30 minutes inside the café (includes one drink). There is also a fee of about $1 per minute to cuddle bunnies. People may “BYOB” (Bring Your Own Bunny”) which is promoted as a way to “socialize” bunnies.
For about $35 per person, the café offers a 2-hour special that includes one drink, a “random salad”, rabbit pizza (and I do hope they mean rabbit-shaped pizza…), rice and dessert.
Personally, I’m skeptical about any benefit that rabbits might get from “socialization.” Especially if the bunnies are not spayed or neutered. In fact, I imagine it to be something like the bunny version of the old Wild West.
As most rabbit-savvy people know, the bonding process (introducing two bunnies to each other) is both an art and a science. And it rarely happens in 30 to 60 minutes.
My own bunnies would be unhappy about leaving their familiar surroundings, and being forced to see, much less, interact with other rabbits.
“Hot and cold like the child dying” ?
The café Web site does emphasize that it is not responsible for fighting or “trouble.” It also warns against “mounting.” I don’t know if the café rabbits are spayed and neutered. It would be interesting to learn more.
If you read Japanese (or know someone who does), please check out the Web site and let us know what you find.
I tried to use Google’s language translator to find out more from the café Web site, however the results can be hit and miss, generating some nonsensical translations (see the photo/description below):
Feature: hot and cold like the child dying ♪
Do you think a Bunny café would do well in the U.S.? Would it be a good way to educate people about rabbits in an entertaining way? Let us know what you think!