Target: Margaux Gandelon, Owner of Café des Chats in Paris
Goal: Praise cafe owner for finding a creative way to both rescue stray cats and use the animals to benefit humans.
Margaux Gandelon has taken twelve stray cats that were either abandoned or adopted from a cat shelter and has turned them into stars that entertain humans with their mere presence, at a cafe featuring coffee and croissants. Margaux has performed no small gesture of kindness, as these cats that had to be on the streets or in shelters have gotten a new lease on life. Offered the comforts of a home where they are free to move around as they wish, they are also treated to the loving touch of cafe patrons who come to lavish their attention on them.
In fact, Gandelon has managed to implement a business model that promises to offer an ingenious solution to the stray animal problem. In many cities, urbanites have unfortunately adopted the mindset that stray animals are nuisances that, if not dealt with violently, must at the very least be removed so as to no longer get in their way. But with a cat cafe, we witness the transformation of the stray animal from enemy to a friend of the neighborhood. Offered creature comforts within the confines of a dining establishment, the stray animal is no longer a pest but a delightful companion.
It is easy to dismiss these cat cafes as merely yet another trendy offering for spoiled and wealthy yuppies. But in fact, if widely implemented, it could be a very effective way of dealing with strays worldwide. In the future, the concept could be expanded to include other animals such as dogs. In general, the more city residents get into the habit of wanting to spend time with animals just for the sake of enjoying their company, the more of them could be rescued from exploitation and abandonment.
While rescuing animals is the goal of such cat cafes, we shouldn’t neglect the side benefit of the joy and vitality that humans experience in the company of the creatures. The satisfaction derived from stroking a cat and having it respond to touch is not to be underestimated; such experiences of affection are as rewarding for the human as they are for the cat. Whether contact with cats can be qualified as a therapy that lowers blood pressure and relieves arthritis, as cafe owner Gandelon claims, is something best left to scientists to evaluate. But the claim is certainly plausible as intimate, affectionate touch could potentially induce a state of relaxation. Many happy pet owners wouldn’t hesitate to testify to the truth of this.
The hope is that many more cities across the world will come to look to cats as lovely friends with a healing touch. That way there will be fewer stray cats and more cafe cats that will offer their delightful company to humans. Sign this petition to applaud the cat cafe owner Margaux Gandelon for bringing together abandoned cats and city residents in a way that benefits both.
Dear Margaux Gandelon, Owner of Café des Chats in Paris
It is wonderful that you have had the idea that stray cats and those living in animal shelters don’t have to be neglected and can instead acquire a star status by being the feature attraction of a cafe. Urbanites have long been used to treating stray animals as an annoyance, but you have shown that they can in fact be a source of pleasure. After all, why should they be starving on the streets or cooped up in cat shelters when they can entertain humans within the cozy space of a cafe?
The best part is, they don’t have to do much to entertain other than just being themselves. Running around, playing, allowing their fur to be stroked, all things they do naturally, is all that it takes to bring joy to humans. The claim that the pleasure that humans obtain from interacting with cats is beneficial for our health may not have yet been universally proven, but should not be dismissed out of hand. The experience of affection that comes from touching and playing with a cat is certainly comparable to services offered by the health and wellness industry such as spas and massages.
Thank you for reminding us that city residents have no excuse for abandoning stray cats to the vagaries of fate. These fascinating creatures, full of life yet fragile, shouldn’t perish from neglect, because their healing and affectionate presence is so precious.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: happyhugger4 via Deviantart