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    Photos courtesy of Purrfect Day Cat Cafe

    Chuck Patton says about five spots turned down his idea for a cat cafe before he found his place on Bardstown Road, just up from the Bard’s Town. “They said, ‘Are you crazy?’ And I said, ‘Yes, that’s why this is going to work,’” he says. It’s Wednesday, August 8, which just happens to be International Cat Day, and the grand opening of the Purrfect Day Cat Cafe is completely booked.

    A glass partition divides the café — where you can buy “cat-ppetizers” like hummus and pasta salad, “pawstries” (pastries) and “meowcohol” like beer and wine — from the cat room. Inside, families snuggle and play with 18 kittens up for adoption from the Kentucky Humane Society, all of them already spayed or neutered and up-to-date on shots. They scamper over a fuzzy rug, slide over the wood-panel floor and bat at feathery toys. A few pile up for naps in the ample beams of sunlight streaming through the front windows. Patton calls the group snoozefests “cuddle puddles.”

    About 15 employees keep things running while volunteers play matchmaker with prospective adopters. Fifty minutes with the cats costs $10 per person, $12 on weekends. Adopting a kitten costs $120, but it’s less for older cats. Adoption fees go back to KHS, as do all of Purrfect Day’s tips. (Patton says they donated about $3,500 to KHS in their first week.) Before one group’s session ends, people line up and press their faces to the glass, eager for their turn.

    Ten cats get adopted in the first day, and by mid-August, Purrfect Day will have placed around 54 cats in new homes. Patton hopes to adopt out 300 cats in his first year.

    At home, Patton keeps an eye on the cats via a video feed on his iPad. Though he’s happy when they find new homes, it can be a little sad to say goodbye. Recently, some kittens he’d gotten attached to were adopted. “It was bittersweet,” he says, “because I had been bonding with them day and night for three days.”

    See more photos of the cat cafe in the slideshow below.

     

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