Animal lovers, get your tails to Montreal for North America's first vegan cat cafe.
Café Venosa opens this week with the mission of finding homes for shelter pets, while doing right by all animals.
"Loving and protecting animals is about loving and protecting all of them, not just companion animals," explains owner Summer Geraghty, who is an artist with a background in animal rescue. "A vegan cat cafe seemed like the only rational solution."
Menu offerings include environmentally friendly coffee, as well as delicious-sounding quiches, soups, salads, sandwiches, desserts and more, all made without animal products.
"Any sentient being used as a machine and for profit is incomprehensible to me," says Geraghty.
The cafe will double as a gallery, with an emphasis on local artists.
And the cats, because we know what you're really coming for, will come from the Montreal SPCA -- where Geraghty has worked and volunteered -- and will be up for adoption.
There are four kitties to start; more may be added in over time. (And no, while the cats do eat high-grade organic food, they are not themselves vegan. They may be switched over to raw food, though, says Geraghty.)
A few days before opening, Geraghty says she's feeling hopeful that Café Venosa -- named for Geraghty's own beloved 16-year-old rescue cat from the Montreal SPCA -- will be seen as more than a gimmick.
She'd like her business to become an educational resource that promotes good values while serving good food, with the aim of making life better for all the world's animals. Plus, of course, cats.
"I am most excited about trying to make a difference for the animals," she says. "A guilt-free, eco-cafe that exhibits art, supports local businesses and that re-homes cats is my version of a utopia."
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