reindeer. In this bar, you can drink a coffee and adopt a cat

She sits above the cash register, like a queen over her kingdom. If the mood is cuddly, nola willingly accepts a tip… In the form of a caress.

Because the young lady with the variegated coat and the white slippers is the star of the Cat Puccino, the cat bar installed since 2016 rue des Francs-Bourgeois, in downtown Rennes. Cozy and colorful, the place is warm. Like its owner, Sophie Allain, who wanted to add her touch to a concept that was not yet very developed in France at the time.

Le Chat Puccino operates according to a golden rule: cats are kings, and customers are prohibited from bothering them. | WEST FRANCE

“I had heard about it in Japan, where I have family. I visited in Paris and Montpellier, before I started. » Offering drinks and pastries (house) like any other tea room, the cat bar operates according to a basic rule: the customer adapts to the animals, whose well-being is at the center. “You must not wake them up, pet them or feed them”warns the 48-year-old Rennaise, animal lover for as long as she can remember.

Cats to adopt

“As a child, I brought everything home: salamanders, leeches… I was the Brigitte Bardot of children, and my parents couldn’t take it anymore! » A volunteer with associations, Sophie has temporarily taken in homeless animals as a foster family for ten years. But had not thought of devoting himself to it professionally before a decisive meeting.

A foster family for ten years, Sophie Allain had a click to open her cat bar while talking with a zootherapist. | WEST FRANCE

“One day, I ran into a zootherapist. It made me click. » Educator specializing in reintegration, the quadra then operates a turn that makes her smile, with hindsight. I went from the reintegration of humans to that of animals”she laughs, between two caresses nola and Nouky. Brother and sister, the two cats are not available for adoption, unlike the other residents of the bar.

Green Eyes and Snook, they are looking for a family forever, like the many furballs rescued by the Aristopoils association, based in Châteaugiron, with whom Sophie Allain collaborates. If a client falls in love with a cat, the boss of Le Chat Puccino arranges for an initial interview. “Then the association takes over and visits the person’s home. »

Full of purrs

“They leave too quickly, your cats! » The door barely crossed, Hakima hopes to find the furball of his dreams. “I passed by chance in the street, and I saw cats in the window. I think the concept is brilliant! » Since the opening of Chat Puccino in 2016, 165 cats passed through its walls have been adopted. “With such visibility, it goes much faster”emphasizes Sophie Allain.

Sophie Allain recently hired two part-time employees, including Antoine. Here with Nouky. | WEST FRANCE

During their stay, from a few weeks to several months, the furry boarders also delight clients who cannot adopt, but come to get their fill of purrs. “Students who do not have suitable accommodation, for example. »

But in no case, recalls Sophie, the establishment “does not exploit” animals, contrary to some criticism leveled at cat bars when they exploded in 2017-2018. “I do not touch anything on adoptions”specifies the manager, who works for the animals on a completely voluntary basis, and recently hired two part-time employees for the catering part.

reindeer. In this bar, you can drink a coffee and adopt a cat

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