D.C.’s first cat cafe opened in June with lots of hype, crowdfunded money and laughs. The idea is seemingly absurd — people pay $15 to go into a storefront and play with a cat that is not their own — but, well, so far there’s interest, and it appears to be a sustainable business in D.C.
And now, Kanchan Singh, the founder of Georgetown’s Crumbs & Whiskers, is upping the cafe’s yuppie factor. On Tuesday, people can participate in a yoga class in the establishment with the cats doing their own thing throughout it all.
“The yoga will be done in a room full of cats, and we think it’s going to be super fun,” Singh said. “It might be slightly dysfunctional in the best way possible because you can’t control a cat that wants to use a yoga mat as a scratch pad.”
While these intrusions might sound like the opposite of zen, Singh isn’t the first one to foster cat yoga in her cafe. New York’s cat cafe, Meow Parlour, hosts yoga every week, which includes 30 minutes of cat bonding, 45 minutes of yoga and 15 minutes of saying goodbye to the cats. A New York Magazine writer tried out the class and determined it was partly about doing yoga in a room with cute cuts and partly sustained by the idea that this is the type of yoga class you’d want to self-mockingly tell your friends about.
Yes, cat yoga might seem absurd when you consider it’s something you could do at home, with your own cat and your YouTube yoga videos, for free. But you don’t go to cat yoga because your regular exercise class was overbooked. You go because it’s a unique experience, and will probably be a funny story to tell later on, and because when you mention you went your friends will say, “But do the cats, like … do the yoga with you?” Or, in the case of one woman who attended, “You’re doing yoga with cats? That’s disgusting.”
At Crumbs & Whiskers, Georgetown’s Down Dog yoga studio will teach the class for an hour and 15 minutes. After that, participants will have 30 minutes to just play with the cats, which are all available for adoption. There will be two yoga classes on Tuesday, Sept. 22, at 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Classes cost $25, and Singh expects them to be capped at 15 people each.
For now, this is a one-time event, but Singh says she is considering making it a regular fixture.
“It’s just a fun experience,” she said. “You know, if we just combine the two it will create a megaforce of zen and happiness.”