6 Instagram Accounts Every Cat Lover Should Follow

People who know me know that I am absolutely. Obsessed. With. Cats.

I don’t know when it began, but the older I get, the more I relate to these majestic yet quirky, beautiful creatures. I love how silly and funny they can be, and how they all have different personalities. Cats get a bad rap as ‘cold and distant’ as compared to dogs, but I think cats can be incredibly affectionate and smart to boot – the only reason you can get them to do something is because they WANT to do it. And you can’t help loving them for how they are. When you’ve gained the love and trust of a cat, that’s when you know you’ve really made it in life. lol.

Unfortunately, due to my housing arrangements, I don’t have any cats of my own (yet) – but I’m always daydreaming of the day I can finally bring a kitty home and love it as my own.

In the meantime, I’ve had to content myself with looking at cat photos and videos. Here are five of my favourite Instagram cat accounts – spread the love and cuteness!

THEEBRUNOBARTLETT

Followers: 110,000  Based in: USA

Let me just start off by saying that I AM OBSESSED WITH THESE TWO GRAY POTATOES. Dubbed Bruno and Carlo, they’re both older cats, overweight and rescues. The account started with Bruno, a polydactyl cat with an extra thumb, so it looks like he’s wearing a glove. Then the new owners were connected to a rescue centre housing Carlo, and he looked so much like Bruno they just had to adopt him (awww). Bruno looks like the bad boy of the pair, while Carlo has a wide-eyed innocence that is absolutely adorable. The owners have been working very hard to help them lose weight, but they’re still pretty chonky. The best part is that they’ve learned this neat trick of standing up on their two hind legs when they want something. When I’m having a bad day at work, I come home and look at their antics – it helps me to destress somehow and just puts a smile on my face.

MISSENELL 

Followers: 579,000   Based in: Copenhagen, Sweden

I always look forward to my daily dose of Nelly & Gilbert! Nelly is the Birman/Ragdoll aka the Queen, while Gilbert the Bengal is her ‘servant’. Most of the videos involve Nelly ‘complaining’ about Gilbert; she is extremely chirpy and talkative, with a soft mew that just melts the heart. Of course it goes without saying that they’re both gorgeous – Nelly is fluffy with white booties and slightly crossed blue eyes, while Gilbert has a beautiful orange spotted coat with striking green eyes.

BO_MANG_CO 

Followers: 237,000  Based in: South Korea

The account’s name is short for Boss, Manggo and Coco (a family of dad, mom and daughter), although Manggo is featured more prominently and is definitely the sassiest. Despite looking quite obese (she literally looks like a ball when she curls up), fans love Manggo for her sassy attitude – and she can run faster than the other two when there’s food involved. It would be good if the owners could help her lose some weight for health reasons, but then again they have never stated that Manggo is unhealthy despite her large size.

MAKINLIKESHRIMP

Followers: 14,800  Based in: United States

I think this is a very underrated account and more people deserve to know about it! It’s dedicated to the owner’s two black cats, Daffodil and Leapfrog. The latter shot to fame on viral news outlets, thanks to her love for jumping over things at the exact same spot. They’ve put all sorts of things in her path, from people and dogs (above) to chairs and Christmas decorations. It’s quite fascinating to see:

 

KAFKA_BLACK 

Followers: 61,900    Based in : Nagoya, Japan

You guys know Toothless from the How To Train A Dragon animated series? Meet the real life Toothless – a beautiful inky black cat called Kafka. All of the posts on his IG are videos, where Kafka usually stares intently at the owner recording it, sometimes meowing. Kafka’s colouration is so black that his face ‘disappears’, so it feels like there are only two large eyes looking at you. He also has two fangs jutting out from the lower jaw when he mews, and his owner likes to dress him in nice colourful bowties which contrast nicely with his silky fur.

OMAME_MUNCHKIN 

Followers: 139,000 Based in : Japan

Another Japanese cat, Omame is a munchkin, which means that he has very short legs and a stocky body – automatically making it funny and cute when he runs or walks (like a bouncing furball, basically).  I also find Omame’s coat pattern, especially the little white patch directly underneath his mouth and on his chest, exceedingly adorable – gives him a pensive, thoughtful look.

There are actually plenty of other cat accounts that I follow – like @fatlaila, @hosico_cat, @chippie_gummy, @thesey_cat, @mami_and_morty, @merlin_griffith, and many more. Often they’re not only cute, but have unique stories – take merlin_griffith, a blind cat with eyes like the milky way, or @owl_kitty, whose owner has creatively incorporated her antics into various film and TV scenes. And then of course we have @wilfredwarrior, made famous by Michael Rapaport and his “Ma!”

If i were to list them all this post would be endless – but I recommend you check them out all the same! 🙂

Review: De-stress With Cute Kitties @ Purradise Cat Cafe, Taman Tun Dr Ismail Kuala Lumpur

**I’ve tried to cut down the number of photos to a minimum, but there are still like 20+ because every single one is so cute I MUST put them up lmao. 

Having pets have been known to help with stress, but since I can’t keep any at home, pet cafes are the next best thing.

After a particularly stressful day, decided to check out Purradise Cat Cafe in Taman Tun Dr Ismail KL. It wasn’t too far from the workplace, but weekday traffic can be hellish and it still took me an hour to get there. All worries were forgotten once I stepped into the brightly lit, cosy space to be greeted by this sight:

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WHY HELLO THERE KITTIES 

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KITTIES EVERYWHERE 

Cat cafes were all the rage a couple of years ago, but many have closed down. Purradise opened in 2015 and is still surviving; although how I’m not quite sure. The place was empty the entire hour I was there – not that I’m complaining because that means MORE KITTIES FOR ME

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LMAO look at the kitty at the bottom he’s just like wtf charles 

There are more than 20 cats in the cafe, mostly strays and rescues. While the place itself is clean, you do get the sourish odour of cat pee in the air which can be unpleasant for some. I got used to it because the ex had five cats. And a little bit of smell is nothing when you can be around these cuties; am I right or am I right?

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Staff was accommodating and friendly. The manager welcomed me with a smile and a menu for drinks (they’ve got basic stuff like hot chocolate and tea, but no snacks/food), and a ‘menu’ of cats – basically pictures of the resident cats, as she explained which ones I should or shouldn’t touch (there are some that are a little feral). You pay RM18 for an hour + drink, whereafter it’s RM4 for every subsequent 15 minutes (billed after you’re done).

The space itself was bright and cherry, with colourful pouffes, wooden pallet tables, an ‘island’ with tall chairs and plenty of nooks, crannies and beams for the kitties to hop on.

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The cats were not friendly and didn’t like to be touched, but it might be because it was close to feeding time and they were all waiting for food. It was calming enough to just look at their antics though – how can you feel stressed looking at this face? :3

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Waiting for food. The cats are fed a diet of raw chicken and you can tell they’re well fed and healthy from the plumpness of their bodies and the shine of their coats.

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The chonky one is Olaf; at 7, he’s the oldest cat in the cafe. Don’t you just want to smoosh you face into that glorious belly

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WTF – Where’s The Food

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The black kitty couldn’t wait and decided to try going ninja

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The front section of the cafe, with a cosy swing and more pouffes. Catwalks are installed overhead so the cats can enjoy looking down on the humans

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The kitties seemed more relaxed after they were fed – some even obliged when I flicked the feather toy at them (although they still didn’t want to be touched).

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Mostly they just sat around lazing, like this handsome tuxedo cat Patches. Funny how graceful yet potato-like they can be; its effing adorable

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Got up for a while and this one called Bubbles with a small nose patch took over the pouffe like the Queen she is

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Olaff From Above: A Study In The Perfect Feline Form  

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This kitty embodies my inner feelings.

Even though I didn’t get to touch the cats much, to quote Marie Kondo, looking at them just ‘sparked joy’ – and I left feeling relaxed and happier. A return visit is warranted.

PURRADISE CAT CAFE

First Floor, 24, Jalan Tun Mohd Fuad 2, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, 60000 Kuala Lumpur.

Opening hours: Mon – Fri (2 – 9PM), Sat (2 – 10PM), Sun (11AM – 7PM)

purradise.my

Travelogue: We Met A Magical Cat Lady @ Ayala Triangle Gardens, Makati City

…Before anything else, a selfie. Because I think we both look cute here lol.

After our morning trip to Salcedo Market (blog post here), we had a lot of time to kill, so we took a walk around the central business district (CBD) of Makati.

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One thing that strikes me each time I travel around Metro Manila is the huge disparity between CBD neighbourhoods such as Makati, Eastwood and Bonifacio Global City, and their surroundings.

On one hand, you have the general chaos of Metro Manila – honking jeepneys loading and unloading wherever they please, a thick layer of smog, garbage strewn along the streets, and pretty apparent poverty in some areas where kids run around half naked without shoes.

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On the other, you have the clean, almost clinical orderliness of the CBDs, with its nicely landscaped gardens, wide roads and pavements, glitzy malls and high-rise offices. It’s like entering another country altogether.

It reminded me a lot of LA, where you have ‘hood’ areas like Skid Row, with the homeless pushing carts asking for change, versus the glamorous excess and gigantic mansions of Beverley Hills.

Not saying we don’t have income disparity in Malaysia, because we do, but I think the contrast is particularly striking because of how visible it is.

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A monument of Sultan Kudarat, a Philippine national hero who ruled Mindanao in the 17th century. He fought against Spanish invaders and prevented the spread of Roman Catholicism in the southern regions, which is why the area still has a large population of Muslims today.

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Another monument nearby is that of Gabriela Silang, the first Filipina to lead a revolt against Spain. Born in the early 18th century, she married Diego Silang, a revolutionary leader. After his murder, she led troops in his stead – earning the title Generala – but was captured and publicly hanged by the Spanish. Today, she is remembered as a heroine. Here, she is depicted on horseback wielding a bolo, a traditional Filipino machete.

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More city scapes

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The Peninsula Manila, a five star luxury hotel. Apparently a ‘siege’ happened here in 2007, when a senator and a group of officers charged with mutiny walked out of their trial and occupied the hotel’s second floor. They were joined by some civilians and other military personnel supportive of their cause to overthrow what they said was the corrupt regime of President Gloria Arroyo. The coup ended with the military storming the lobby, as an armored tank crashed through its glass doors. Looking at it now, it’s hard to imagine such an event took place!

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Underpass

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Emerging at a tree-lined avenue.

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We decided to walk through Ayala Triangle Gardens – a nicely landscaped area with lots of greenery and shady trees. The park offered some respite from the humid, scorching Manila heat. There were people practicing Arnis (a Filipino martial art) on the green, an expat honing his football skills, and also this lady:

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A MAGIC CAT LADY 

I’m guessing she must be a feeder because she had a bag of kibbles. As she rustled it, a clowder of cats came out from behind trees and shrubs, and started following her around with their tails high in the air. There must have been at least 7 or 8 of them! GIVE ME ALL THE KITTIES 

PS: I love cats. Sadly, I still live at home with my parents (nothing to be ashamed of, I’m  Asian) and my mom is allergic to cats, so until the day I move out…

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Well maintained park

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An impressive archway with a bridge connecting two buildings.

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Arrived at Ayala Greenbelt, a series of posh malls where you can find high end brands like Gucci, Prada, etc. I liked how they designed the area to be green and full of trees – like an oasis amid the gaggle of glitzy malls.

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Mostly restaurants along an open-air stretch of mall.

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A pond with koi fish, popular with families in spite of the sweltering heat.

If you’re looking for a respite from the hustle and bustle of Manila, the Ayala Triangle Gardens and Greenbelt Malls is a great place to hangout and enjoy the greenery, pop in to the buildings for some air conditioning when it gets too hot, do some shopping and indulge in food.

More to come!

Jepp: A Study in Purrr-fection

 

Hi! Today I ‘d like to introduce you to Jepp, E’s son cat.

Apart from being absolutely adorable, Jepp has a unique personality and a distinctive mew that sounds like a squeak. He’s very submissive and doesn’t bite or scratch, even when manhandled. But he can be petty and child-like: evidenced by how he knocks things off the shelves when you ignore his squeaks for food.

Anyway, here are a couple of shots, taken in and around the house. The bluish overtone makes them look like he’s an old-world celebrity, the likes of Janis Joplin and The Beatles.

We should make this into a coffee table book.

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Jepp was rescued as a kitten, along with a couple of his common-looking siblings. The mom was nowhere to be found. He used to be all white, but developed patches of grey on his face like a mask, as well as on the bottom half of his body. We’re not sure what breed he is, but I suspect he’s at least part Ragdoll, judging from his brilliant blue eyes.

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Eyes that stare into your soul.

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The thing about Jepp is that he has so many expressions. You can tell when he’s acting ‘cute’ to get something, or when he’s annoyed, or when he wants affection. They are all a joy to watch.

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Supercat flying in his dreams

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King of the house, and he knows it.

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Jepp has completely adapted to modern, household life. He even knows how to use pillows, ie he only rests his head on them, and never his whole body. He still has an aversion to that enemy of all housecats – the vacuum cleaner.

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Jepp is a great poser, and he knows when his pictures are being taken. When he’s not in the mood, he simply refuses to look at the camera, or will flop over and show his backside. On the days he’s ‘in the mood’, he poses like a diva.

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His current favourite spot, besides the head of the bed, is the laundry basket. Filled with clean clothes, I might add.

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Like all cats, Jepp dreams of freedom and being able to catch birds in the outdoors one day.

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In the meantime, he’s quite content to sleep, eat and play while the human slaves tend to his needs and worship him like the God he is.

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Guest shot: Jepp’s housemates, Lilymik and Apu Jukkai. They hang out with him sometimes in the room, but are content to roam the hallway and living room. Other housemates include Gajeel, a very old black cat that enjoys eating salads, and another calico cat.

 

Jepp’s Flop Reel

E’s cat Josep ‘Jepp’ is super adorable. I mean, who wouldn’t love such a cute kitty? He’s a big boy, cuddly and fluffy, and he has the sweetest temper ever and the tiniest little squeak (he doesn’t mew). And unlike some mean cats out there, Jepp is super patient and will allow you to squeeze and snuggle him without protest. He’s very careful not to scratch or bite, even with strangers, so I guess he’d be a good pet to have in a household with kids.

One really funny thing about Jepp is that he likes to flop. He flops whenever E comes back from work, exposing his belly in a gesture that’s almost like “Welcome home, pet me!” And coz he’s kinda fat, it’s even funnier when the fats on his body jiggle around… 😀 So here I’ve put together a Jepp Flop Reel, playing to Bodies by Drowning Pool.

 

Enjoy!

 

 

 

A Famosa & St Paul’s Church, Malacca

The Portuguese conquered Malacca in 1511 and were here for over a 100 years – so its not surprising that they left behind a legacy.

The Serani (or Kristang) people are a product of intermarriages between Portuguese sailors and local Malay women. Numbering about 37,000, they are considered Portuguese-Eurasian and intermarriages are common today between Kristang and local Chinese and Indians. Because most are Christians, not all are willing to change their religious identities by marrying Malays (Malaysia has religious laws on conversion – you have to convert to Islam if you’re marrying a Malay, who are Muslim by birth.)

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Other important pieces of history left behind by the Portuguese is a fortress called A Famosa. Called the ‘Porta de Santiago’, it is one of the oldest surviving European architectural remains in Southeast Asia. Once consisting of four towers and four storeys, all that’s left today is the front at the foot of St Paul’s Hill. At the height of their occupation, the fort had an ammunition storage room, captains’ residence and officers quarters.

After the Dutch took over, they pretty much maintained the place, renovating the arch with ‘Anno 1670’ plus adding a bas-relief logo of the Dutch East India Company.

But the English who came in the 18th century were not so obliging. They destroyed most of the fort, leaving behind only this arch and a small part of the wall.

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On top of the nearby hill is St Paul’s Church, a Portuguese church built by a nobleman called Duarte Coelho. Originally built in 1521, it is the oldest church building in Malaysia and Southeast Asia (although non-functioning). The ruins are well preserved and attracts a large number of tourists every year.

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Strategic location: view of the sea from the hills for any enemy ships and whatnot.

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Dedicated to the Virgin Mary (the Portuguese were Catholics), the church was deeded to St Francis Xavier in Goa (he’s a canonized saint). His body was interred here for a short time. Visitors will see a statue of him in front of the church tower and ruins.

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The inside of the church was lined with old Portuguese tombstones. Despite being hundreds of years old, the stones were well kept and some were only slightly weathered. Most still carried beautiful details and inscriptions.

The church was used by the Dutch after they drove out the Portuguese, until they built the Christchurch near Stadthuys. It was then deconstructed and used as part of the old fort. When the Brits came, they used it as gun powder storage.

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We found a family of cats here!

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We saw this little fellow sleeping without a care for the world on top of a metal grilled protecting an underground burial chamber.

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The kitten was a real heavy sleeper.

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And then E found a treasure trove of kittens behind one of the old tombstones.

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Sleepy kittens. Don’t worry, we know the rules about handling kittens.. these were not newborn but had already opened their eyes and could walk around. They were just so sleepy from the afternoon heat lol.

St Paul’s Church and A Famosa are must sees (and must photograph-s!) when in Melaka, and a good reminder of the city’s history. Bonus points for having cats.

ST PAUL’S CHURCH/ A FAMOSA FORT 

Jalan Kota, Bandar Hilir, 75000 Melaka, Malaysia.

Manila Cat Cafe, Teachers Village Quezon City

(Update: This outlet is permanently closed)

I LOVE cats. With a capital L.

If I had my way, my house would be full of them…but because I’m broke and Asian (mostly the latter), I live with my parents – who hate cats.

It’s funny coz I’m the only one in my family who likes cats. Of course, dogs are cute too but cats are just so… full of character, you know? I like how haughty they are and how they always have that ‘Do I Look like I Give A Shit? Unless you have food’ look.

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When I found out there was a cat in E’s mum’s house, I was overjoyed because that meant lots of fluffy to play with. Turns out, Meme was a mean cat;  biting and scratching whenever we wanted to pet him. Don’t be fooled by that saintly expression and soft belly, it hurts when he bites! 😦

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This behaviour was totally different from the E’s cat, Jepp, the most adorable cat on the planet. Jepp is patient, doesn’t bite and scratch, and will let you manhandle (ie squeeze) him without batting an eyelid.

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“Omg the miming (cat) is so mean. But I wanna play with some cats,” I pouted.

Turns out, there was a Cat Cafe near his house. Hallelujah!

The small but cosy cafe is tucked inside a commercial building on the second floor, so look out for signs. Before entering, we had to sign a waiver, sanitize hands and wear flipflops provided by the cafe. Once inside, there was a small kitchen counter and loads of cat paraphernalia.

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All the cats here are rescued from the streets: you can find their pictures and names on one side of the wall.

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More kitty and other animal souvenirs.

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And… there they were. THE CATS. I counted at least 8. The cafe is very cat friendly, with loads of nooks and crannies, high shelves and corners for the cats to jump and play in. Due to limited space, the cafe can only hold about 15 people max. There are no chairs so you have to sit on the floor – not that we minded, as the kitties strolled past and rubbed against our legs. We were lucky because there weren’t many people when we dropped by.

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Some of the kitties were sleeping. ermehgerd I could have exploded with happiness.. nevermind that I left with fluff all over my shirt. Looking at cute cats just melts my stress away.

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Helloooo sleepyhead.

People say I have cats on the brain.. and that’s true. I think I love cats more than children. I know how my friends see it : I can practically picture them rolling their eyes when I’m enthusing about how Jepp is so intelligent. And fluffy. And cute. And fat. And a fluffball. And so cute. Ugh.

“You treat that cat like a baby, and he’s not even yours,” my mum said.

Damn right !

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Newspaper clippings, articles and pretty sketches.

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“Mama” cat, who was rather unfriendly lol.

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Visitors can use feathered toys and whatnot to play with the cats. There are some house rules to abide to to ensure the cats (and humans) are safe and happy.

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Once I sat down, this silky black cat wearing the cutest ‘Ateneo’ blue vest walked right up to me and sat in my lap as if he owned it. I fell in love <3. 

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We were lucky coz the cats were feeling needy, walking up to us for pets and affection.

I’ve seen too many cats that give me the ‘wtf don’t touch me I’m not in the mood’ look – they’re very different from dogs – but the cats here were friendly and cuddly.

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To enter the cafe, you need to pay PHP200 per person, which includes PHP100 worth of food and drinks. These are mostly snacks like biscuits and ice-blended smoothies. We ordered a Macadamia cookie with Peanut Butter ice blended drink.

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Food and drink was decent enough. But who in their right mind can concentrate on these when there are so many fluffies just walking around, waiting to be played with and petted?

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Ne’er a truer saying.

Verdict: If you love cats, this is Mecca. So come.

MANILA CAT CAFE 

2nd Floor, 189 Maginhawa St. corner

Makadios St., Sikatuna Village, 1101 Quezon City, Philippines

Phone: +63 922 836 4441

Opening hours: Daily (12pm -1opm)

More info: http://catcafemanila.com

*Bookings are strongly encouraged. They will only allow walk-ins if there is space in the cafe.

Kitties at A&W Puchong Permai, Puchong

Why pay extravagant prices at a cat cafe when you can play with the furry kitties at your neighbourhood A&W? 

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This sweetie responds to ‘miming’. I suspect the A&W staff feed her because she is unafraid of humans and keeps popping into the air-conditioned area whenever someone opens the door (the staff carried her outside several times). She seems to be the resident cat, because the last couple of months I was here she was already walking around the place. She likes to sit in the decorative box dividing the petrol station outside with the restaurant’s outdoor patio, next to the plants.

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There was also a male tabby. It was hugeee. Didn’t pet it because it looked mean, like the kind filled with testosterone and wont hesitate to scratch your eyes out. It sat at the foot of my chair lol.

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Simon and I had our usual unhealthy dose of cheesy beef and chicken nachos.

Don’t judge, I don’t have them very often. 😛

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Nothing like an ice cold root beer in 32 degree Celcius weather.

February is one of the hottest months in Malaysia, so we’re all bracing ourselves for the scorching sun and prolonged periods without rain. Drink lots of water and don’t get dehydrated! 🙂