T R AV E L The wildlife in Japan will require another piece altogether because it is so diverse and there is so much to see that you will lose count of the exotic birds and animals. PETTING CAFES OF JAPAN Moving to more urban areas, the unique concept of petting cafes is one of those things you do not want to miss when you are there. Different kinds of petting cafes have been made to cater to the many animal lovers in this sprawling metropolis of 13 million people. As you wait for the delicious muffin you ordered, a variety of domesticated animals roam around you looking for cuddles, and these animals vary from cats to rats and even snakes. If reptiles and the likes give you goose bumps or you feel uncomfortable petting them, you can just watch them enjoy their meal. Hygiene is pretty well taken care of. An anti-bacterial dispenser at each table allows you to rinse your hands after petting. The whole concept might sound strange but in Tokyo this is the way it usually works and the residents enjoy it. Special cat cafes have come into existence where people can enjoy feline company without the hassle of emptying the litter box. These cafes are usually open till 2 a.m. In fact, the cafes are busiest during evening and late hours, as people like to visit them after a tiring day at work. Just when we thought we have had enough of owls in the world of fashion, with owl themed accessory to clothing to footwear, owl cafes or “fukurou cafes” in Japanese, popped open in Japan like a well-shaken bottle of soda. Offering owl-themed food and drink, these cafes became a centre of attention in both good and bad way. The idea of owl cafes was not taken down well by many people across the world and generated fair share of controversy along with animal rights groups standing against the concept. 41