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A Closer Look At The Owl Cafes Of Japan

Travelers Today       By    JC Santos

Updated: Mar 06, 2017 05:05 AM EST

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Owl cafes in Japan are undeniably popular -- it's not every day that you can have a huge-eyed avian as company while you dine. It truly sounds like a fantasy cafe straight out of "Harry Potter," but animal activists dismiss the marketing attraction as dangerous to the animals because reports of carelessness and maltreatment have surfaced.

According to The Mirror UK, animal rights activists in China said many owl cafes lacked the the necessary staff to care for the avian. They also raised the issue that the sleeping pattern of owls is disrupted; owls sleep in the morning as they are natural nocturnal creatures. This might cause the owls to have possible health complications -- which constitute to animal abuse according to Activist Chihiro Okada of the Animal Rights Centre in Tokyo.

Okada added that in any situation establishments or organizations captivate animals, the risk of abuse increases .Most cafes tie the feet of the owls to perches to disable them from flying outside the establishment -- which Okada views as also possible grounds for animal abuse.

According to Reuters, the increasing number of domestic and foreign guests and the shortage of staff members could likely lead to neglect. It reported that some owl cafes allow customers to "freely interact with owls" but most, such as Owl Village Cafe, requires the presence of a trained cafe employee to teach guests how to interact with the owl and make them company during their stay.

Domestic travelers head to Harajuku district's five owl cafes to maximize their luck by the end of the year. The owl in Japan is a symbol of good luck.

Japan's fondness for strangeness leaves them in lists of unique experiences -- food, for example. Cafes that feature other animals such as cats and dogs, goats, and even hedgehogs rival Japan's owl cafes. According to animal rights activists, the captivity of wild animals could only increase with the boom of animal-themed Japanese cafes.

See Now: The U.S. had the highest number of Most Wanted properties, dominating the Hotels.com Loved By Guests Awards 2018

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owl cafe japan, owl cafes japan, japan's owl cafes, owl cafes in japan, japan tourism, tokyo owl cafes
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