While recent months have seen Hong Kong’s pet cafes expand to more “exotic” animals such as hedgehogs and reptiles, man’s best friend is now claiming the spotlight with the opening of Hong Kong’s first shiba cafe, Mame & Shiba.
Located in an upstairs venue on Foo Ming Street in Causeway Bay – incidentally the same street as the famous cat cafe – Mame & Shiba Cafe is home to nine shiba inus and a mame shiba inu (a smaller version of the breed) which have been flown in from Japan. For just $78, customers can enjoy thirty minutes of cuddles and playtime with any of the adorable pups.
To ensure they don’t get overly stimulated and are well rested at all times, the dogs are divided into two groups which each take on a four to five-hour “shift” every day, while those off duty get to stay in the resting area, away from prying eyes.
Before you enter the dogs’ playpen, you will be asked to take off your shoes and clean your hands with a sanitizer, after which you can enjoy all the playing, petting, and picture-taking you like. The only rules are that you’re not allowed to pick the dogs up from the ground or feed them – so no treats! If you’re a newbie to dogs, the owners will teach you how the pups like to be stroked, how to play with them, and even give you advice and tips if you’re thinking about becoming a shiba parent.
While the cafe’s menu is currently limited to simple carton drinks such lemon tea and Japanese cup noodles, perhaps the promise of five more dogs in the future, and a little persuasion from customers, will convince the owners to expand their offering. But in the meantime, you can browse the collection of adorable shiba merchandise, such as plush toys, tote bags, and wallets, to remember the residents and support the venue.
Walk-ins are welcome during weekdays between 12pm to 9pm, but if you want to pay a visit on weekends or public holidays, then you need to book 48 hours in advance.
Mame & Shiba Café, Rm J, 3/F, Po Foo Building, 1-5 Foo Ming Street, Causeway Bay, (+852) 5931 8931