Cat yoga boosts pet adoptions

Cat yoga in Preston. (Photo: Jordan Buchanan)

Cats and yoga might sound like an odd and deeply non-relaxing combination, but a Melbourne yoga studio is mixing the two with sell-out success.

Maneki Neko Cat Rescue and Hot Spot Preston have joined forces to run the sessions to promote cat adoption.

Doing a downward dog while a curious cat wanders underneath you makes for yoga sessions filled with laughter, and it’s also great for connecting people looking for a pet with cats that need to be re-homed.

“The yoga gives people an opportunity to spend time with the cats and make a connection,” Hot Spot owner TC Tai tells Hatch.

Samantha McKernan, one of the founders of Maneki Neko, says the approach has worked beyond all expectations.

“Last year we adopted about 1100 cats, but this year we are on track to adopt 1500,” she says.

“Definitely, some people have come in and fallen in love with a cat they have met at yoga. I think the cats like it too, because it’s a calm activity and they enjoy interacting with people.”

The space in the Melbourne suburb of Preston offers visitors a lounge and rescue cat waiting centre, and a gift shop and plant store to raise money for the organisation, which is run by roughly 200 volunteers.