It's been announced in the Star Tribune and other outlets that a woman in Minneapolis will be opening a 'cat cafe' this week. It raises a few alarms/questions in my mind. How many cats are going to be there? Can anyone bring in their cat? Do I want to battle 4-legged ninjas while trying to relax with a cup of coffee?

Before we get into that, how does something like this even happen?

The answer is...slowly. First the owner had to apply for the appropriate licensing. The cafe had to get two separate licenses: one for the coffee shop side, which is classified as a restaurant, and one for the cat side – which is separated by walls and a set of double doors, and classified as a pet shop. The owner also had to acquire a kennel license. In addition to that the owner started a community petition to avoid being classified as an animal shelter, which would have affected the kind of facility they could open in.

So how does it work? Cats come to the cafe from three different rescue organizations around the Twin Cities. The shop can take 15 cats at one time. If cafe goers want to adopt a certain cat, the shop will connect them with the appropriate rescue organizations. Cats staying at the cafe will live in that space, which is built out with custom cat furniture, full-time.

But what about the smell, 15 cats? The cats will have hidden litter boxes throughout the cafe in various areas.

Sadly cat owners won't be able to just bring their cats in at all, but you can get your fix if you are away and missing feline companionship.

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